Coder and web de­vel­oper Sim Sokeara on the rapidly changing Cam­bo­dian tech scene

Sim Sokeara is the se­nior lead web de­vel­oper at Codin­gate, a Ph­nom Pen­hbased cod­ing ser­vices com­pany that won Startup of the Year at the Asean Rice Bowl Startup Awards 2017. He was part of the team of eager stu­dents who helped found the com­pany back in 20

Southeast Asia Globe - - Contents -

Tell me about your work at Codin­gate…

I work on web­site devel­op­ment. We work us­ing Word­Press – a tech­nol­ogy that helps build web­sites. We can build nor­mal web­sites, com­pli­cated web­sites – it's flex­i­ble and it's easy. I can see that peo­ple can use the web­site with­out IT skills.

How did you get into the pro­fes­sion?

Ac­tu­ally, I never thought I would study IT. Af­ter I grad­u­ated with my bach­e­lor's de­gree, I saw the schol­ar­ship an­nounce­ment at the IT school, Passerelles Numériques Cam­bo­dia [PNC]… I wanted to try [it]. Af­ter I grad­u­ated from PNC I met my first client, [and] we tried to build a vir­tual com­pany… Af­ter we fin­ished one project [with] him, he rec­om­mended to start up with Sok Sopheak­monkol – he's the CEO of Codin­gate. It was only a small startup com­pany. We had 13 mem­bers and we tried to work, [but] we had no big bud­get… so we [did an] ex­change with the client [in which Codin­gate initially com­pleted work for clients in re­turn for lap­tops, which were given to staff ].

Tell me about a key project you have worked on…

[One project was] a web­site for job an­nounce­ments. It was very chal­leng­ing – the first time I worked on user in­ter­face only. [For] this project we tried to build a web­site with a job fil­ter. Like if the user wants to fil­ter by cat­e­gory, by salary, by skill… It's in­ter­est­ing and I'm very happy that I [was able] to com­plete it. For some web­sites that we build, maybe we need the back­end team to help us, but we try to build as a team.

What is the fu­ture for this field in Cam­bo­dia?

I think in the fu­ture it [will be] more chal­leng­ing [for] the coder be­cause we need to up­date from one day to [the next], be­cause tech is al­ways new. If we work only on our skills, we can­not chal­lenge or com­pete with other com­pa­nies, be­cause they try to fol­low the tech­nol­ogy… We [should] also do re­search [to see if a] tech­nol­ogy [is some­thing] that many peo­ple use and if it's easy to man­age or easy to learn. Be­cause some­times we're not sure – [the] tech­nol­ogy can be new, but it's not good.

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