Once we have a new hire brought up to speed on our tools and processes, we begin a week of intense, classroom-style training.
Currently, this training spans over four days (ie. Tuesday-Friday of their first week), and is taught by a mix of me and my most senior staff.
For the most part, we use slide decks (which you can find here) that I’ve presented in the past as a framework for the training, elaborating extensively and providing concrete examples throughout.
We try to leave the new hires some time in the afternoon of each day to explore some of the concepts taught. Each successive morning, we leave some time for a quick review of the previous day’s content, and to address any questions that have arisen.
On the first day of training, we run through “Things Every ActionScript Developer Should Know”, breaking out into “Resource Management” at the appropriate time. This introduces code standards, some philosophy, programmatic motion, object oriented programming, design patterns, resource management, and some related project management and UX concepts.
The second and third days are based around my “ActionScript 3 Workshop” slides, and focus on a technical overview of ActionScript, Flash and the AVM2 ecosystem. The third day ends with an overview of UI frameworks, including Flex.
While we work with a number of interactive technologies (such as Silverlight, HTML5, iOS, and Android), Flash remains our core business and is our reference technology. It’s easy to teach someone another technology if they have a strong grounding in one already.
Their last day of classroom training includes a run through optimization strategies and core user experience concepts using “Quick As a Flash” and “Creating Effective RIA Interfaces” as the outlines (the latter is old, but remains largely relevant).
Based on feedback from our first “grads”, we’ve been debating spreading out this rather intense four days of training over an additional week, and giving the trainees day-long projects to solidify their knowledge in between classroom sessions.
We end the new hires’ first week with a review of the next phase, solo project development, and encourage them to brainstorm over the weekend.
The next article in this series, “Planning”, can be found here.