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Growth Engineering at Coursera

February 25, 2019

Growth Engineering at Coursera

What is Growth, what are the must have skills for Growth engineering teams and how to acquire those skills.


February 25, 2019

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  1. Introduction • Engineering Manager on Growth Acquisition team @Coursera •

    Four years at Coursera, three in Growth team • Multi-stack engineer - Mobile (Android), front-end, backend, distributed systems, big data.
  2. Agenda 1. Background and career path 2. Growth Engineering a.

    What is Growth? b. Skills to have c. A day in the life of d. Training to be a Growth Engineer 3. Q&A
  3. Background • Master’s Degree is CS, Bachelor Degree in CS&E

    • Microsoft, MapR Technologies, Amazon, Coursera - total 9 years of industry experience. • Topics I am usually excited about ◦ Building teams, creating a culture of collaboration and learning ◦ Building secure software ◦ Personalization and machine learning ◦ Architecting and engineering great software products ◦ Growth engineering • Coursera learner and started with Andrew Ng’s Machine Learning Course
  4. What is “Growth”? • when applied to the digital world,

    it means, ◦ Building products to grow the user base • Solving...three most difficult and hard problems that any consumer product has to deal with. ◦ How to get people on the front door? ◦ How to get them to an “Aha” moment as quickly as possible? ◦ How do you deliver core product value as often as possible? • Incubator for new product/business streams
  5. Exercise (after the webinar) • Browse - coursera.org/browse • Products

    - coursera.org/learn/machine-learning • Search - coursera.org/courses • Logged in - Recommendations - coursera.org/recommendations • Logged in - Enroll and checkout from coursera.org/learn/machine-learning ◦ Don’t have to pay, just for demo • Contrast with Amazon, Pinterest, other ecommerce sites that you visit.
  6. Growth funnel and (pirate) metrics Growth team engages in solving

    the optimization problem in minimizing customer acquisition cost (CAC) and maximizing Lifetime Value(LTV) from users, across channels and marketing segments over time.
  7. Types of products built by a Growth team • Authentication

    flows (login/signup) • User Onboarding • Search, Browse and Recommendations • Payment flows • Product pages • Notifications - email, web, push • Ads and promotions • Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and affiliate marketing features • Tools for Marketing, Data Science, SEO and content
  8. Infrastructure underlying Growth products 1. Microservice infrastructure 2. Front end

    web apps infrastructure 3. Mobile (iOS and Android) infrastructure 4. A/B testing platform 5. Payments infrastructure 6. Authentication infrastructure 7. Search and recommendations infrastructure
  9. Core Skills 1. A Growth Engineering team is usually a

    combination of FE, BE and mobile engineers. Most Growth teams are organized as Agile teams. 2. On FE a. HTML, CSS, Javascript b. ReactJS, Angular c. Node.js (Nice to have) 3. On BE a. Java, Python, Ruby on Rails, Scala (@Coursera) b. Databases - MySQL, NoSQL (C*, MongoDB) c. Cloud Computing Technologies (AWS, Google Cloud, etc) d. Building microservices 4. Mobile a. iOS or Android programming
  10. Advanced Skills • TDD, Reliability • Site Reliability Engineering (SRE)

    skills - Availability, Performance • Localization, internationalization, accessibility, responsiveness • Leadership skills - Leading teams, planning and scoping
  11. 1. Full-stack engineers get the most out of this role.(FE

    + BE, Mobile + BE) 2. Additional skills ◦ SEO ◦ A/B Testing ◦ Authentication systems ◦ Recommendation systems ◦ Payments systems ◦ Notification systems ◦ Familiarity with data warehousing and querying 3. Building tools to automate repeated tasks • Create Promotions, create, run and analyze Ads, create Upsells, create content hubs, etc Growth Engineering skills
  12. Day in the life of 1. Look at Dashboards projecting

    user growth a. Spot anomalies, look at causes, engage in discussions, brainstorm ideas 2. Build new features fast a. Build high quality MVPs b. Test fast, iterate, improve c. Localization, internationalization, accessibility, responsiveness 3. Run or analyze A/B tests. (with data scientists) a. Is the test correct? b. Is the test working? c. Rollback or rollout?
  13. Where to learn? • New to Software Engineering? ◦ Curiosity

    ◦ Bootcamps ◦ Online courses ◦ Degree in CS ◦ Growth Engineering skills - on the job • Experienced Software Engineer? ◦ Online courses ◦ Bootcamps, if switching domains
  14. Coursera Courses - core skills • Learning How To Learn

    • Fullstack web development specialization • Scala specialization • Java specialization • Python specialization • iOS specialization • Android specialization • Engineering leadership • SRE course • Cloud Platforms(AWS, Google Cloud) • Software Design and Architecture
  15. Coursera courses - Growth Eng skills • SEO • Recommender

    Systems • Data Warehousing and BI • Agile
  16. Resources • Andrew Chen’s blog • John Egan’s blog and

    here • Jeff Chang’s blog • Growth Engineering at Netflix • Books ◦ Zero to one ◦ Growth Engines ◦ Hacking Growth
  17. Growth Engineering vs Growth Hacking Growth Hacking Growth Engineering Growth

    Hacking is • identify low hanging fruits to creating awareness or lock in users to a product. • run quick experiments to test hypotheses about ways of growing user base. • use means to get temporary spikes in one of the growth metrics, like google ads. Growth Engineering is a method to • invent, build, manage and improve software, content, processes and organizations • to overcome poorly understood barriers to increase visitors, users and customers • through the application of science, mathematics, economic, social, psychological and practical knowledge • within the available budgets and capabilities.
  18. Webinar Notes • Customer Acquisition Cost • Customer Lifetime Value

    • Search Engine Optimization • A/B Testing