Several years ago, Capital One was building new features for its mobile app when the company encountered an issue.
There weren’t enough mobile engineers to tackle the job. So rather than scramble to hire new iOS developers externally, the organization decided to invest in their current engineers, including Manita Herlitz-Ferguson.
She went through extensive training, during which she shadowed an existing iOS development team. Herlitz-Ferguson said this immersive growth opportunity reflects the immense support she and other associates at Capital One receive from leaders.
“I’ve been empowered by managers who are truly invested in my growth, both professionally and personally,” she said. “These relationships have made my Capital One journey particularly fulfilling from a development perspective.”
“I’ve been empowered by managers who are truly invested in my growth.”
In the interview below, Herlitz-Ferguson shared more about how she has grown in her career at Capital One — and what she’s looking forward to accomplishing next.
I joined Capital One’s Analyst Development Program after graduating from Cornell University with a degree in operations research and information engineering. I spent a couple of years as an analyst performing big data analysis and building tools to automate reporting and monthly business processes. Upon reflecting on the work that I found energizing and fulfilling in my job, I I decided to pursue a role as a software engineer. I wanted to build tools and experiences for both Capital One’s associates and customers.
Before stepping into my current role, I spent more than seven years as an individual contributor, meaning I didn’t manage anyone, working on full-stack engineering teams — both mobile and web — to support the needs of our card customers. Currently, I lead two teams of software engineers.
How has Capital One helped you make progress toward your career goals?
Capital One’s culture of learning and development encourages me to continuously make progress toward my career goals. Leaders support me in taking on new challenges that broaden my skills and build versatile experience in many areas, including web development, iOS development, data engineering, microservice architecture and serverless computing.
“Leaders support me in taking on new challenges that broaden my skills and build versatile experience in many areas.”
What opportunities has Capital One provided you to grow professionally?
Capital One’s tuition assistance benefit helped me earn a master’s degree in computer science at the University of Chicago, and I was able to easily translate my new knowledge to my work.
I’ve had the opportunity to represent the company at several tech conferences, including Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference in San Jose in 2019, which is one of the most memorable learning experiences I’ve had. It was an incredible week filled with learning and hands-on sessions surrounding the latest tools and best practices for iOS development, and I brought back so much knowledge to influence and improve the way we build and test at Capital One.
I’ve participated in learning and development opportunities through Capital One’s business resource groups like Women in Tech and Blacks in Tech. These two business resource groups have conferences that consistently provide wonderful networking and great education regarding technical and leadership skills.
How are managers involved in the career development of direct reports?
Capital One encourages regular open dialogue between direct reports and managers about career aspirations. The company values actionable feedback as part of this, which has been a key component of the successful manager-associate relationships I've had. As a manager, I try to understand each of my direct reports’ individual career goals and provide the right feedback and opportunities to allow them to grow in ways that excite them.
How has joining Capital One positively impacted your professional journey?
Capital One offers me countless learning opportunities, including classroom training, on-the-job-experiences, conferences and mentorship. I’ve worked with incredibly bright technologists and amazing leaders, and I continue to be inspired by the people around me.
“I’ve worked with incredibly bright technologists and amazing leaders, and I continue to be inspired by the people around me.”
What are you most excited to accomplish next?
I’m really excited about the new experiences we’re building for our customers in premium products. I’m also excited about building and developing great teams within the organization as we continue to innovate and push the boundaries of technology at Capital One