How Bloomberg’s engineers built a culture of knowledge sharing

Thousands of the company’s engineers, data scientists, designers, and developers have asked and answered questions about how things work inside their organization.

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Bloomberg is a company synonymous with finance, technology, and media. It has offices across the globe and more than 8,000 engineers working to support everything from real-time data feeds about moves in the financial markets and the company’s journalists to mobile apps and AI models that can analyze financial data and sentiment.

To help its employees collaborate and share knowledge, Bloomberg turns to Stack Overflow for Teams. Thousands of the company’s engineers, data scientists, designers, and developers have asked and answered questions about how things work inside their organization. The company also encourages employees to form Guilds, communities of interest that focus on a particular topic or technology. “Bloomberg focuses a lot on its engineers and its employees’ learning journey,” says Gulru Ustundag, an engineering manager. “I have seen so much support in my growth and learning.”

Mentorship and professional growth can happen through the format of questions and answers, especially at an organization pushing a rapid pace of innovation, where new tools and technologies are regularly being introduced and utilized in the company’s applications and infrastructure.

“Stack Overflow is a really critical part of how we learn, how we understand systems at Bloomberg. I literally used it this morning,” said El Wieschaus, Head of Product Development Experience. “I was looking for a particular error that I was getting as I was writing a little piece of code on the side. It becomes really important, especially for the newer people in our teams, as well as people working on new technologies that they may be less familiar with, to get started quickly and to find the answers to questions that they might have, where the answers are really well-thought-out.”

Over the years, the ability to find solutions when they are needed has helped speed the onboarding of new employees and the ability of existing engineering teams to work asynchronously across different continents has generated tremendous time savings. “Those kinds of connections ultimately do lead to real productivity gains,” said Wieschaus. “When people feel like they can reach out to another individual, when they feel connected as a community, when they feel comfortable asking questions, it means that we can move faster. It means that we can better serve our clients and build better products. It means we can get feedback faster, and ultimately, really helps our company thrive.”

Psychological safety allows Bloomberg employees to support one another and take risks, stretching their abilities in new directions. “Overall, this knowledge base and the ecosystem of Stack Overflow creates a culture of curiosity and openness and gives people comfort to be able to say, ‘I don't know.’ Which I think is really important in our learning,” says Ustundag. “Community is really important at Bloomberg. When you're stuck, you may ask a question to the people who are in proximity to you. But a place like Stack Overflow actually widens your reach and you're able to engage those who you wouldn’t otherwise connect with.”

Learn more about how Stack Overflow for Teams helps the world’s top companies share knowledge and improve developer productivity.

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