Starting career with Epic Systems

Originally posted on Quora (Link).

Question: How good is Epic Systems for starting a career as Software Engineer?

It's awesome. It's so good that it will blow your mind! Literally.

Join Epic in whatever way possible. You should, in fact, beg them to hire you.

Now, you write online tests, you appear in rigorous interviews and somehow you manage to be at your best in all of them. Then after you get selected among your friends who didn't get selected (you are already feeling proud about that!) and you start dreaming of your long wished American Dream which is soon going to be fulfilled, you fly off to join Epic Systems.

A few days have passed living your American Dream. You have got a good cubicle in office from where you can hear the birds chirping, see the leaves rustling in the wind and watch the azure cloudless sky on a bright spring day. And it hits you. You realize that you don't need anything else. You think your life is really Epic. 

Subsequently, you are made to believe that you are affecting the life of someone close to you. By all means. Whether you are writing the code that will eventually result in increased mortality[1] in a hospital - not because of your fault but of management fault or whether you are making a new inventory management that has been told by managers that it will make the life of doctors easier and you know deep down that it will only make the situation worse, you are doing a great work. You are getting good money for that, and who cares for anything before money. Whether you are, optimistically speaking, really creating an impact on American healthcare system by working day & night, and millions of Indians are dying every year due to the same technology not available here or those technologies are extremely priced by foreign vendors and most of the doctors in even first-tier cities can't afford them, you are doing a great work. Whether you are, hypothetically imagining after few years, now a manager who is leading multiple teams with a goal to change the way healthcare system is delivered in Chicago, Boston, Washington, Texas, New York, Los Angeles and so on and you do it successfully. You have always been hard working and passionate in whatever you do, and you are proud of it and this is the biggest achievement in your life. And while you were making America healthier, just few more millions died in Delhi, Mumbai, Lucknow, Chennai, Kolkata, Bangalore, kanpur, Guwahati, Ahmedabad and so on - but who cares about that! Who cares about building a scalable healthcare system for India! I will say your achievements are worth getting a medal here in India! 

During all those years at Epic, when you were coding (before becoming a manager)with an aim to change the healthcare in America, you were dealing with Electronic Medical Record (EMR) systems. You were programming using Cache[2], and you came to know eventually that it was inspired by MUMPS programming language. Oh wait, you didn't notice for long that all variables were in global scope (Pause for a sec, think, digest it - the living hell!) because you saw everyone around doing the same and you just followed the ant-odor-trails all those years. You remember now everyone saying back then that you are learning a lot from this (1960's) programming language, that this would carve your career and frame your future. And now you just cringe in horror! 

Wait, you wanted a serious answer? Oh, my bad! Never mind.


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