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I just graduated from college and got my very first job. I start my first day tomorrow and my boss just told me that I am going to work on a project to build a Spring Boot application.

I am absolutely scared because I won't be able to code anything at all when I come in to work tomorrow since I have no idea what Spring Boot is and I only know Java basics. As a result, I am afraid I might get in trouble for not starting on the project when I come in for my first day.

Is it OK if I learn Spring (such as going on internet tutorials, YouTube tutorials, reading articles on Spring, etc.) on my computer during that time in my office? If so, how long is it acceptable for me to spend time in office to learn that new thing? Or should I learn it outside of the office because my boss might not condone me taking office time to learn Spring?

I would love suggestions on how I can effectively acquire knowledge on this new technology and start working on the project.

closed as off-topic by mattnz, Andy, amon, Bart van Ingen Schenau, Christophe Sep 30 '18 at 12:37

  • This question does not appear to be about software engineering within the scope defined in the help center.
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    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because its really about workplace situation and has little to do with software engineering. it would be much better asked on Workplace.se – mattnz Sep 30 '18 at 4:06
  • Programmers became experts in the area when they were assigned to the project of area they know nothing about ;) – Fabio Oct 1 '18 at 18:20
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When you were hired, you provided a resume listing your skills. I hope for you, Spring Boot was not one of them. Therefore, (1) you were hired despite the lack of knowledge of this specific technology, and (2) you were assigned to the project anyway.

Independently of whether it was your boss or somebody else who did the interview:

  • The boss may be unaware that you don't have the required skills (either because the interviewer haven't communicated correctly your skills or because the boss haven't noticed or forgot the details),

  • Or the boss may be clearly aware of the fact that you haven't used Spring Boot before, and gave you the task anyway.

In both cases, you should be clear with your boss, and ask him what should you do.

Maybe he will tell you that he didn't know that you lack the skills, and give you a different project. Or he may invite you to learn the technology. Or ask somebody to train you and do a bunch of pair programming sessions. Or make you follow a paid training program. There is no way for you to guess his reaction, and you're not expected to guess.

If so how long is it acceptable for me to spend time in office to learn that new thing?

What is not acceptable is for you to decide how you will spend your time, given your specific position (things will change as you will gather more experience and more responsibilities). Don't do that. Talk to your boss.

Or should I learn it outside of the office because my boss might not condone me taking office time to learn Spring?

What you do outside the office hours is not the business of your boss. You're not expected to spend your free time learning technologies used by your company. You may learn something completely different. Or do tasks completely unrelated to development.

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