New Layer, Inc.newlayer.info
Introduce us to your team
Hi! We are a small fully remote team working throughout the West Coast of North America. Andy and Mehdi design and build the product full-time, while Shen wrangles all things community.
Andy and Mehdi first met in London while working together at Facebook, and became fast friends after discovering their shared love of Kendama. They would later meet Shen after discovering her intriguing lowercase profile on read.cv.
What is the product you’re building?
Our flagship product is a professional network called read.cv, or just CV for short. We like to call it a 'Show don't tell' professional network, meaning we encourage people to show off their side projects, writing, and talks, alongside their work experience and education.
What does your team's product development process look like?
We have a clear product roadmap, but as a startup we know the path to getting there can have a few twists and turns. Our typical product development cycle looks something like this:
Define the successful outcome of the product
Use Figma to loosely sketch out the key components
Design, prototype, and iterate in code
Beta test with a small subset of users
Repeat until we meet our successful outcomes
In terms of workflow we only have one weekly scheduled meeting on Monday mornings to sync up on what we'll be working on for the week. The rest of the week is managed ad hoc in our Discord.
What does your stack look like?
Tell us about your design system
Okay to be totally transparent our design system doesn't really exist. Our Figma is disorganized. Layers don't have names. Files are untitled. Stuff gets put in the first page that opens when Figma finally loads. Essentially, we use Figma as a sketchbook.
If you'd like to take a peek behind the scenes, here's our first Figma file started back in August 2020.
But the source of truth lies in our react components, which is where most of our high fidelity design work gets done. We have a color system, animation and spacing constants, etc. We just don't spend a lot of time recreating our stuff in Figma because at our tiny scale it doesn't make sense.
Share an interesting side project from a team member
Here's a cool side project from Mehdi — Back in 2015 Apple had released beta versions for watchOS 2 that let you run native apps on the watch. As part of a 10-hour hackathon, Mehdi and fellow developer Lior Tubi thought it would be fun to port Doom over to it.
Of course they got things working with a version of nDoom, and the project got written up in the Verge. To take things even further Mehdi also ended up porting it over to the AppleTV.
What type of music does your team listen to?
Our team made this playlist for you. Please enjoy some big choons you might hear at our respective home offices. Jah!
What advice would you give to people who want to join your team?
Our team is small and not currently in the hyper-growth phase of a start up. But that doesn't mean we don't ever have opportunities to collaborate.
So far we've worked exclusively with people within our read.cv community, like Adam Eastburn who simply replied to one of our newsletters with a the casual proposal to "collaborate sometime". He ended up doing our amazing product illustrations along with a killer tote bag and stickers.