your first month of joining a big tech firm will just be learning about the product/application they are building. you will get assigned a buddy (senior dev) to help you navigate the early days. going through KT (Knowledge Transfer) after KT about software use-cases, features and how it provides value to the customer (be it businesses or end customers). you will be just going through them after the first 3 or 4 without paying much attention (because who wants to know what each button/panel/tab in this page exactly does right?)
Pro tip: Just ask your buddy, which part of the software you will be working on and pay close attention and ask the question while that KT session (or just record the meeting like a sane person).
after KTs are over you will start attending respective scrum/stand-up. where you will get your first task (mostly in form of a Jira ticket). it will be a very simple HTML/CSS task like “center a div” or “change background color” (cliché right?). and you get more than 2 whole days to fix it ( free time for gaming I guess ). but soon you realize the complex process surrounding making a change to production-level software. you have to update Jira with appropriate tags, status and comments. make the change. validate on development environments. writing test cases for coverage. raise a PR. making sure it passes all existing CI/CD checks. getting PR approved and merged from a team member and finally verifying change on production and closing the Jira task.
It all seems hectic at first. but you start to get accustomed to the whole process and doing it in minutes instead of days.
First Real Project
slowly as you are finally getting aware of the whole development process through fixing small alignment issues to handling major customer requests. you will get your first real project. It will be a completely new feature they are adding to the product and will take few months to build. here your preconception of the development process will break again. as more teams get involved. engineering management, product management, legal, design, documentation, QA, security. and you as the feature owner need to coordinate between all of them to ensure a smooth release. then comes end-to-end automated testing ( and flaky selenium tests 😥). and within few months without you realizing the feature is live and actual customers are using it.
Congratulation! now you are as much part of the product as the next guy.