Speaker: Dushyant Sabharwal, Founding Engineer, Levels.fyi
Dushyant Sabharwal: Hey everyone. My name is Dushyant. I'm a founding engineer at Levels.fyi. Levels is a platform which helps professionals make better career decisions. Levels is visited by more than 2 million people across the globe every month. Our site helps people by providing insights into salaries, career ladders and we also have now jobs. You can search jobs by compensation data, by benefits, etc.
What led you to use Google Sheets and Google Forms?
Dushyant Sabharwal: When we were initially building Levels.fyi, we were not sure whether the site will be loved by users. So, we did not want to invest too much into technology to test our ideas. So, we gravitated to Google Sheets and Google Forms because both the tools are super easy to use.
Dushyant Sabharwal: We use both these tools for our internal operations and also for some of our features on the live site. For internal operations we use Google Sheets for data analysis. Like on Google Sheets, you can draw some nice charts if you have the data already imported into Google Sheets.
Dushyant Sabharwal: And we use Google Forms externally, for example, if you want to get feedback from our users. So you can, you know, have a nice Google Form where the users can get directed to and provide information.
Can you please walk us through the process of how you implemented Google Sheets and Google Forms to begin building your website?
Dushyant Sabharwal: We use Google Sheets as our data back end. So all the data which was coming from the site, we were storing into a Google Sheets sheet. And then, the initial version of the site was just a Google Forms um, U.I. And Google Sheets has a really powerful API. We were using that API to query the data and then we were building JSON files and then those JSON files were loaded onto the site for you know, displaying the data back to the user. Since we did not have our own back end, so Google Sheets really helped us you know, building our own temporary back end to, you know, support the prototype. And once you know, the site gained traction, and we became popular, we switched to you know, a more robust back end, by using database and an API. But Google Sheets and Google Forms really helped us build you know, prototype in a lean manner and launch and test our ideas.
What were the advantages to you, your team and/or organization after using Sheets and Forms?
Dushyant Sabharwal: Both Google Forms and Google Sheets have been pretty advantageous for us. The two main advantages which I see is like the first one, both the tools are super easy to use. They are pretty well integrated into the Google Workspace suite. You can control granular permissions, you can share specific files with specific people. The second main advantage which I see is like, both the tools they allow us to build like rapid prototypes. In fact, the initial version of the site was built using these two tools. So for us, both the tools they help us save a lot of time by not investing too much into other technologies.
How would you define the use of Google Sheets and Google Forms to establish early website development using 5 words or less?
Dushyant Sabharwal: Launch fast, get feedback and [inaudible].