Why is a technology consultancy such an exciting environment? How does professional development work - especially for women - at Zielpuls? And which technology trends in the area of digitalization are currently exciting? We asked Teresa, Senior Lead Technology Pioneer, these and a few more questions!
Teresa, you've been with Zielpuls for over 6 years now. When you look back on your time here, what has changed over the years?
Three things - the project environment, the Zielpuls team and me as a person.
When I started here at Zielpuls, I had already gained my first professional experience. At that time, the Zielpuls team consisted of 80 employees and we consultants mainly worked on projects directly at the customer's site. Since we were almost right in the middle at the customer, we identified and networked strongly with our customers and their needs. At that time, I was involved in the automotive industry, especially in IT test management, and was in contact with many customer across departments.
Due to legal regulations, our primary workplace then changed from the customer to the Zielpuls premises. Consequently, the professional exchange within the Zielpuls team increased even more and we developed the ability to digitally bring this expert knowledge and our services into the customer projects. The team became larger and more diverse, partly due to the new location in Wolfsburg.
It was a similar story for me as a person: I immersed myself in new subject areas, such as the markets for household appliances (white goods) and medical technology and the disciplines of E/E and innovation management.
Last year, our way of working changed again, with the radical move to working from home and therefore fully digital collaboration with our customers and additionally now also in the Zielpuls team. Through the merger with Accenture, we are also networking with teams of experts worldwide. It is already noticeable that this allows us to respond more flexibly to customer requirements and offer a broader range of services. And I have also developed further, becoming a multi-project manager and a sparring partner for methodical approaches to problems and unclear situations, among other things.
The past 6 years have shown me that our project environment, the Zielpuls team and I as a person are in a constant state of change, which means that we are constantly acquiring new knowledge and skills. For this reason, I am convinced that all future changes will ultimately benefit our customers and us.
At that time, you moved from beeing an internal data warehouse specialist at a jewelry manufacturer to Zielpuls. What was the attraction of technology consulting for you?
Personally, a high degree of variety and the creation of comprehensive added value are important to me. In my former role as a Big Data specialist in an international corporation, I kept coming up against limits, whether it was departmental responsibilities, political management decisions, or long-established routines.
At Zielpuls or in technology consulting, I found the opportunity to repeatedly face new professional challenges and specialist topics without having to change my employer every time. Internally at Zielpuls, I am a trainer, recruiter, coach as well as mentor and have acquired expertise in workshop techniques, test management, E/E software development process and in many other topics. Thus, I can combine many different roles with this job description.
What is it like to work with your customers as a Senior Lead Technology Pioneer?
For me, it is important that we meet at eye level.
My customer contacts are, among other things, experts and specialists within the company for which they work. As an external consultant, I have a generalist understanding of technology and the ability to lead methodically through a decision-making process.
Only the cooperation and thus the unification of both aspects always leads to a successful result for both sides. It is not about diagnosing a standard solution from the outside or being told what to do by the customer, but rather about recognizing each other's strengths and using them accordingly.
This principle guides me, even if it is not always feasible. Nevertheless, just the recollection of it brings me back on track in sometimes tricky situations.
What is it like to have a career as a woman at Zielpuls?
Like for everyone else at Zielpuls.
I feel supported and challenged to the same extent as everyone else in the company. It is the interaction between the individual HR developers and employees that determines how each career develops.
In my experience, there are many options at Zielpuls to shape my career in a self-determined way within the realm of what is possible. And when I've been too hesitant to break out of my comfort zone, at least my previous HR developers have always been there to either give me the necessary nudge or back me up.
The individual path is rarely comparable to that of others. At least on my career path at Zielpuls, I have always received the appropriate appreciation for the commitment I have shown and worked on.
Which technology trends in the area of digitization do you find most exciting at the moment?
I am currently following two trends with great interest: first and foremost, (big) data, and secondly, the requirements and influences on people that are changing as a result of digitization.
For me, data is becoming a new asset in companies.
Data is the basic resource that opens up enormous potential for companies, be it increasing transparency, creating digital models, recognizing forecasts and trends, leveraging efficiencies and much more.
Two factors play a key role here: firstly, data is tied to the time factor and therefore quickly loses value; secondly, and more importantly, its informative value and quality depends on its degree of cleansing. Any report, digital model or software application is worthless or misleading if it is based on incorrect or outdated data.
Data cleansing requires in-depth technical and process knowledge, which in my opinion is only available to those who create and influence the data, namely all employees of the company. This is where the second point of my interest comes in: In my opinion, in the near future all job descriptions in companies will need a fundamental understanding of the asset resource data in order to be able to fully exploit the potential that data brings with it. For this reason, I support the thesis that digitization should really be understood as an enormous education offensive instead of a purely technical wave of implementation.
Both topics are gaining momentum, and I am pleased to have been involved from the very beginning and to be able to help shape the trends. In any case, it remains exciting and certainly instructive!
Thank you Teresa for your detailed answers, the insight into your professional development and your tasks at Zielpuls!
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