Graduated as a master in facility management, I started my professional journey as a consultant in FMIS (Facility Management Information Software) implementations. Rapidly I became more interested in complex and disruptive software integration and completed projects as a functional consultant in BIM (Building Information Management) and PIM (Product Information Management) for several medium and large corporations. In April I started as a Project Manager in Salesforce at Cloud Innovation and it's been an interesting journey so far!
Cloud Innovation asked me some questions about my first weeks at ‘the office’, so here we go!
You already work at Cloud Innovation for several weeks now, but you must have met us somewhere for the first time. When and where did you get a first glimpse of Cloud Innovation?
My first glimpse of Cloud Innovation was through a Linkedin message. HR had seen my profile and made a proposal to join the team. My first job interview was around late January. The impressive headquarters location (Ghelamco Arena in Ghent) looked already like a cosy and wonderful place to work. During the interview it became clear that Cloud Innovation had a motivated and constructive opinion about company culture and professional services towards customers. This triggered me to become a Cloudblazer and join the team!
Your first day at the office was the 20th of April 2020. How did this day go and what did you do?
In february of 2020 we had an agreement on the starting date (20th of april) so I was really looking forward to getting started at Cloud Innovation. But in between those two dates something ‘weird’ and devastating happened: the spreading of the new Coronavirus and lockdowns across Europe. Honestly, I was a bit worried how my first weeks at Cloud Innovation would be without seeing a single colleague in real life. But I have to say that it went great and smoothly. Luckily, my work materials such as my laptop were directly provided for me on the first day and we started off the day by going through the Cloud Innovation onboarding document. Although the lockdown at that time, the onboarding continued as normal with a first online Weekly Standup Cross meeting with the whole Cloud Innovation team. It was great to have a first glimpse of the entire team. The first weeks, colleagues were there to help me out through conference meetings. Currently, we are all slowly coming back to the office for a few days a week, so I'm happy to have a real life conversation with some team members (on the required distance of course). I’m looking forward to my first team event or after work drinks, but we will give it some time...
You are now a Cloudblazer, but how did the integration with our team go?
Like stated before, the first weeks were completely through conference calls from home. Not the ideal way to get to know all the Cloudblazers, but we have surely made the best of it. Cloud Innovation gives high value to frequent communication about external and internal projects, so it didn't take long to introduce myself and say ‘Hi’ to all my new colleagues.
After a short onboarding period, you were immediately part of some of our projects. But what was the first project you worked on and what was your role in the project team?
My first project, and currently working on, is the integration of Contract Management in Salesforce at Elindus NV. With the great support of my colleague Dimitri Suls, i’m analysing the client’s needs for the completion of a Statement of Work as a Project Manager. Looking forward to the implementation phase to get a hands-on Salesforce solution for our customer.
Until now, what was the most challenging task you needed to execute?
Before I started at Cloud Innovation, my Salesforce knowledge was non-existent. So you can definitely describe that as the most challenging task. Lukely, Salesforce created something like Trailhead, where learning the tool becomes fun and valuable. After a couple of weeks I obtained my administrator certificate and I hope to continue to expand my Salesforce knowledge at the same pace.
At the start of a new adventure, you mostly create some expectations. What did you expect at the beginning and to what extent did Cloud Innovation contribute to these expectations?
In my previous job I had a more hybrid task, being functional consultant and project manager. After 8 years as a functional consultant, the time felt right to focus on the project management part and this is exactly what Cloud Innovation has in store for me. It felt great that Cloud Innovation immediately benefited from my experience and viewed my input on their internal project flow very valuable. I am grateful they are able to fastly commid to several Salesforce implementations as a project manager.
What are your ambitions at Cloud Innovation?
First of all, I aim to conduct a great communication and workflow between the customer and the development team. This will definitely take some time and experience. Later, I would love to finetune the internal project process together with Cloud Innovation to lift our Salesforce implementations to the next level.
After these several weeks working at Cloud Innovation, what was the biggest surprise so far?
For a rather small team like Cloud Innovation, the skills and knowledge of the Salesforce platform are at a high level. We definitely strive to make every project a success for the customer and have great focus on commitment. I would not completely describe this as a ‘surprise’, but it is definitely beyond my expectations.