A day in the life of a Product Owner – From Data Analytics Engineer to Product Owner
by Bart Hoskens (Product Owner)
by Bart Hoskens (Product Owner)
Meet Bart Hoskens, a Product Owner at our Hasselt office. He is a Chemical Engineer who joined our team in 2017 as a Data Analytics Engineer.
I started working as a Data Analytics Engineer, helping our customers to understand how our software works and how they can apply it. But in March 2021 I had the opportunity to transition to another position within the company. Now I work as a Product Owner, which is more focused in software engineering. This is a new function for me, but since I already knew the product, this was a nice transition for me. Especially because I can work on new challenges. In this role I get to help the customers by introducing new features. I also help our Software Engineers to translate what I have been writing as new functionalities for the product. So, I still get to help our customers, but from a different perspective.
Internally we have a support ticket system, so the first thing I do in the morning is to check if there is an issue that I would need to focus on. Then I have a daily stand-up with my team because they are working with Sprints. So, we check how well this is going to understand what actions need to be taken or not.
My role has a lot of variation, so it depends on the day. For me there’s still a learning curve in this new position. Part of my role is trying to see for new functionalities, and to write requirements, so that the software engineers know what to write. Part of it involves trying to investigate what our customers want. For example, our Data Engineers keep a list of what customers want exactly and based on that information I write the new requirements.
Part of my day entails communicating with other teams within TrendMiner to align on certain details because some domains interact with each other.
On a weekly basis, we have meetings with the Product team where we propose our ideas. When we write something new, we check with them to get their feedback on those proposals too.
Every now and then, when a production issue occurs, like a bug for example. We receive that information, so we must do a follow-up and prioritize with our team. We check what needs to be fixed and where should we focus our attention first.
I always try to end the day with a bit of quieter work where I can focus on my own tasks. For example, by analyzing something I have been working on. Other times, I might have a meeting scheduled for the end of the day. But normally, I tend to check if there is a task that I didn’t finish that day, so I can work on it the next day.
I like that now I have the chance to work in a different role, so I get to continue learning and growing within the company. Also, that you have some say in what TrendMiner is going to be. For example, you can help the team to determine what are the best ways to improve the product and the user experience.
I also enjoy working with my colleagues. We have a friendly and collaborative atmosphere where everybody gets along with each other.
I am still getting used to this new role. Getting up to date with the domains that our team is responsible for has been challenging. So, I am still learning about better ways to approach and solve an issue. Also, getting everyone aligned because the customers have their own wishes, but so our data engineers who are in contact with the customers. It can be challenging because we must consider the functions that the product already has and the ones we would like to implement.
You must have an analytical mindset and be someone who likes to find better ways to make improvements and find solutions. Also, you must be customer driven to be able to align the end-users’ needs with different stakeholders. So, I would say that if you are looking for a challenging role with a lot of variation, this would be a great option for you.
What I love about TrendMiner is that I can combine my knowledge in science (as a chemical engineer) with data. My previous jobs were more science related. I used to work a lot with data. I did some self-studying on better ways to work with data and how to automate steps with programming. So, for me it was exciting to know that TrendMiner combined these two. I really like that you can help to have an impact on the industry. But also, that you have the opportunity to talk to a lot of smart people in the company and learn from them.
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