Interview with Project Manager Jonas
Jonas is one of the many friendly faces in our company. In a short interview, he will tell us how he came to Soloplan and started his interesting job as a project manager in the Customer Solution Management (CSM) department and what his everyday work looks like.
Hello Jonas, thank you for taking the time for this interview. Let’s start with your career. How did you end up working as a project manager at Soloplan?
After school, I studied economics in Nuremberg and Würzburg. While I was working on my master’s thesis, I came into contact with logistics for the first time. Upon completing my studies, with my master’s degree secured, love led me to move to the beautiful Allgäu region. After a short application process, I knew right away that the interface between logistics and IT was just right for me and that I wanted to work at Soloplan. I benefitted from extensive training in project management. I accompanied many different colleagues in the sales department, took part in many Academies and training sessions, and then was allowed to work on projects of my own relatively quickly.
Well, we all know that the Allgäu region is beautiful.
What are your everyday tasks in your position?
A normal day in the office starts around 7 am for me. That is when I get a quick overview of the current situation, get updates from and update my colleagues and take a look at what is on the agenda for the day. Around 9 am, the first meetings usually start. There, we talk about everything that needs to be customised in the CarLo software for the respective company so that, in the end, everything works perfectly for all of our customers. If these discussions are to be more detailed, we also carry out on-site workshops with customers.
When we are on site with customers, we try get as much information as we can throughout the day in order to understand how they work and how the implementation can be carried out best. Based on this information, we define in specifications sheets which adjustments need to be made and how our software CarLo is to be used.
What does the balance between preparation in the office and working on site with customers look like?
My colleagues in the CSM department are, without a doubt, the ones who are mainly in charge of configuring and explaining the software. They are usually on site with the customers for the training sessions. For smaller configurations, this can sometimes be done remotely, but, in the most cases, my colleagues visit the customers for several days to weeks and train the CarLo users. As the requirements are so complex, especially with big customers, the system is adjusted on site. Maintaining an overview of the different project phases, the technical requirements and the status of the implementation is an important part of my job. I visit customers on site about once a month to carry out two- to five-day workshops.
Which of the qualities that you had before you started working at Soloplan are particularly useful in your everyday work now?
I am good at working with Excel; I already enjoyed it during my studies. I also visited a few courses and can apply what I learned very frequently from a technical standpoint. In project management, it is especially important to have good people skills, to be able to adapt to new situations and to take the customers by the hand and show them what needs to happen for the project to be completed successfully as quickly as possible.
Soloplan has customers all over the world–what do you enjoy most about international work?
This June, a customer from Namibia took an important step in a project, and one of my colleagues from South Africa and I had the honour of being on site for this step. The collaboration with the different cultures and international talents there worked wonderfully. This kind of teamwork leads to a faster execution and greater customer satisfaction. Accompanying and managing projects like this is very fun, and it is encouraging to see how motivated your colleagues are and that you are making a lot of progress.
That sounds like great teamwork. What would you say characterises your team?
I would say that we have a lot of team spirit. Of course, this is the case in other departments as well, but we need to familiarise ourselves with every project, and colleagues that make this effort are not to be taken for granted. I am very glad to be working in such a helpful team.
Thank you, Jonas, for this informative interview and the great insight into your everyday work. We wish you all the best for your future at Soloplan and even more successful projects.