2014 European Tour – Paris

March 12, 2014

After a great day in Frankfurt, I was just winding down for the day and enjoying a fine German beer, when in California the team was just starting their day.  And of course the calls started coming in from everyone who thought I would be starting my working day as well – the perils of the time differences when you are traveling!

Day two of my European tour began in Paris. First on the agenda was a meeting with our customer PIXID, market leaders for internet-based workflow and document management services to services organizations using temporary staff. Today 300 enterprises, 700 SMBs and 6,500 agencies, representing 90 percent of the temp activity in France, are connected to PIXID services. The company has decided to integrate Pentaho Business Analytics with its collaborative “e-temp” platform to offer its clients and agency networks the ability to view advanced performance metrics as well as detailed interactive analysis. It was a great meeting and fantastic to see thought leaders like PIXID embedding our analytics capability as a means of further differentiating their own products and helping them to expand globally into new markets.

We had an interesting discussion on the benefits that big data technology can bring to this market, along with the complexities of doing so in a regulated environment – and one where data security and governance is of paramount importance.

The regulations for how data can be stored, shared and analyzed differ across all of the countries in Europe, which is a further challenge — But also an opportunity.

Next up was a very enjoyable lunch. It would be rude to come to Paris and not partake in the cuisine!

I then spent some of the afternoon with a top-tier global consultancy that is investing heavily in the provision of Business Services.  They are providing a service into the banking sector, which increasingly faces the challenge of meeting the needs of the regulator without impacting the ability of the business to innovate, invest and deliver client satisfaction and profitability.  Banks have to drive unnecessary cost out of their business processes to be able to do this. This type of challenge is tailor made for emerging Big Data technologies. I look forward to following-up on this project since many of the leading global banks will soon be using Pentaho.

Next stop Portugal and spending some time with our incredibly talented WebDetails team!

Quentin


2014 European Tour – Frankfurt

March 11, 2014

My week in Europe is off to a great start. Yesterday, I was in Frankfurt, Germany with back-to-back meetings with partners and customers. It was nice to start the day off meeting with IT Novum, a Pentaho partner of four years.

It has been good to hear about the big data market really gathering pace here in Germany, and that there is such widespread interest. One of the markets that is strongest for Pentaho in Germany is the embedded analytics market. While several Pentaho team members were busy yesterday not too far away in Hanover, Germany speaking about big data and embedded analytics at CeBIT, I had a chance to meet with our OEM partner Godesys  and learn about how they embed Pentaho into their full ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) solution – which they have deployed to an impressive 600 customers.

I was impressed by our partner Inovex who is also working on some fantastic big data customer deployments.  It was great to hear a few excellent big data Hadoop case studies including one of the largest media companies in Germany using Pentaho and Hadoop to analyze customer behavior patterns across all channels, particularly web and television.

Next up…Paris!

Quentin


2014 European Tour – 4 cities, 5 days

March 10, 2014

This week I am excited to be in Europe visiting Germany, Portugal, France and London.  My schedule is packed full of meetings with customers, partners and analysts, and I am of course looking forward to spending some time with the team in our newly established London office.

It is a little over a year since my last trip to Europe, when I was impressed by the enthusiasm that I saw for big data. At the time I predicted that big data would start to enter mainstream production in 2013 and there is clear evidence of this with Pentaho’s fast growing EMEA business and rapidly expanding regional team.

On this trip, a few of the companies that I will be speaking with include a major British telecoms company, one of the world’s largest interactive advertising agencies and a national bank. I am interested to hear how they  – and others – are utilizing data and analytics to drive their businesses forward and benefit from innovative new revenue streams. It is always good to find out about how execution of big data analytics is working out for users in practice.

I will also be catching up with some familiar faces from my last visit, including Brian McKenna from ComputerWeekly.

It’s going to be a roller coaster of a trip and I can’t wait to see everyone, Europe, here I come!

Quentin


International Women’s Day – Software Developer

March 7, 2014

As part of our series highlighting women in tech for International Women’s Day on March 8th we are we are featuring Gretchen Moran, Software Developer at Pentaho. Gretchen’s title may be ‘Software Developer,’ however, over her nine years at Pentaho, she has worn many technical hats to help lead the company to where it is today!

Rosanne, Sarah, Michelle and Gretchen are just a few of the impressive women that work at Pentaho. Our goal with this series is to promote the theme of this year’s International Women’s Day…to inspire change. We encourage you to share their stories with girls and women to encourage them to become more interested in STEM or to hopefully bring more strong and smart women to the tech industry.

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Gretchen Moran, Software Developer at Pentaho

What do you do at Pentaho? How long have you been at Pentaho?
I have been developing software in the warehousing and business analytics space for 15 years, 9 of them with Pentaho.

I have held many different roles through my many years at Pentaho. When I haven’t been coding, I have worked with our talented open source community, managed the technical side of larger Pentaho customer accounts as a Technical Account Manager, and consulted on numerous internal projects.

My current role is software developer for Pentaho Data Integration and Pentaho’s Big Data stack of technology.

What inspired you to want you to work in technology?
I have always wanted to push boundaries. In college, I wanted to see how far I could take my interests in math and science. My college career began in the 90’s, and computing and technology provided a great landscape to test my skills.

As I have grown in my career, working in technology has given me the challenges and change I need to stay engaged in my work. It has also allowed the flexibility I desire to be a great mom.

How do you think the industry could inspire more girls and women towards careers in technology? 
I think we need to talk less about inspiring women toward technology, and talk more about how a career in technology can fuel any passion a person might have.  Are you passionate about the medical field? Innovate some tech that will make medical records handling more efficient and private. Are you passionate about drama and acting? Pursue a career in graphics and animation; filmmaking today is as much technology as it is human resources.  In my experience, the passion doesn’t lie in the code; it lies in the industries you are coding for.

What advice do you have for women wanting to become a software developer?

Engage! The mainstreaming of open source makes this easier than ever today. Find a tutorial, get some code under your belt, and then start contributing to a project that means something to you. The best part is that there is a project for everyone. From open source medical records systems that serve third world countries to smart phone apps that help you find great shoes. It’s all out there, anyone can contribute, and there are few barriers to entry.

The formal education for computer science does not need to be intimidating. As with any worthy endeavor, it requires focus and hard work, and is absolutely within reach if you are passionate about the subject. The key to finding passion in technology for me was realizing that no subject is outside the technology realm.

Confession – I am not a code junky. A new API or performance progress does not excite me. I get excited when a customer wins based on Pentaho solutions that revealed a market differentiator for them. I get excited when I see Pentaho Community Edition implementations powering countries and organizations that would otherwise be shut out of the business analytics value proposition.

I’ve had the privilege of giving this advice to many different demographic and age groups. I recently spoke to a computer club at a local middle school, and a week later gave the same talk to a house full of single moms in a transitional program. Technology from an open perspective is a meritocracy upon entry; it’s up to the entrant to determine how far they will take it. That advice applies equally to boys AND girlsJ

What is a favorite memory you have about Pentaho?
My favorite memories will always be the first year(s) of Pentaho. There is a special energy that a company has as a startup. Late nights, bean bags for office chairs, and a few energetic developers working toward a common vision of disrupting the business intelligence industry is a wonderful thing I’ve been privileged to be a part of.  I love that even as we have grown, we have kept this energy and passion for what we do as a company.

Fun Fact about you. 
I love Christian mission work! I have served in New Orleans and Guatemala and have contributed to missions in Central America and Africa for the last five years.

I also have three of the greatest kids EVER… if I do say soJ


International Women’s Day – Product Management

March 6, 2014

As part of our series highlighting women in tech for International Women’s Day we are featuring Michelle Bradbury, Director of Product Management at Pentaho.

Our goal with this series is to promote the theme of this year’s International Women’s Day…to inspire change. We encourage you to share this story and help our effort to bring more women into the field of technology.

Michelle Bradbury, Director of Product Management at Pentaho

Michelle Bradbury, Director of Product Management at Pentaho

What do I do at Pentaho?
I am the Director of Product Management. I work with my team to create and deliver features that will make our product compelling in the market place. I have been at Pentaho for over two years and in the technology industry for over 18 years including companies like CapitalOne, Fujitsu, and Microsoft.

What inspired you to work in technology?
My interest in technology from the beginning was the power of data. Coming from a marketing background, I Initially had interest in utilizing data to try and understand customers motivations and buying behavior. That turned into a long career in data warehousing and business analytics.

How do you think the industry could inspire more girls and women?
There are so few areas in today’s world that aren’t impacted by technology. I think the industry should provide more insight into how technology impacts areas of interest for a large percentage of girls and women. Examples could include electronic planning for better family organization or the tech behind purchasing at online fashion retailers like ideeli and Modcloth (both Pentaho customers). The possibilities are truly endless.

The role of a product manager is really all about breaking boundaries.  It is being able to see what is relevant today and dreaming up what will be relevant tomorrow.  The best advice I have for girls and women seeking a product management role is to stay in the forefront of an industry that interest them. Understand how technology can better that industry, and look for technical opportunities to make that happen.

Favorite memory about Pentaho?
Taking my team to play trampoline dodgeball.  It was a great opportunity to relax while hurling nerf balls at top speed at one another.

Fun fact about me.
I have a credit on IMDB.


International Women’s Day – Scrum Master

March 5, 2014

As part of our series highlighting women in tech for International Women’s Day we are featuring Sarah Baca, Scrum Mater at Pentaho.

Our goal with this series is to promote the theme of this year’s International Women’s Day…to inspire change. We encourage you to share this story and help our effort to bring more women into the field of technology.

Sarah Baca, Scrum Master at Pentaho

Sarah Baca, Scrum Master at Pentaho

What do you do at Pentaho? How long have you been at Pentaho?
I have been at Pentaho for two years and am the Scrum Master for Engineering. I am responsible for helping our six teams coordinate, communicate, and follow the Agile Scrum framework. To learn what Scrum is read this.

What inspired you to want you to work in technology?
I’ve always been interested in technology. I like to see how technology connects people and allows them to learn from each other. Just 10 years ago it took a  lot of effort to connect with someone with a similar interest. Now, you can go online in an instant and find hundreds of people with just a few clicks. The people on the Scrum teams come from all over the world and they learn from each other constantly. I also really love watching the Software Development Lifecycle. It fascinates me to think that a group of people can create something  amazing out of thin air.

How do you think the industry could inspire more girls and women towards careers in technology? What advice do you have for women wanting to become a Scrum Master?
I think you need to follow your passions, whatever those are. Explore and investigate what is out there and don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t, for any reason, especially because you’re a girl. I hope that as women become more involved in technology industries that they move into leadership positions and mentor women just entering the field. To me, nothing can replace that connection with someone else and seeing that they are in the trenches, constantly growing and learning and then passing that on.

What is a favorite memory you have about Pentaho?
I have so many awesome memories working at Pentaho. I think my favorite memory is when I won the President’s Award at the All Hands Company meeting this past January. That was such a tremendous honor. And, in typical hilarious Pentaho fashion, one of the big wigs said, “There’s no check in there, Sarah, don’t bother looking.” We are always laughing at work, and I love that about Pentaho.

Fun Fact about you.
I’m a stepmom of three and mom of three so that means I am regularly wrangling six kids. It makes six Scrum teams look like a piece of cake. ;-)


Pentaho Supports International Women’s Day 2014

March 5, 2014

On average, the percentage of women in the tech field is 12.9%. We at Pentaho are proud to share that we are not your average company and 23% of our workforce are women – almost twice the industry average!

With International Women’s Day approaching on March 8th, we wanted to take time to support this important day and its 2014 theme of INSPIRING CHANGE.

This week we will be highlighting women at Pentaho, what they do, how they got there and how we can inspire more girls and women to get involved in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) and seek out jobs in technology.

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Rosanne Saccone, Chief Marketing Officer at Pentaho

The first woman we are highlighting is Pentaho’s Chief Marketing Officer, Rosanne Saccone.

What do you do at Pentaho? How long have you been at Pentaho?
I am the Chief Marketing Officer and have been at Pentaho for over a little over two years.  I am responsible for all marketing at Pentaho, including our brand, product and solution marketing, corporate communications, and demand generation for the company worldwide.  I have been in the technology industry for over 25 years holding senior roles at technology companies such as HP, BEA Systems, Olliance and PivotLink.

What inspired you to want you to work in technology?
I love the pace of innovation and expectations of achievement in high tech. Although some might consider it a ‘macho’ industry, I find it an awesome place for strong women who like to compete and win. An industry that is a match for women who are great team players and are inspired by driving change that truly does impact the way the world works. If you are consistently focused on achieving results that are measurable, over time you will be rewarded in this industry — because the tech companies that eventually win have the best people, and many of the best people happen to be women. I’ve been in many different roles and functions in high tech companies, and this focus on striving for excellence was a common factor that has inspired me to reach further and try harder to help my organizations win.

How do you think the industry could inspire more girls and women towards careers in technology? 
I think it begins at school — we need to create an environment where girls and young women are encouraged to think differently and actively engage in learning about math and science concepts.  We need to make sure we showcase that technology is cool, and that the tech industry will embrace girls and women who want to change the game. It is also important to make sure that a well-rounded education includes the ability to communicate clearly (reading and writing skills), and embraces not just rote memorization of math and science concepts but teaches people problem solving and to think about problems from different angles.

We can sponsor internships for young women to experience the working environments at successful high tech companies.  We can also emphasize that there are many different roles within high tech companies where women can be successful — across all departments, as individual contributors, managers, and executives. On this note, there are currently several job openings at Pentaho and stay tuned for internship openings – help us build upon our 23% female workforce!

What is a favorite memory you have about Pentaho?
Probably the “all nighter” the marketing team spent getting everything ready to launch our v5 product.  Because we are fearless (!!), we decided to launch a completely new brand, completely new website, and a completely re-designed product all in the space of a couple of months.  Everyone pulled together to make it happen — making smart decisions quickly, collaborating as needed to get alignment on goals, getting creative on the content and programs that were required to get results from all the activity.  I’ll never forget the feeling of triumph and satisfaction as our extended Pentaho team worked together to resolve the remaining issues at one in the morning PT just ahead of our 2 am launch. Interestingly, most of the key leaders of the team happen to be women — head of product marketing, head of demand generation, head of brand.  There is such a strong team emphasis and focus on achievement, and that moment really epitomizes that spirit to me.

Fun Fact about you. 
I love to play golf and play the piano in my spare time.  I was born in San Francisco.


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