By Daan Blokker
My name is Daan Blokker and I am a Senior Business Consultant. In the summer of the previous year, which will always be known for the Covid-19 outbreak, I was thrilled to join LeadingMile Consulting.
My interest in this role was sparked by the possibility to work for a boutique consulting firm which is also a Start-up FinTech company. After having the first conversations I found that even though they are a relatively small company, their client base consists of top players within the Financial and Alternative Investment industry. Adding to this the fact that I could add value through my years of experience with business analysis and broad overall knowledge on working on Agile and complex projects in international Financial Services environments, this made me very eager to make the step.
Since becoming part of LeadingMile, I have joined their growing team of consultants. Together, we are focused on delivering value for our clients through implementation, strategic consulting, project management and IT management.
I am personally passionate about practicality and I like to deliver practical solutions for LeadingMile as well as our clients. Furthermore, I have jumped on an important internal project, aimed to add value to our own proprietary toolset; Test Automation Framework or TAF. The difference we can make through this tooling has and the possibility of adding value to this process of ongoing development has given me both a challenge and a fun experience. Making life easier for clients is a main reason for this.
Through my career, I have gained over 20 years of experience working for Dutch top-tier financial services companies. I started out as a trainee in Software Development: programming, testing and designing IT systems. From there I have developed myself through information analysis and hands-on project management into an all-round Business Analyst. As is clear from my profile, I like getting involved in the details and understanding the issues and (potential) solutions.
In recent years I have been working as a Senior Business Analyst and Product Owner for ING Bank and had an almost two-year spell at Dutch airline Royal KLM. Through these years I was mostly involved in implementing ERP type systems, which has provided me with a solid foundation to build on in my current activities.
My step into FinTech
The nice thing about working for LeadingMile is that I no longer only contribute with my personal skills and knowledge but with the combined skills of myself and my colleagues. If our client needs specific tooling, we are able to turn to our internal knowledge and experience and build it ourselves! I feel this is a major advantage of working in a small team with many backgrounds and specific knowledge present. Everyone brings something to the team to make magic happen for clients.
Working for a FinTech Start-up gives the possibility to work with the newest technologies without all the restrictions and boundaries that traditional companies may have. This helps us to think out–of–the–box and of course enables us to create and deliver our products much faster. Due to the flexible nature of our offerings, we are able to adapt much faster than traditional companies and thus we are able to adapt to the specific needs of customers, even if they alter during the process itself.
At LeadingMile I was given the opportunity to also be involved in all aspects of the product development of our proprietary automated testing framework, TAF. During this process I am actively working on the commercial side as well as the technology and roadmap for TAF.
My outlook for the future
I am happy to be in the business space of Financial Services, specifically in The Netherlands. When you look at the forecast of FinTech and especially the Alternative Investment markets, I am enthusiastic about what the future holds for us as a company and the active role that I will be able to play in that all.