Hannah Van den Brande
Originally, I went to the University to study Slavistics, Russian and Polish. But after a couple of years I decided to change direction and opted to take a course in JAVA development. I did my internship at Formica and now, 11 years later, I’m still working for Formica and am the longest working colleague at the company!
As senior consultant and Functional Analyst at Formica, I help companies, organizations and governments with the management of their documents, content and workflows. This happens in Documentum, part of OpenText. It’s a technology that’s really necessary in a lot companies and a lot of people come in contact with it during their workday.
What I love about working at Formica are the never-ending opportunities they continue to give you. I have always been given lots of opportunities because of the amount of trust they have in me. Furthermore, I love the open culture of working at Formica, everyone is very accessible, from my closest colleagues to the management. You get to express your wishes and if possible, they will keep these in mind for projects. Right now, I’m the most experienced person with Documentum so I get to mentor a newer colleague, just as I got the chance to learn a lot from my colleagues many years ago!
Woman in IT
Both during my education and when I started working at Formica, I was the only woman. I’m always amazed at how little women choose a career in IT. I don’t really know the reason behind this. It’s a job with a lot of variation. There’s no ‘typical day’ in my job, which I love. You also get a lot of responsibilities. Being a consultant is an extra advantage according to me. Every so often you get to work on completely new projects and meet new people which keeps everything fresh. I could recommend this job to every woman, whether she’s interested in technology or wants a more sociable job. I get to see both sides!
At Formica everyone gets the same opportunities based on their skills, interests and ambitions. I may not be as technical as some of my colleagues, but I love the functional parts in the job: interacting with customers, workshops, supporting the users who have questions etc. So I’m linking our customers’ wishes and the developers and hope to keep growing in this role with future projects. It’s fun to be able to see both sides of the process and make sure both sides are happy with the result.