Meet the team
Our “Employee Spotlight” blog series places the spotlight on Lesterius employees who tell us about why they decided to join Lesterius and what they do here. At Lesterius, we want employees to look back at their time here and say they did the work of their life at Lesterius. This week we sat down with Ulf Bengtsson to learn more about his career.
Can you tell us a little about yourself? About Ulf when he’s not working.
Whenever possible I’m out in nature. When not wandering through the open plains or forest of Norway, you can find me doing some project on the house or gardenwork. I also enjoy crafting sculptures in different types of stone. Not aspiring to be the new Rodin, but I profoundly enjoy working with this material.
How did you become interested in this area and what do you think is unique about your career area?
I first time I came in contact with database development when I was involved in a project to build up an environmental organisation.At that time, I was also involved in several sports organisations and soon learned all these organisations were struggling with Excel files and working in such an inefficient way. I strongly felt the desire and curiosity to change that.
Soon, I got hooked on the problem solving part. I fell in love with the Claris FileMaker platform because of it’s tremendous capabilities to develop solutions quickly and flexibly.
Many customers do not have the in-house capabilities to develop the solution they need. That’s when we come in. It is not uncommon that the problem the customer first is focused on is not the main issue in the organisations way of working.. Together, through a co-creation approach, we uncover that the root cause is something more profound.
We aim to uncover these real pain points in the way an organisation works through a (or several) workshop(s) in which the customer is heavily involved. We are then able to present the opportunities a tailored solution can offer and how this solution could enhance the organisations way of working.
For me, the most exciting projects is to work on companies in their start-up phase. They’re growing and developing. The Claris platforms strength is its flexibility and speed during development and the ability to make rapid changes in an operating environment. I love being involved in developing new functions as needed, adapt the system to the rapid change that a growing company needs. This often means that you are involved in the development of the company’s routines, information and dataflows. Organically we are often consulted also for broader business decisions due to our profound understanding of the organisations workflows and DNA.
What jobs and experiences have led you to your current position?
- I have a background as an engineer in development of new materials.
- I was active in sports, also as a coach and coach in areas such as mental training, technical skills, at national team level
- Archery: personal and as a trainer. Focus on upper body. Creating instruments to measure nerve focus on muscle memory
- I have worked with Claris FileMaker for almost 30 years in various forms, as a subcontractor -consultant, started up and ran several companies among which Atatiki SA which was acquired by the Lesterius Group and which I’m now proudly part of.
- Worked in all roles from developer to project manager for teams.
- Developed and held training courses for developers in FileMaker, participated in and started up yearly Developer Conferences for the Nordic market (Devcon Scandinavia).
- Hired as a “crisis” consultant for projects where conflicts between consultant and customer have arisen.
How do you and your team prepare for the start of a new project?
If we can, we start by looking at the customer and their wishes and requirements. At first, we refrain from looking at things with a too technical eye. We want to understand how the people within this organisation work and collaborate. We ask questions like
What is the industry this company is active in? How do they currently work? What’s the corporate culture? Who will be the stakeholders in this project? Where is their focus?
We aim to create a ‘big picture’ for ourselves by gathering the views of as many different stakeholder within the company as possible. Based on that, we can plan for how we will work specifically with this customer and its projects
If the “older” you can advise the “younger” you, how would you encourage yourself and your work ethic for this industry?
I find it difficult to see myself even older, but for those who are younger, I encourage you to spend time learning to understand the users of a system and not just look at the technology to be able to create better systems. Take advantage of the experiences from projects in different industries and use this in new projects, help customers look at problems from new perspectives that others have found solutions in