21 Dec Mediaan at the Corda Campus
It is time for a celebration! We have opened our new office at the Corda Campus in Hasselt. This leading tech campus is a motivating business community for countless innovative businesses and start-ups. The new vibrant Corda Campus environment fits perfectly with the vision of Mediaan Hasselt: acting as a start-up company that handles big. Our new location will be led by Micha Verboeket in his role as Director Hasselt. We visited him at the inspiring Corda Campus to get to know his vision and what he believes is the key to success for Mediaan Hasselt.
First questions first: why did you choose the Corda Campus?
The atmosphere when you enter the Corda Campus strongly appeals to me. The movement, co-creation and the innovative feeling of the architecture was a perfect fit with how I visualized Mediaan Hasselt. Our office is located in the former Philips production halls that are transformed into a high-tech environment and workplace of the future. Did you know that some of our first projects as an IT company in 1984 were at Philips in the same buildings as our new office? New and old; a rich past with a prosperous future.
It is also located near to the main office in Heerlen (NL). I assume that this is on purpose?
We are strategically located in Hasselt in the new hot-spot for technology and innovation. That was the first priority. Another huge benefit is the half an hour drive to the Mediaan headquarters in Heerlen (NL). In my opinion, Mediaan Hasselt can be seen as an experienced scale-up. Starting with a new team and delivery centre, but experienced with our 90 other colleagues in Belgium, The Netherlands and Germany. As a motto, we like to use the phrase “handle big, act small”.
You are now located on the Corda Campus for over 1 month. You believe the campus lives up to your expectations?
Absolutely! Even beyond expectations, I would say. It is such a refreshing and inspiring environment with lots of dynamics. Business communities, events and keynotes, collaboration with other companies, and useful services and retailers such as restaurants and bars, a barber shop and a bank. And, of course, plenty of options to relax or recreate like a fitness club, table football, and more. I would like to compare it to Silicon Valley’s Google atmosphere, but in Limburg!
And being a Dutchman in Belgium. How is that turning out for you?
Belgium is not quite new to me. I already moved here almost 7 years ago. This is due to the fact that my girlfriend is from Belgium. We had to choose on which side of the border we wanted to live. Well.. you can guess who had the final call. I now have the benefit of choosing either side depending on who’s the target of Dutch/Belgian jokes :). In my experience, the down to earth, open minded and personal Limburg/Dutch culture and approach is very much appreciated in the projects we do in Belgium.
Let’s jump a couple of years back in time. How did you start your career at Mediaan?
Initially, I got to know Mediaan because I participated in the Masterclass, and even managed to win the first prize in this competition. The prize was a study trip to Silicon Valley. For me as an IT guy a unique experience, especially at my young age at that time. After my study Software Engineering, I decided to further educate myself and I finalized my Master in International Business at the Maastricht University’s School of Business and Economics. Since the Masterclass experience affected me in such a positive way, I started working at Mediaan after I graduated for my master.
And now you are Director of Hasselt. Quite a journey right?
Yes, you can certainly call it a journey. But I worked hard for it. I started as a software engineer, but after only 6 months I was given the chance to prove myself as a project manager / team lead. I immediately felt: this is what I want to do. I love to inspire people, take the lead in projects, set out the lines and thereafter let other people take the stage. No challenge is too big. And now I am here. It is safe to say that I am a good example of the chances that Mediaan offers to their employees.
Is that also the type of Director you like to be?
That is 100% true. This may sound very cheesy, but my energy comes from generating new ideas and setting up a vision and translating that into specific actions. And I also have the technical know-how and experience to lead a team. This can be a team of data scientists, the technology department or an architecture consultant. As long as it is linked to innovative IT projects, I am in!
Are you setting up Hasselt all by yourself?
Marco Peters and I are in this together. Marco is part of the Mediaan management team and Managing Director of Belgium. We are now the duo-team whose task it is to put Hasselt on the map. It is a nice and close collaboration. Marco has a big network and an inspiring experience. We empower each other and Marco puts enough trust in me to lead this new delivery centre in Hasselt the way I want to.
It is already pretty crowded in the office. Aiming to get even bigger than Heerlen this year?
Haha, never say never. I am very ambitious, but for the next year we plan to build up a new team of 5 people that collaborates closely with our other colleagues just across the border in Heerlen (NL). Right now, we already have 8 students from PXL Hasselt working on an exciting school project.
Can you tell us more about this assignment?
Sure, I am happy too. As a hobby I race with go-karts. And for years I had this idea of how technology could enable new possibilities for a personal coach to improve your driving skills, or enhance the karting experience by adding gamification elements instead of pushing for the best lap times over and over again. The students are now working on building a proof of concept for this personal coach. It will combine real-time karting with augmented/mixed reality tips&tricks, IoT connected karts, and making it more fun by gamification techniques.
Wow, that must be a cool project for students?
The project was impressively popular among students. I had to say ‘no’ to students, since I had that many applications. The project doesn’t only sound very cool, but augmented reality is also a very interesting topic for us. We are building up a certain level of expertise so we can utilize this technology in projects of our current (or potential) customers. The techniques used in this Mixed Reality Karting project can be used in everyday activities and in many organizations.
How do you see Mediaan Hasselt in 5 years?
I would be extremely happy to have a great team of 12 people. Together, offering the best possible innovative solutions for our customers. But for now, let’s focus on today. That is finding ambitious people with a passion for technology like my colleagues and myself, and finding new projects at organizations that we can inspire and support in future proofing their businesses.
What kind of people are you looking for?
Our team is home to the best and brightest minds in the industry. I am in the search of people who are always up for a new challenge. People who are fascinated by the possibilities unleashed by the latest technologies. That fascination drives them to create game-changing solutions for our customers. Profiles can vary from software engineers, business analysts, data scientist, and project managers.
Why should people want to work at Mediaan Hasselt?
Like I mentioned before, we act small but think big. We work for interesting customers and realise solutions with state of the art technologies, both on a local and international level. You can be part of something ‘new’, within a steady framework.
Should they fear the Dutch roots?
Haha, I believe the right people for Mediaan will not see that as something negative, but rather as a positive aspect. We do not maintain a strong hierarchy or strict rules within our organization. We are down to earth. You can already notice this when you visit the office at the Corda Campus; our door is always open. The effect is notable: people from different companies walk in and out our office. Because of this, we have good connections with our neighbour-companies and students.
This sounds good! How can I apply?
On the Corda Campus, we have an own company page with our current vacancies. If you want to apply directly, feel free to send your resume and motivation letter to us using the details on our Job page. Also be sure to check out the cool things we do on our website www.mediaan.com or follow us on Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter, or Youtube!