It is very rewarding to solve a problem and help the client directly

Johan Witkam, Technical Specialist for Managed Services

  • 25 July 2022
  • 3 minutes

Johan Witkam is a self-made man who, after secondary school, followed a learn-at-work programme in electrical engineering and eventually ended up at ICT Group. Johan has been working there as a technical specialist for the Managed Services unit for 8 years now.

Technology is my passion

''It is true that I gathered a lot of knowledge on my own. Technology really is my passion. I always want to know how things work and why. The background of certain pieces of technology fascinates me. My curiosity pushed me to take new steps all the time and learn about new technology. The main advantage is that I can now easily manage all kinds of situations.

The reason for me to start working for ICT Group was simple: my then employer Philip Morris in Bergen op Zoom went out of business and I was forced to look for another job. But I did choose very specifically for ICT Group. I had already had an interview there a year before - maybe I sensed the approaching closedown - and I found it very interesting to see what ICT Group did and how important technology is in their services. We shared the same passion for technology. When I contacted them again, the deal was closed quickly.“

Every day is different

“And once you work there, you see the real differences. At Philip Morris, I only had an internal client and could do basically whatever I wanted. ICT Group gave me external clients from the start and the company is much more commercial. That makes their employees much more aware of their role and the added value they provide. For instance, I communicate directly with the conservancy's watermark managers. I see what they do and what they need, and that is part of my daily work. I can help them immediately when they have a problem with the operating system of a pumping engine or dam. There is a 1-on-1 connection between supply and demand. I can see the result of what I do directly.

Maybe the biggest challenge of my work is the unpredictability. Every day is different, there are always management and maintenance issues and calamities you have to respond to. That makes my work very dynamic. I am also on evening and weekend duty for a week every four weeks, so I have to be available outside office hours as well. It can happen that I jump into my car at 11 p.m. to go to a factory and get some machine or business process going again. Or that I am in the field during the weekend to reset a pumping engine. When I drive home afterwards and everything is working properly again, I get a real kick out of that.”

“If you are ambitious, the world is your oyster. Especially with ICT Group.”

Johan Witkam
Technical Specialist for Managed Services
Johan Witkam

Domain knowledge very important

“As technical specialists for Managed Services, we are often brought in for projects that ICT Group realises for clients. Starting at the beginning of a project, when our knowledge is important to think ahead about management and maintenance once the project has been delivered. But we contribute during projects as well, as we have a wealth of domain knowledge that the project team can put to good use. Someone like me, who visits clients regularly, sometimes knows even more about their business operation and processes than they do themselves. That is greatly appreciated and pays for itself in the course of the project.”

You have to stay up to date

“A few years ago, I followed a higher professional education programme in mechatronics. That is about drones, robots, 3D printers, and other things. Very fun to do and it provides new insights. Technology never stands still. At ICT Group, there is a world of training programmes to follow as well. This keeps you up to date and, if you get a little creative and think out of the box, you can even get ahead of things. Show your ambition and the world is your oyster. Especially within ICT Group.

By now, I have become so senior that my colleagues ask me how to solve things. I like lending a hand and it keeps me sharp, because they also come up with their own insights, things that I had not thought about. We do not only share the same passion for technology, but the same eagerness to learn as well. That creates a great team spirit. Apart from the diversity in my work, that may be the best thing my transfer to ICT Group has given me!”