Life at Big Industries: Interview with Morad


Morad Interview-1-1

Interview with Morad on how it is working for Big Industries? How important are the values Share your Wisdom, Feed the Family Feel and Dare to Grow.

How did you join/find out about Big Industries?

“Data is the new gold”

Throughout my college years, I quickly came to the realization it was my ambition to work within the Big Data field. The idea that data has become a resource for producing digital products and services and is therefore being dubbed the new gold has always captivated me. The process of gathering massive amounts of data, transforming it into a usable form, and ultimately utilizing this information to address questions has always fascinated me.


So, when it was time to start looking for an internship to finish up my college education, I quickly narrowed it down to a top three list. Engie would be on the third spot, Flexso claimed the second position, and unsurprisingly, Big Industries would be my absolute preference. Following an initial conversation, it became clear to me that Big Industries would be the ideal place for me to start an internship. It was an amazingly interesting internship about setting up both batch and streaming services within the AWS stack. The research question I would try to answer would be: “What was/is the impact of the covid pandemic on the global aviation industry?”.

After successfully completing my internship, I felt that Big Industries would also be a great place to launch my professional career alongside a remarkable group of individuals. So I did!

What do you like about working for Big Industries?

Big Industries allowed me to learn and continue learning every single day. This happens through organized workshops, dedicated time for learning individually and reflecting about the current assignment. Focusing on both maintaining a healthy relationship with your customer and improving personal competences is something I really appreciate at Big Industries.

What was something new you had to learn to do your job?

I have a degree in Electronics and ICT, but courses about data engineering or the cloud were kept very limited. The program’s main focus was electronic circuits and microcontrollers and a generous amount of time spend on full stack development.

So I definitely had some catching up to do involving anything around data engineering and the cloud. Therefore, it was very welcome to get a few months time to become familiar with the AWS stack and data engineering tools like Apache Kafka and NiFi when I first started at Big Industries.

In case of soft skills, I feel like I am prepared to handle anything, but looking at all the available tools within the data engineering field and the expertise of my fellow colleagues, I know I still have a lot to learn.

How does your work week look like?

Generally, I work at the Cronos office in Kontich once or twice a week and at the customer’s office in Brussels every Thursday.

My current assignment allows me to work on different projects which brings a lot of variation in my job. I am very lucky in that case!

What technology do you like most?

I have had the opportunity to work with a fair amount of different technologies the past 2.5 years.

The first tool I came in contact with in the field was Apache NiFi, an open-source ETL tool which plays a major role at my current assignment. This tool keeps amazing me with all the possibilities it offers. NiFi in essence is quite an easy and forgiving tool and allows you to setup dataflows with limited configuration necessary. But design and implementation can also get very complicated very fast using NiFi.

Another more recent technology I’m learning about is DBT (Data Build Tool). I always have the ambition to broaden my knowledge and DBT is a prime example of this. It allows me to learn about a new technology and at the same time helps me to offer more value to my current customer which implements DBT in it’s current stack.

If I had to pick a favorite, it would definitely be Apache NiFi. An amazingly simple, but also powerful tool that allows you to setup dataflows within a very short time and also allows for very complex processing if necessary.

Share Your Wisdom, Feed The Family Feel, Dare To Grow

Can you give an example of a situation where these values were put in practice?

I enjoy sharing the wisdom I’ve managed to collect by organizing workshops or just presenting about something new I’ve learned.

In the past, I have organized a workshop about JOLT, a tool that allows json-to-json transformation.

Coming up, I am planning on organizing a DBT workshop with some other colleagues for our next Big Industries Academy Day.

Besides sharing their wisdom and feeding the family feel, my Big Industries colleagues very much push me to grow, and still do so, both professionally, but also on a personal level.

As an example, a lot of my fellow Big Industries members spend time on health and wellbeing, something I’ve inherited and am currently trying to do as well. At Big Industries it feels like I’m growing every single day, both professionally and personally.

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