OxTS products and components are highly trusted by test engineers throughout the world. Our customer base includes the testing and research and development teams among 90% of the world’s leading automotive manufacturers, alongside Tier 1 suppliers and progressive start-ups. Our INS products and components are also highly trusted within the survey and mapping space. Our team will never take our feet from the peddle, however. We continually look for ways to improve things for our customers. And to gain the best from our highly trusted hardware, its essential that our software provides engineers with the tools they need to manage and analyse the data they gather. Here Pete Rylands shares his experience as an OxTS Product Manager.
1. How long have you worked at OxTS, and have you experienced many changes during your time with the Company?
I have been at OxTS for one year, and there have been quite a few changes in that relatively short period. There has been growth in all teams which is exciting for bringing in new ideas and perspectives on our solutions.
What I’ve enjoyed seeing most is the solidification of cross-team collaboration, which was plain to see from the work leading up to our next generation release in 2019. This has continued into the everyday architecture, development and delivery of our work.
2. What does a typical day at work look like for you?
My primary focus day-to-day is our software. That’s NAVsuite and RT-Range Suite, alongside supporting the development of applications which run independently or are integrated with our core offering. My top-level ‘business as usual’ is ensuring our ‘in flight’ projects are progressing and that our roadmap is delivering solutions to the problems and opportunities we see. This boils down to communication, so a lot of my day will be spent talking with our channel partners, end users, project managers, engineers, marketers and, well… anyone who needs to be listened to or updated!
Within specific projects, I act as a product owner and support the team as a Scrum Master. And, depending on the stage of a given project, I will be facilitating design workshops, creating user stories, working with marketing to form value propositions and presenting progress at specific checkpoints to get stakeholder approval to continue.
3. What appealed to you about working at OxTS?
The talent, wealth of knowledge and kindness shown by everyone I work with is great to be around and to be a part of. Then you look at the products and they are helping support a safer future for everyone. From an inner geek’s perspective, they’re also really cool. And also from a personal view, I see the support and space to make change and create an even better experience for our end users.
4. Which of the projects you’ve been involved with so far has been the most satisfying and why?
Our NAVsolve CMD product release in January was my first end-to-end project. It ran to time, to our estimated budget and delivered a tool that people do – and will – want. We know it’s the first iteration and there are more improvements to be made, but we collaborated with end users through our channel network, have seen adoption beyond the initial client and I worked with a fantastic team that wanted to learn, collaborate and support each other in delivering for both the end user and the business.
There’s nothing more satisfying than that as a Product Manager.
5. What’s been your greatest challenge as an OxTS Product Manager, and how have you overcome this?
Getting used to the technology, and I think that is likely to be a popular answer from anyone who is new to the Company! The things going on in that red box are incredible and there will be parts I will never truly understand. Luckily for me, we have a great engineering department who can translate most things in a way that us lay people can understand.
6. What’s next for you in your role as an OxTS Product Manager?
There’s never just one focus but we are currently working on an exciting new release of NAVsuite. Based on customer and channel partner feedback, we have taken the time to really understand how we can ensure we deliver software that works for the modern day automotive and survey markets.
We also want to make life easier for engineers and technicians; whose lives are only set to get busier as tests get more complex, more scenarios are created, and more areas need mapping. And our goal is to meet their needs with what we’re building.
If anyone is interested in helping us, by collaborating and offering feedback from their own experience, please get in touch! I’d love to hear your insight.