What does … a Data Engineer do?

Job Title: Data Engineer

Name: Markus Kral

Age: 26

Education: IT Specialist System Integration & Computer Science FH Munich

Company: Plan.Net Business Intelligence

What do you do?

I work as a Data Engineer at the still young company Plan.Net Business Intelligence (BI). With the help of Artificial Intelligence, we help our customers optimally distribute their media budget and better respond to the constantly changing market situation. In the first step, we automate the storage and cleansing of a wide variety of data sources and streams.

These data are then processed and analyzed to give our customers better insight into the effectiveness of their advertising campaigns. In doing so, I support the customer every step of the way, from collecting the metrics that are important to him to an application tailored to his needs or a dashboard. Among other things, we have developed a tool that uses learning algorithms to manage the budget distribution of advertising campaigns based on customer-specific goals across all channels, such as: Radio and TV optimized.

How did you come to this task?

Like most of the students, I had to earn a bit of money during my studies, so I was looking for a close-to-school work placement job, which ideally would not be too far from my university. I found both at Plan.Net BI. Since the team was still very small at that time, I was able to help shape a lot right from the start and had the opportunity to try out a lot of new things since there was no fixed technology stack yet. The fact that we have managed to maintain this start-up character has made a big contribution to making me feel at home here.


Which feature helps you the most in your everyday life? Why?

A great curiosity is very helpful in my daily work routine. We sometimes work on very large and complex datasets that initially conceal their relationships and then reveal them later in the course of a project – that’s where perseverance is needed. Also, you should not be overwhelmed by the initial complexity of a project. It helps me to cut small, clearly defined work packages and to gradually reassemble them – like a puzzle.

In addition, flexibility is also required in my job: In the course of a project, new acquired knowledge can change the requirements of a product or make the previously chosen implementation impracticable. Therefore, the own code must be constantly reconsidered and discarded from time to time.

Describe as clearly as possible a project that has particularly impressed you.

We are currently developing the fourth version of our internal core4 automation tool, which we will release under an open source license in the next few months. The aim of the tool is to create a common working platform for all actors involved in an advertising campaign. From the campaign planner to the data scientist to the management level.

To make freely available his own code and thus all conceptional as well as organizational thoughts of the world, is exciting and very interesting.

What is most important to you in your job? What is the most fun?

What I like the most is the mix of customer interaction and classic analytics and programming. We always accompany our customers holistically, from a first data analysis – at this time the exact goal of the project is often not yet fixed – over the design and the final programming of the applications – everything from a hand.

My job is indispensable because …

… increasingly diverse and larger amounts of data are generated, which allow better analyzes but can no longer be managed manually. As a Data Engineer I support our customers in making this data profitable for their company.

If you were not Data Engineer at Plan.Net, what would you be?

Maybe I would have tried after my studies as a technical journalist, trying out new unknown technologies irritates me very much.

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