Our review of the year 2020

What a year is coming to an end! It could hardly be more extraordinary. I myself have only been at Picalike since September, and even though I’ve known this company for a while, I wondered how my colleagues felt about the year here with all its special features. On the one hand, there was the switch to a home office, then the move to Betahaus and also the start of the pilot phase of OnSight Analytics – to name just a few topics. What challenges did you face? What were we happy about? I asked my colleagues from various departments about this and much more. Our review of the year 2020!

Sebastian Kielmann

2020 was an exciting year for Picalike: office move, many new hires, and OnSight Analytics was developed to the point where the pilot phase is now in full swing! How did the development of OSA begin?

The idea for OSA came to us in 2018 when we were thinking about how to combine all the capabilities of our systems into one simple and intelligent solution. The goal was and is that Market Intelligence, with our AI and image recognition, automatically detects and reports relevant events – including recommendations for action.

What was your most difficult task this year ?
Our move in the middle of the lockdown. But Betahaus supported us very much with their flexibility, my wife and two friends were there energetically and helped me with the move. All the other hard tasks were made much easier than I expected because of the help and assistance of the team.

What were you most pleased about as far as OSA and CTL were concerned?
Definitely about the feedback from the first users and customers. The first onboardings were exciting. We eagerly awaited the first feedbacks. They were consistently positive, with many constructive and interesting requests and suggestions for adjustments.

And what about everything else around it?
I was very happy about the support from partners and customers and about the cohesion of the team this year.

What are you looking forward to in 2021?
The further expansion of OSA through new ideas, suggestions and requests from our partners and the team. And to a new version of our AI and image recognition.

What do you wish for in 2021?
A steady decline to normality, also good health and success for all of us.

Julius Lange

You had several big challenges this year. On the one hand, developing Complete the Look further so that creating Looks became easier and faster, and on the other hand, redeveloping OnSight Analytics. What was the biggest challenge?
The biggest challenge was (and is) exactly that: to maintain (and improve) existing systems in parallel with building a completely new system from scratch. Especially since we had in mind all the points that needed improvement in the previous system, and at the same time wanted to improve existing speed benchmarks.

And what was the most exciting part?
The most exciting phase for me was when we had to evaluate different technologies for our requirements. At that point, there was a lot of prototyping, a lot of new things to learn and, of course, always the hope of finding an even better / faster / more suitable system.

What were you most excited about at CTL or OSA?
I think for all of us the joy is greatest at the moment when the product is ready for the market and the first contracts with customers are signed. We have been steadily approaching this point and now it is within reach.

And what were you particularly pleased about as far as Picalike is concerned?
I am very pleased with the new colleagues and how we have managed this difficult year together, especially since some colleagues left us at the beginning of the year. So it wasn’t a given that the team dynamic would continue as I appreciate it.

What are you looking forward to in 2021?
Overall, I’m looking forward to the product maturity of OSA. On the one hand, it will be a large, completed project, which is always a very satisfying feeling for me. On the other hand, it then clears the way for new exciting tasks.

What do you wish for 2021?
For 2021, I would of course like to have more real contact with colleagues. I would also be very happy if the team continued to grow. And I’d like us to use the lessons we’ve learned from this year in terms of home office and other work structures, even if normal working becomes possible again. But I’m very optimistic about that.

Projektmanager

In our conversation about your first year at Picalike, we’ve already learned a lot about your challenges in 2020 (if you haven’t read the interview yet, you can find it here). But what do you say has been your biggest challenge this year?
Bringing the very wild form of agile working at Picalike into more organized channels, although it was partly new territory for myself. Challenge accepted and successfully completed, even though the work in the field never really stops.

In which area did you learn the most?
About the practical implementation of the different agile project management methods from Kanban to Scrum to XP and a bit more. And, that I unexpectedly had a lot of prior knowledge in this area due to my previous work experience and my studies, even if they call things differently there.

What were you most pleased about?
About the fact that the team accepted me with gratitude and that I’m not just some annoying project manager who was just thrown in front of everyone. There were no power struggles whatsoever, just very attentive cooperation. That is certainly not something that can be taken for granted.

What are you looking forward to in 2021?
Going to the broad market with our new baby “OSA” and hopefully gaining lots of satisfied users. For me, that would be another confirmation that we are not only a great team, but also produce another relevant product alongside CTL.

What do you wish for in 2021?
Apart from all the things you want for a successful product, satisfied customers, and a unique team, I would like to see us living in a time when our boss cooks for our entire team in the office on Fridays and our colleagues simply chill out together after work with a drink in the Schanze.

Franziska Weiß

2020 was also an exciting year for your division, as you are the personal support for the pilot partners and also the contact person for our customers, no matter where the shoe pinches. What was your biggest challenge this year?
For me, as I’m sure for many, this year has been very crazy and difficult to plan. I think my biggest challenge was to find out how well our customers were coping with the whole situation and to help them as much as I could, even if it was just to listen to their concerns.

Which customer concern have you learned the most from?
It’s hard to say, I learn something from every conversation, every problem and every request. However, I think I’m currently learning the most from the requirements of our new tool, how different our customers are, and how I need to be even more specific about individual use cases.

What feedback were you most pleased with?
We have received very nice feedback from our customer Witt Weiden from various people 🙂 For example, they have praised the fact that we are a very reliable partner with whom they can implement their wishes quickly and in a goal-oriented manner. And what makes me personally very happy, of course, is when I read that our customers are very happy with the communication and the way we deal with them!

And what were you particularly happy about as far as Picalike is concerned?
What I was particularly happy about, or still am, is that we were able to launch the pilot phase of our new tool OnSight Analytics this year. The phase we are currently going through together as a team is exciting.

What are you looking forward to in 2021?
I’m looking forward to all the ideas and suggestions from our customers that will help us develop our product further. But also, in general, to the good cooperation and nice conversations I will have 🙂 .

What do you wish for 2021?
Most of all, of course, I wish that our customers are satisfied with our technology and service. But also that our mentioned new tool develops well and offers a great added value to our customers as well as potential customers, so that all the diligence is rewarded by the team.