Seven questions to our Head of Quality Assurance, Markus

Get to know Markus Meyer (Head of Quality Assurance, Cologne office)

written by Katharina Schlüter

Markus decided to join Avenga twice: First in 2002, when he completed his internship semester with us during his general computer science studies and on completion, supported us as a working student – and in 2006, when he joined us permanently. Today, Markus heads our Quality Assurance Team and he is the apprenticeship training manager. Time for a short interview – time for seven questions to our Avenga colleague!

 

Markus, you have been on board at Avenga now for more than eleven years. What are the moments you especially like to remember?

There are many! The coolest thing here is that every year is completely different from the one before – though this is hard to believe. We are always trying out new things and keeping up with developments – to which Avenga has stayed true to this very day. To be at the forefront of technology, but also to get a taste of other theme worlds is all part of it. And what I fondly remember, of course, are the legendary Christmas parties!

 

And how did you get into the field of Quality Assurance?

I helped to build up the department. I joined Avenga in 2006 as a software engineer and later became a senior software engineer in product development. At some point, I built a CDR database, a client detection repository database. This was about end device detection. We were able to detect which device someone uses to visit a website. The database behind it contained information about what the device could and couldn’t do; what resolution it had; what viewport – and over 200 other properties. This database had to be updated and expanded on a daily basis, and over time, a team was built, the device management team.

Then we started building our own device cabinet and the topic grew and grew. At some point, we built test sites where we went with the mobiles to test device properties. This is where the word ‘testing’ comes in. If we had a problem with a feature or a project, we would test, for example, whether it was due to the device or the code. This is where quality assurance really took off. And out of this and still ongoing, a separate business unit has grown, which I manage.

 

As head of training, you are the first point of contact for our apprentices . What exactly is your job there?

Primarily, of course, is the contact with the apprentices, our training officers, the vocational school, and the Chamber of Industry and Commerce. I make sure our company’s training is valuable, and accompany our trainees. For example, once a month I sit down with each apprentice and the training officer from the respective department and we talk about what’s on the agenda and how things are progressing. Or when our apprentices come with their report booklet, we go through the contents together and exchange ideas. Our first-year apprentices  are currently working on Raid systems, for example. We then discuss this and I get them to explain it and question it once again.

 

What do you particularly like about Avenga?

We’re very professional and very human in how we treat each other. We’re not only concerned with business interests, but also with social issues and, above all, with the people behind Avenga. You can talk to anyone from trainee to managing director. Nobody here says, “Who are you?” Or, “I don’t care.” And it’s not strange if someone takes off his or her shoes, lies down in our couch corner and starts working on their laptop. I would say we all live according to the Cologne “constitution”.

 

Do we also have a Markus without a QA view, for example, when you are privately on the web?

Difficult, I notice things all the time. And then first I think, “Cool, they can’t do it and need us.” I can’t switch this off. Either you have it or you don’t. I think even a racer gets annoyed having to keep to a 30 km/h speed limit. 

 

What do you do when you’re offline?

I’m in the woods with my dog, sometimes with kids, sometimes without. At the moment, I’m spending a lot of time with my toolbox, trying to finish my extended core sanitation work. Or you can bump into me at a metal or gothic concert.

 

Gas or coal? 

If we’re talking barbecue and not energy sources, then coal. I prefer coal because the meat gets crispier. I like things that are dark!

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