A short but powerful question to start with: How would you describe web development in your own words?
"For me, it’s all about making a company accessible to its customers and employees, on any device and from any location. The gateway for this is a web browser. There many people immediately think of a website, and rightly so, but you could just as well apply this philosophy to a company’s accounting tool, for example," explains Wietse.
What are the characteristics of a good web developer?
"Someone who is always looking for the best solution with the user in mind. What do they really need? The focus is not on the bells and whistles you would personally like to see. You match the end product precisely to the person who is going to use it," Mattias explains. "In addition, a good web developer is always on top of the latest trends. They constantly translate this into their daily work for the customer, so the customer can always be sure that everything was built using the very latest features. Another important aspect is good communication. With the customer, with colleagues, and also in the code. Besides the actual code, I think it is also important to add comments or rationales. Good documentation is often underestimated," adds Mattias.
Wietse also has a clear picture of what an expert is like: "In my opinion, a good web developer asks the right critical questions, always in an open dialogue with the customer. You need to explore for yourself whether the initial question addresses what is really needed, for example by delving into the user data of the old application. A healthy dose of assertiveness comes in handy, but a proactive attitude is also necessary. Only then can you spot the customer's potential blind spots and add the golden touch to an application for them."
What are the energizers in your job?
"My day is good when I get presented with a real challenge. Working with others to figure out the whole picture and then often stumbling upon something stupid that can be solved by the end of the day, that sort of thing energizes me," Mattias says. "User satisfaction that is communicated to you is also very gratifying," he adds.
"At the moment, I’m working on an application that was built wrong in the past. It needs to be restructured, eliminating the bugs one by one. Seeing all these bugs disappear makes me feel good every day," says Wietse. He also agrees with Mattias about receiving positive feedback from users. "Like many others, I love to see that my work has brought about something positive. Making the daily work of others as easy as possible with good applications is what I like to do."
There are many players on the market, often in the form of specialized agencies. What is the added value of the Inetum-Realdolmen web development team?
"Our strength is that we can draw on a great deal of knowledge. People who specialize in integration, security, cloud, business agility, etc. - you name it. We have everything we need in house. Thanks to that background, our mindset also reflects this helicopter perspective. We don't just create an application, we make sure that every element is right and fits into the larger business and IT environment," says Wietse. "We also do this proactively. Based on a project approach, we form a team internally with other units such as Digital Experience and DevOps. We regularly look at how we can strengthen each other and serve our customers even better."
You are still a fairly young team, will you continue to evolve? And how?
"The aim is for our team to double in size in the coming time. In such a fast-growing team, we believe it is important to focus on working in a community. To get to know each other (even) better, to share knowledge and to achieve a real team feeling. All of these promote a real sense of internal cooperation. This has a direct and positive effect on the quality of our services," Mattias concludes.