What is the best solution for my customer? This question is at the top of Petra Spiekermann’s agenda every day. As an IT Business Architect at Bechtle, the 47-year old is a crucial cog in the demanding and diverse world of intertwining business strategy and technology.
I support my sales colleagues in customer consultations. An IT Business Architect has a comprehensive overview of customers and their business strategies and an insight into whether their IT helps or hinders said strategies, if their IT is working for them, how processes and technologies can support their drive towards digitalisation, and how people can impacted by change can be optimally supported. What does that mean for my day-to-day business? Meetings with decision makers, carrying out analyses and holding workshops, gathering information, processing results, collaborating with specialists on solutions and then supporting customers during implementation.
I find the breadth of tasks an IT Business Architect is charged with to be highly motivating. It’s a kaleidoscope ranging from operational and technological aspects to regulatory requirements and supporting changes in corporate culture.
A perfect working day is when I can look back and see that I achieved something. When I can see that the workshop or presentation had an impact on my customer and that our recommendations are going to help them on their future path.
The rapid pace of change as well as the broad variety of topics in our industry. Having to be constantly on the ball takes a lot of effort, which sometimes I enjoy and other times I don’t! If something new comes up, I try to plan my daily work around familiarising myself with the topic.
It was an absolute coincidence that I started working in the IT sector and Bechtle has been extremely supportive every step of the way. Over my 18 years at the company, I’ve been lucky enough to grow professionally through numerous development and training programmes—from my first position in Internal Sales responsible for software to where I am now as an IT Business Architect—but also on a personal level. I’d like to tip my hat to my first boss here at Bechtle. He was a fantastic mentor and always said, “Petra, you can learn whatever you like!” His faith in me really gave me belief.
After a digital-heavy busy working day, it’s important for me to be able to switch off by hiking, gardening and, most importantly of all, through my work as a scout leader. It’s a very grounding experience to be cut off from the digital world, sitting around the camp fire singing with 50 kids and having to take care of them without any running water or electricity.
Have faith in yourselves and don’t let yourselves become demoralised. There are so many fascinating and varied jobs in the IT industry. Women can accomplish great things. And whatever you do, don’t fall into the trap of thinking that you have to be perfect at everything right off the bat. Everyone learns on the job and grows into it.