Mining Your Business

36 | Personal Process Mining Success Stories

May 25, 2022 Mining Your Business Episode 36
Mining Your Business
36 | Personal Process Mining Success Stories
Show Notes Transcript

What success can be achieved with process mining? How to succeed with process mining? In this episode we talk all about our past projects at Processand, how much money we have helped our customers save, what are the best practices, and in general, the success we have had over the years.

00:00

Jakub:

Welcome to another episode of the Mining Your Business podcast. A show all about process mining, data science, and advanced business analytics. Patrick, how you're doing today?

 

00:11

Patrick:

I'm confused. You're doing the intro. I'm doing the outro. I'm just generally confused.

 

00:14

Jakub:

Well, too bad. We are going to brag, a lot. We will be talking about our past projects and the successes we've had. We will tell you about how much money we saved our customers, how much data we migrated, and what is Patrick's biggest passion project. Let's get into it.

 

00:39

Jakub:

We've been doing this job of process mining architects for quite some time, and we thought like we could just go back in our history a little and think about what success we've achieved. And now when I told Patrick, let's do a success story, he was like, nah, we don't have any success. I was thinking, we actually do, Patrick, don't you think?

 

01:04

Patrick:

Yeah. I mean, the more I thought about it, you know, you made a very good point. We should highlight a little bit our own personal successes. You know, we talked to so many people and they talk about what they've achieved at their companies and those are all great things. But I think it's time for us to brag a little. What do you think?

 

01:20

Jakub:

Yeah, bragging sounds exciting. And what also sounds exciting is having this solo episode because as you mentioned, we did a lot of guests and it's amazing, just to talk to these people and just to name a few, I'm not even going to name if you just look up our website Miningyourbusinesspodcast.com where you can actually find all the people we talk to, listen to the episodes and just get the value out of it yourself. It's really cool. I think you will not regret and it's, it's been a great ride. And I was thinking, let's do this whole episode today and since it's Friday afternoon, of the time of recording, Patrick is and we will be very honest in this one, Patrick is slightly hungover, right, Patrick?

 

02:04

Patrick:

Slightly.

 

02:05

Jakub:

You were feeling that team spirit yesterday, weren't you?

 

02:07

Patrick:

Absolutely. Team spirit is important.

 

02:10

Jakub:

Team spirit is 100% important. So we were thinking, let's just take it really easy for this one. It's going to be a pleasant journey of an episode where we just talk about what we've been doing in our projects. We will obviously still keep some secrets for ourselves. You know, we can't really say names of these customers for the problems that we are solving, however, we will still try to be as open, as frank as possible. So let's do it. Patrick.

 

02:38

Patrick:

Yeah, let's get into it.

 

02:39

Jakub:

All right then. I guess my first project or it's not really my first project, but the first item on my list here that I want to mention as a success is this customer of mine, which I've been working on for almost two years now, an exciting customer, really, where we were working on accounts payable process and to purchase to pay process. And it's been, I would say, at times a bumpy road because already at the beginning we had a job. Why bumpy? Yeah, well, you know, when you come to a company that just had a massive data leak and you want them to extract all their data into some cloud environment, you know, they're not very happy about it, are they?

 

03:26

Patrick:

Yeah. Yeah. That's the type of stuff that gets the data security guys into a bit of a frenzy.

 

03:33

Jakub:

Yeah. 100%. And there was so much pushback already when we were starting with this project, when we had to ensure that this pipeline of data extraction was just secure and stable and everything. And we I remember back in the day, I had to also communicate a lot with Celonis, where we were creating a very custom extractor for the customer, very specific one, it was a headache, don't get me wrong. Like I had to talk to so many people and answering questions I had no answer for. That was a really a learning experience because there's only so many times where you are in a room full of experts when you are clearly the least educated person on the topic, and you are the person who's supposed to give them the answer.

 

04:23

Patrick:

Well, I guess in that situation you just have to mediate and find the right people to tell the people exactly what needs to be said.

 

04:28

Jakub:

What it's definitely. It's definitely a lesson in humility, that's for sure.

 

04:33

Patrick:

Yeah, that'd be good. I mean, if you were the smartest guy in the room, that'd be a terrifying room to be in.

 

04:39

Jakub:

True. True. So this is already a success in itself, but it's not really the success that I want to mention. Success we actually got with this customer came later on, after almost two years of having a nice looking dashboards full of very interesting use cases in place and we've been struggling there with was the adoption and you know, it. Everybody knows it. The adoption of process mining is a whole different story than implementation of process mining. I keep mentioning it almost in every episode in a how important people skills are in this role and in this type of project. And so what we did there, the company was getting a little, I would say, so how to name it.

 

05:33

Patrick:

Antsy?

 

05:35

Jakub:

Probably nervous. Yeah. Nervous is a good thing. Good word. Because obviously when you are paying a lot for the service provider, implementation partner, then everything you want to at some point see to get some value out of this solution, especially when everybody's just having these success stories, how things are great and how much money they're saving because of the process mining tool and we were in there unfortunately it pains me to say but you know, sometimes you have to admit.

 

06:07

Patrick:

And why do you think that is? Why did it take so long?

 

06:13

Jakub:

I wish I had an answer for that, but I don't. I always felt like I was doing a lot of things right, but I simply probably didn't put enough thought of what the users would eventually be doing with it and who would the users be. So while I was focusing on having everything right and everything correct, I wasn't focusing enough on actually enabling them to use it once I step out. So it was kind of a problem, I would say.

 

06:47

Patrick:

Right. And you put this down is your biggest success, right?

 

06:50

Jakub:

I did, because then I said, OK, guys, we need to change it. And, you know, having all this experience from doing Mining Your Business podcast and talking to all this incredibly entertaining people I started to look at the problem from a different way. So we had everything in place and they just named a couple of problems that they wanted to solve. Which we, you know, like we allocated use cases where everything was in place and all they had to do was just use it. And so I thought, let's sell ourselves to them again for like a like a prove it contract. We give you, I don't know, two or three weeks of our services. And if we don't have any results after that, like it's on us, we are out. We disappointed you and we are so sorry. You deserve someone better. And I was really rough on myself because I really took it personally, this project, because I was also the one who was there from the very beginning. And I really thought that could be me and so we took this one use case in duplicate payments. And if you don't know what it is, then every organization that pays like millions of invoices per year is likely, very likely, it's almost guaranteed that they will pay for some stuff twice unknowingly or by mistake. It just happens. And my colleagues actually, they have developed and I will be very specific, Oksana Kostiuk who developed this algorithm to check for duplicate payments and we've successfully implemented it across different customers. You know, we are just scanning through all the invoices from different systems, different channels for different criteria. You know, we are comparing based on different fields such as vendor name or reference number of the invoice, amount of the invoice. And we can get very, I would say, technical and statistical about it so we can give you recommendations of possible duplicates with some probability. And all the customer needs to do is validate it, right? They need to check the data and say, OK, this is a duplicate or not. Imagine that you have this at your hands for a year and you don't use it. And so I was thinking, what can we do? How can we actually go the next step and make sure that they are using it? And this is why I'm so excited about what Celonis is currently offering, because their latest features for us the data scientist, that's basically the, I would say, the user interface where you can actually make actions and these actions are then processed back into Celonis and you can actually communicate with the system by just clicking on things which you wouldn't be previously possible because previously it was just a reporting tool and analysis. Now it's more like and proactive interface. And so we designed the system for them where they would still get the same results, they would get the same recommendations. We would go the next step and tell them, OK, all you need to do is just click a button here and then basically whatever you do, we get the feedback back into Celonis and we show you then like the ratio of how many you actually processed, how many are still pending, and then obviously how many are duplicate payments and how many are not. I remember when I was doing a workshop on this with the users, there were like ten people in the room. Well, in the zoom room, let's be specific, I wish in the room, but I guess it's not 2019 anymore. I was just looking at some random examples, so I click on the invoice and so here's a duplicate recommendation and you know what, let's check it right now. So I asked the user who had access to a SAP, so I gave her the number of the invoice and she checked and this invoice was interestingly worth of €60,000 and she was just looking in the data for a bit. We were quiet looking at it and she was like right so this is a duplicate and we completely missed it and like at this instance I had them.

 

11:11

Patrick:

Oh yeah.

 

11:12

Jakub:

You could feel it in the room that, you know, the management was like thinking, OK, maybe we are on to something here. Why didn't we catch it before?

 

11:20

Patrick:

So did you ever show them how many duplicates they even had?

 

11:24

Jakub:

Yeah, so that's the thing. We started to track it. It happened in January this year and we started to do it since then. And now at the time of recording is almost end of April. And since then and this is a really crazy number we are about €2.8 million of savings in prevented or even the duplicate payments that can be eventually reversed or, you know, requested to be paid back, 2.8 million.

 

11:58

Patrick:

Since the start of January?

 

12:00

Jakub:

Start of January. So for 4 months. It's crazy because you know, all it took, the data was always there. All it tok was to think about designing a system around people and have one positive experience, one positive spark that would result in them going into it and actually thinking, wow, this thing can help me.

 

12:29

Patrick:

That's actually crazy, you know, considering we're all about the technology and the data and stuff like that, it always comes back to the people. Yeah, people are such a such an integral part of most initiatives, be it process mining or any other. You always have to keep the people in mind.

 

12:48

Jakub:

Yeah. Yeah. So again, big thumbs up, especially for our developers who did that. Thank you, Oksana. Just you know, just yeah, I'm just here taking the sweet fruits of her labor. But yeah, very happy about that. And that's definitely one of my peaks so far of having this milestone. And also I'm glad that I just did this proof kind of a deal. It worked out and I hope we will be or I know that we will be implementing some new processes pretty soon. So all good stuff.

 

13:23

Patrick:

Very well done.

 

13:24

Jakub:

All right, man, what's up with you then?

 

13:27

Patrick:

Well, what did I put on this list? Yeah. So this client took about a year a little over a year of my life to really complete. It was a migration. That's what we came in for. They had an on premise system that we then needed to migrate into the cloud. And with that came, of course, the big question, are our KPIs going to match at the end of the day? Right. We see this number on the left side. Are we going to see the same number on the right.

 

13:58

Jakub:

Wait Patrick, hold on, hold on, hold on. Did they come to us because they heard our episode about, you know, on site versus cloud and how to migrate to cloud episodes that we did. I think it was like episode 9 and 10?

 

14:13

Patrick:

No, the migration was already going on when we did that episode. Yeah.

 

14:18

Jakub:

OK, OK.

 

14:19

Patrick:

Yeah. So I'm sure they listened to it afterwards and I'm sure they heard a few references about themselves in that episode, but they're going to hear a few more from me now. So it was a lot a lot of data. I think it was the largest cloud implementation of Celonis to date. And there might, you know, there might be some more now since then, but at that point it was a lot a lot of data. Right. And whenever you deal with a lot, a lot of data, data ingestion starts to become a big problem. Right? So one of the big thing, like I said, one of the big questions is, is it going to match? Right. And you just don't know, right? You have the kind of building blocks. You have the code that used to make it run on the on premise system. You have the data model that was loaded in the on premise system. You have the analysis that are showing you and are calculating these APIs and stuff. You have all that stuff, right? And now you're moving it and you pray to God by the end of it, the numbers match, right? There's nothing worse because I mean imagine just a lot of legacy code. One of the big problems was there was a lot, a lot of legacy code, years old legacy code, where developers had left, not written documentation and things like that. And we were trying to figure out what it is that this code was.

 

15:33

Jakub:

That sounds very familiar.

 

15:35

Patrick:

Yes, probably because I complained about it for a year. So it took a lot of time. I mean, also weird kind of translating it from Oracle into Vertica. So all of the different functions and stuff aren't the same. So you kind of have to think around it. How can I really translate it and not keep it one to one? Because already the functions don't match. So that was a big thing. Then we start encountering some problems. Problem one, the performance. Now, these queries, these transformations, the transformations that are changing the data, the raw data were at some points so inefficiently written that essentially it just wouldn't run anymore in the cloud. Right? So this became a big, big problem for us because all of a sudden it changed from a one to one migration to a performance optimized migration. And now my hairs on the back of my neck start to raise a little bit.

 

16:32

Jakub:

I remember Patrick before this project who actually used to have hair. And now looking at Patrick after the project and you are bald, my friend.

 

16:42

Patrick:

Significantly changed is what I would say. Yes. I think I've also started getting wrinkles and stuff from this. But essentially the problem is as soon as you start changing the transformations, right, they're no longer one to one. And you pray to God that the changes that you made optimizing them actually result in the same data at the end. I count this, and I know I'm complaining a lot and there's tons of things that I could say about why this was very, very difficult and took so long. These were five sprints back to back to back with a very tight schedule with code reviews that happened where literally every single line of our code was analyzed, if it had proper indentation, and the formatting and things like that, naming schemes and stuff, all things that are good. I agree. But we just had to translate it from a whole bunch of legacy code, undocumented legacy code. Right. So I guess this is one of those things that you can do in a migration, just optimizing it along the way so you don't run into the same problems that we did. So that kind of multiplied all these issues. And I still remember the last sprint because, you know, the sprints that were five of them got progressively more difficult as time went.

 

17:54

Jakub:

It's like you're almost there, except you're not.

 

17:56

Patrick:

Exactly. So the data models got bigger, the transformation started, more source systems were added the longer like these things went on. So in the last one, Sprint five, definitely one of the hardest things I've ever seen or code, right, that we needed to unpack. And I still remember the data model loading for the first time, right? I done all the migration, I have written all the code, translated everything, you know, sweat dripping from my brow, everything, punch that key, data model starts loading. And I'm just so eagerly waiting to see if the numbers match, right? Because that's the make it or break it point, right? And my God, I look at the data left side KPI says ten. Right, right side, KPI says ten. OK, that's one. And I just start going through and checking the dashboards checking the process explorer. Yeah. That matches, that matches, that matches. And then I just go through and literally everything matches, everything matches one to one and I couldn't believe it really. I thought it was maybe like duplicating the dashboards and on premise and I was just looking at the same one. No, no, it was there.

 

19:04

Jakub:

Like a screenshot, right?

 

19:06

Patrick:

Yeah, exactly. So I was flabbergasted at the fact that it matched so well and it was one of the happiest that those colleagues have seen me. And they saw me laughing and smiling, say, What are you so happy about? And I said, Well, look at this. And they were equally positively surprised and we were able to migrate the rest of the stuff successfully and everyone was happy. And this is one of those things where it's so much work and there's so much build-up. And the payoff finally giving them the end result and it being perfect. I'm going to, this is a bragging episode. I'm allowed to do this. It was a perfect migration. And we did a really, really well and customer was happy, the performance was amazing afterwards, super, super quick. Basically, a lot of them were loaded maybe once a week because they were so large to load, but we were able to get that down to 4 hours. Right? So huge, huge dramatic improvements in a lot of aspects of their implementation. And yeah, that was I count that as one of my biggest successes.

 

20:19

Jakub:

Wow, congratulations, man. Yeah. So if I ever need support with transports and migration, I might just reach out to you.

 

20:27

Patrick:

Yeah, you may, but I might just throw a brick at you. I think I've done enough migrations for a lifetime.

 

20:33

Jakub:

That's true. It's actually our second one, right?

 

20:36

Patrick:

Third.

 

20:37

Jakub:

Third. Oh, wow. You're an expert by now.

 

20:39

Patrick:

Yeah. Seems like a cool man.

 

20:43

Jakub:

Let's go back to my site. Yeah, I got I would say it's similar kind of a project in terms of scope and just the overall complexity.

 

20:52

Patrick:

I know what you're going to say.

 

20:54

Jakub:

Yeah, so my project, really, I didn't lose my hair. Luckily, they're still there.

 

20:58

Patrick:

I'm jealous.

 

20:59

Jakub:

And, you know, just to be sure, I also keep my beard in case I ever lose my hair, so at least I have some facial hair on my head. Anyhow, let's stop about beards and hair. Let's talk about the project that went well. This this project was very specific in multiple ways. So first of all, the scope was insane. The customer, they wanted to implement, it wasn't that much of a process mining, rather like a business intelligence because they wanted to look at the very specific parts of the processes in terms of performance. So they designed these, they call it process performance indicators. So it still had a very a lot to do with the process but it just wasn't process mining per se, not in the way that we are used to that, that we know it. And it's really was more like a standard BI reporting. The first huge obstacle was just how many different areas they wanted to measure. And we are really talking about procurement, about sales, deliveries, HR, a make domain as well, finance.

 

22:10

Patrick:

Wait, sorry, what is a make?

 

22:12

Jakub:

It's like production maintenance.

 

22:14

Patrick:

So making stuff, OK.

 

22:16

Jakub:

Yeah, they just call it make, but it's, you know, standard stuff like, you know, these tables and stuff all very, very interesting. One, the bomb explosion. Everybody loves bomb explosion.

 

22:26

Patrick:

Full of materials explosion. Yes.

 

22:28

Jakub:

Yeah. And also very specific use cases for their business. Yeah. I'm not going to name it right now. But again, very challenging. And I have to say, when I started the project, I knew like 30% of this stuff and now imagine that you're going to a workshop with these customers. And I will be very honest that the overall level of preparation that went into this project was very, very low from their side. And you know, you are going to workshop and you expect that they know what they would want to do. But what usually happened in these workshops that they started to argue about what they should do. And you were like sitting there thinking, OK, this is going well.

 

23:10

Patrick:

This is a discussion for a different time.

 

23:12

Jakub:

Yeah, like this memo of a dog that's sitting in the burning room and, you know, saying, this is fine, this is exactly how I was feeling. And you are kind of expecting them to lay the groundwork very, very firm and give you exact instructions on what they want to measure and what they want to build. But you find yourself coming out of the workshop, having one screenshot of some guys showing some random stuff in a SAP and a name of custom transaction and then you're like, OK, guys, what do I do with this? Like, what data do you need? What? Like, I have no idea. And to make things even worse, the core project team was about six or seven people, but over the course of the project, we talked to like 50 or 60 more other people who were experts in the domain or the business users or the consumers of the reports and these people are also from Oracle's the Globe. So it wasn't unusual that you would have a call with people from like a Central Asia, from Eastern Asia, from Europe, from America and so on and so forth. So already the work like how it was scheduled was very interesting and very strange. Also, I can say that this customer also the working week was different for them, as they weren't working on Fridays but on Sundays. So there wasn't a 100% overlap. And also culturally, this customer was just difficult, I would say, because such is the and that's nothing like against the people itself. I think the people are extremely lovely, but just the way that they are looking at work and that the general way of understanding cooperation between those two parties and you know how it is that there is a difference in, you know, when you work with Europeans. So when you work with American and then there is also difference when you work with like people from Saudi Arabia or Central Asia and so on. So you could tell these differences and sometimes it just led to a very unpleasant escalations and stress that was completely unnecessary and would be all caught if just the definitions at the very beginning were very precise and very concrete, which unfortunately they weren't.

 

25:39

Patrick:

As an analogy, would you say that you're kind of an architect and they came to you saying, we want to build a house. And then you say, OK, what kind of house would you like? And they just have no answers to your questions.

 

25:50

Jakub:

Yeah, 100%. And I think when I was describing to a friend of mine once this this project, because it made me very stressed as well, because they wanted to build seven reports in two different tools. So one process mining tool, one another BI tool and not to say that I didn't have an experience with one of those tools before and I had to learn that as well. So that already added some to my stress level up there. But obviously we can do that so you know, we just did and I was going to the project as a, let's say a main project manager and also the main data scientist supported by a very talented colleagues, actually two of them, another my colleague Ha, but also another working student who is great but wasn't there like half of the time. And then imagine that you're working on such a large project in two and a half, people having to jump into the calls all the time, just cover for the person who was working part time. And it just, you know, it's just it's so much unnecessary complexity.

 

26:56

Patrick:

Oh, yeah.

 

26:57

Jakub:

And this could be easily prevented. And if everything was just well designed, it would be great. And like the, the, the, the bottom line is that we actually made everything in time and we actually went through all the user acceptance testing and like passed all the reports. So when I was looking at the reports for the first time or for the definitions, I was like, there's no way we can appeal this not to all of them and there's no way we're going to validate this and get the approvals. And yet like nine months later, there it was, we had seventy very well documented and built reports in two different tools over many different domains. And they all got approved and we finished the projects and came up like heroes. And I was very proud of that because it was very challenging, very stressful, but luckily we managed and came on top.

 

27:56

Patrick:

Yeah. I still remember that time because sometimes you would get up to walk to a meeting and I could just hear you mumbling pleasantries and I know it was stressing you out a lot.

 

28:08

Jakub:

Wasn't it overlapping with your a little stress project that you're just talking about?

 

28:12

Patrick:

Yeah, exactly. We were just not, you know, we were just kind of regurgitating all the, all the silly things we had to deal with.

 

28:20

Jakub:

Yeah. These mammoth projects are are great, but also very, very draining and time very draining. Anything that goes for longer than six months. It's just so tiring.

 

28:31

Patrick:

Yeah. And I mean, they're necessary and it is we are good at what we do, right? So that is some quality we would we want to, of course, provide throughout the entire project, not just at the beginning and where we're still enthusiastic, but now we have to push through this and get it all done. And that takes a lot of energy out of you.

 

28:47

Jakub:

Yeah. But all in all, I'm glad about this project because it's taught me about domains I didn't even know they existed before. Well, for instance, I had no clue that there is an H.R. module in SAP. Well, there is.

 

29:00

Patrick:

Oh, I mean, I did know that. I just have no idea what it looks like.

 

29:04

Jakub:

So, you know, you have to learn hard way and it's broadens your horizons. And eventually, if it ends up being a good project, then you learn. Then I think it's worth it.

 

29:15

Patrick:

It's funny because every time I ask you about, Hey, have you done this before? And he's like, You go back to that customer. I did something similar at that customer. And I'm so I know that you took a lot from that.

 

29:24

Jakub:

Hmm. Yeah. All right, man. Then there is your little baby, right?

 

29:28

Patrick:

Yeah. Yeah, my little labour of love. So I'm a bit of a python nerd. I call myself a python king, which, you know, of course I am. But one of those things that I started doing when I started working with Celonis and process mining and things like that was I saw a big opportunity to optimize a lot of the things that we were doing. We have manual things to do, you know, checking columns from tables and doing copying from one place to another and checking where what table we are using and this transfer, right? We have a lot of manual work to do, right? So some of this stuff is ripe for automation. So I just started writing down little functions for myself that I was constantly using. So not needing to reinvent the wheel because before I got there was essentially just a bunch of scripts were flying around. Everyone knows this tale, like everyone has some local locally stored script or something that they're using to do something and just sharing it via Slack or something like that. Not very organized, right? So I said, OK, that's cool and all, but I'm just going to start aggregating all these things that are coming across my desk, all the things that I'm using, kind of building them on top of each other, right? Because there's some functions that use this and we can kind of build on top of each other. And so this just started growing, right? And all of a sudden I realized I just have way more than just a list of functions. I've got a module here, no, I've got multiple modules here actually, and a whole bunch of different functionalities that I can now all of a sudden organize and all of a sudden people started noticing and they're like, oh, you have this module that can do the stuff. I'm like, Yeah, you can. You can use it. Here you go. And then I realized everybody that was including you have some cool ideas about what you needed for what you need automated. Right? So I just started gathering everybody's ideas everybody's sometimes ludicrous ideas about what they wanted to automate and just started working on it. You know, obviously the GitHub so people can contribute themselves, you know, and merging and pull requesting as much as they like as well as, you know, writing proper documentation was a huge part of it. Because I know if I don't write good documentation, everyone's going to start asking questions. How do I use this? How do I use that? So I just started really, really going deep into this python framework. And it's grown tremendously automated testing and automatic documentation generation and things like that. So it's a lot a lot of work went into this, but which, you know, of course, we can't just sell or anything. Right? It's more of a indirect savings for us. So I'm priding myself on being able to provide my colleagues some functionality that saves some of their time. That allows them to do their jobs easier.

 

32:24

Jakub:

How much time does it save?

 

32:27

Patrick:

Well, since no one can really say and no one has tracked it, I'm going to say 3 billion hours.

 

32:32

Jakub:

Wow. How much is it in dollars?

 

32:36

Patrick:

Four bagillions thousand dollars.

 

32:38

Jakub:

Can I get that saving?

 

32:40

Patrick:

No, it's mine. So essentially, it was one of those things that was very necessary because as we started growing as a company, we needed a thing to aggregate a lot of these functionalities, right? Everyone has the same questions. Everyone wants to achieve the same stuff. So this is the Python framework that helps you do that. And now it has blossomed into a very nice collaboration among colleagues where we're all kind of figuring out what the best way to do these things are and keeping it growing and constantly needing to adapt it. Right. Because changes platforms changes and all these things. So there's a ton of work to do. And the more I think about it, the more stuff we can add. And now I am, you know, you know, when you cook something.

 

33:27

Jakub:

I don't, haha, just kidding.

 

33:30

Patrick:

OK, let's pretend that you cook ok? So and you cook for someone either you know, your parents, girlfriend, boyfriend, whatever, somebody that you care about.

 

33:42

Jakub:

Shows that you know me very well, Patrick.

 

33:46

Patrick:

This is more for the audience. I understand. So say you're cooking for me Jakub and you know that point where I say mmm that taste really good and you have that pride, like, hey, something I made is resonating well with somebody that I care about. You know, that's kind of the relationship I have with this. The thing that I'm building and seeing people use it, like using it efficiently as well and having it save these people time is that feeling for me. Exactly. Like, this is indirectly saving them time. It's a good thing, you know, that that's what I get from it.

 

34:22

Jakub:

How far do you want to take it?

 

34:25

Patrick:

To the moon and back.

 

34:26

Jakub:

To the moon and back.

 

34:28

Patrick:

I don't know. I don't know. At some point, I'll just maybe get an AI to write the stuff for me. GPD3 is getting quite good at this stuff.

 

34:36

Jakub:

So let me know when I can, like, use your bot to just do all the value creation for me and to talk to people and also, like, write queries for me, and I'll just sit there with my hands up. I mean, sorry, legs up.

 

34:50

Patrick:

Oh, I'll be sure. I'll be sure to let you know. So now after my little python geekathon, I think it's worth to talk about something very different, which is your foray into sales. What do you.

 

35:04

Jakub:

Say? Oh, yeah, man. I never thought I would, first of all, call it to be, you know, a success story of mine or just being proud of it. But generally I started as a data scientist and I progressively went more and more into this talking position. So you would probably call me a project manager now. You could call me. I don't know. I'm called a team lead official now based on my contract. But I also, you know, we do this podcast together and I pitch a lot of ideas to customers and so on. And eventually I just turned out to be more of a salesperson, really. I feel sometimes and I'm, you know, I'm always very happy when my project that I work on gets prolonged and we get the new contract, a new PO and actually I when I was thinking about it in this episode, in my projects, I have so far 100% retention of customers, which is just amazing when you think about it.

 

36:10

Patrick:

Yes, applause is necessary.

 

36:12

Jakub:

Yeah. So basically every project I worked on either as a as a lead or at least had a part in it all always got prolonged. And you could you know, you could call myself I could call myself lucky. But at a certain point you just single case will probably there's a bit more to that. And I'm just very happy. You know, I try to stay humble about it.

 

36:34

Patrick:

On the bragging episode? Don't have to be humble, You don't have to be humble here.

 

36:37

Jakub:

It's a really good feeling. And I am happy to be in this position where I actually can say, OK, my projects go well. And I think I have a lot to do with that. And it's great. And even more and more I find myself in the situation where I talk to someone with whom I've never talked before, about our services, what we can do for them. And very often it also goes well. So what I see that my very big strength currently is that I started, you know, from a technical background. So when you started as a data scientist who builds these processes himself, you learn a lot and you learn about the pain points these business people have, you will learn about how to solve them. Slowly, slowly, you build up the knowledge to address them and to get them, you know, on the other side. And when you already have this and then you start building up this people site when you actually know how to talk to them, how to listen to the customers and how to, you know, unlock whatever they are trying to find. It's massive. And you can tell them the difference between a person who's just about the selling part and doesn't know that much. And I don't want to say it's their problem or their mistake is just a fact. Doesn't know that much about what is really, really going on. And I'm very happy that I can differentiate myself from this because I know very often or about a lot of processes and then coming into this position where I can actually position our company as being very good at providing the service you know, I think I'm going too far with this, but just it's a good feeling to sell stuff that you're really, really proud of and knowledgeable about. And you know that you can actually help with the problem. And you're not just selling the services or the tool, but you're just selling yourself and your company and you know that you can actually provide a lot of value.

 

38:55

Patrick:

So when it's genuine?

 

38:56

Jakub:

Right, exactly. Thing you put a nice hit on the nail here.

 

39:01

Patrick:

Yeah, genuine. Also, you're just so gosh darn charming.

 

39:05

Jakub:

That's nice. So are you. And that's probably why you got the lead role in the US office. You want to brag about that?

 

39:11

Patrick:

Yeah, I just charmed my way up there. Yeah, yeah. No. So, you know, we put in a lot of work. I think you and I, and it's mostly about the dedication.

 

39:24

Jakub:

Oh yeah, it's friday 5:30 and we're recording a podcast episode. Patrick, do you consider this to be work right now? 

 

39:34

Patrick:

It's hard to consider this as work.

 

39:36

Jakub:

Hide the beer you have in your hand now, haha.

 

39:40

Patrick:

For the audience I am not currently drinking. I think I've had enough for a lifetime yesterday. So essentially, you know, getting this opportunity to be a team leader of a new location and you know, you and I are in the same boat here, it's a great opportunity because it not only validates what we have been doing, but also kind of looking into the future. Hey, we're doing a good enough job to be able to share this knowledge and, you know, get some people on the same boat and in the same direction that we were on once in.

 

40:17

Jakub:

Just for context, both Patrick and myself, we've been kind of promoted internally into this leading roles of the new Office of Processand so Patrick has the privilege of leading the US team in our growing office in Austin, Texas. And I took the liberty in leading the Czech office in Prague in the town of my heart. So, you know, being home and having this opportunity to build up a data science team here is huge for me. And I really don't take it for granted and I really, really enjoy that.

 

40:54

Patrick:

Absolutely. It's one of those things that I very much enjoy doing. Also, I mean, being in Austin, Texas, it's, it's so different to Germany and it's an adventure, really, and one that I'm happy and proud to be part of, you know.

 

41:12

Jakub:

What do you enjoy about like being in this role so far? Like having to not only lead people but also take care of an actual whole new location?

 

41:23

Patrick:

Yeah. I mean, there's a lot of stuff that comes along with it that you just never thought about, right? So all the things that you need to take care of and everybody that's done something similar knows this and you just start have to dealing with stuff that you never really thought about. And it's being open minded and being dynamic in what you do on a day to day basis. It can change like from an email, right? All of a sudden your whole day changes and you must rearrange all your plans and be a little bit quick on your feet. Right? So that's one of those things that I think was I didn't I wouldn't say it's surprising because I kind of knew what was coming a little bit, but not to the extent, let's put it that way, there's just a lot of stuff that I need to deal with. I know you as well that, you know, a year ago you wouldn't really think of doing.

 

42:09

Jakub:

Yeah. I mean, just to think how much of a hassle it was to create an official legal entity like a daughter company in Czech Republic. And you're thinking, wow, it's European Union, it must be so easy. Well, it's not. It's pretty darn difficult. And going through this process while you still have to take care of the customers and record podcast so that you guys have something to listen to. Yeah, it takes probably a lot of hair off your head right.

 

42:43

Patrick:

Stop talking about my hair, just get over it!

 

42:45

Jakub:

I'm so sorry, man. But it's just, you know, it's right on my eyes.

 

42:52

Patrick:

Yeah, yeah, yeah. So speaking. You mentioned the podcast. I think this is another one of those that we can brag about and how you know, you dear listeners are very much part of this what we consider a success, a podcast that has now over how many downloads, Jakub?

 

43:09

Jakub:

I think by the time this will get released it will be over 11,000.

 

43:14

Patrick:

That's wild, right?

 

43:15

Jakub:

One second, I will tell you the exact number right now. What date is it today?

 

43:24

Patrick:

Today is the 29th of April.

 

43:26

Jakub:

Oh so we are already over 11,000, 1 1 2 3 4. That's a nice number. One, two, three, four.

 

43:37

Patrick:

Nice, look at that. So I mean this is one of those things when you know when we started it we, I think I've said this three times on the podcast already, like you know who's going to listen like whatever it's process mining and all of a sudden 11,000 downloads in and it stopped being a number that you can visualize and now it's just nebulous right it's just 11,000. Ok, what is 11,000 of and you start picturing 11,000 of anything and you're struggling right. Another thing that I was I thought was so interesting is the listen through rate.

 

44:09

Jakub:

Yeah that's pretty high.

 

44:10

Patrick:

That's very very high and I'm struggling to listen to myself for like when you hear a recording of yourself maybe 5 minutes or something.

 

44:19

Jakub:

If it makes you feel any better I struggle to listen to yourself as well.

 

44:24

Patrick:

I just want this to be over. Like, you know, I talked to you in this podcast so often, I've had enough, Jesus. No. So that is so surprising that people really take the time and listen to the things we say. And not to say that we don't have valuable things to say, but is still one of those things that you're like, wow, people care.

 

44:41

Jakub:

Yeah, for that we thank you very very much.

 

44:46

Patrick:

It turns out that you are our biggest success I mean. Yeah, yeah, exactly. So no, really, this is from I think I also speak for Jakub that, dear listeners, this has been a wild journey for both Jakub and I and we thank you for your listening.

 

45:02

Jakub:

Patrick, since this is kind of a different episode, you want to do the ending for once? Oh, no. Today, out of all days?

 

45:11

Patrick:

Oh boy. Yeah. So, dear listeners, thank you for getting to the end of this episode. I hope you have enjoyed our ramblings and our little braggadocious ramblings that we have just done. And if you want to reach out to us, we are very active on LinkedIn. You can also find us on miningyourbusinesspodcast.com And additionally, what else do you say normally?

 

45:34

Jakub:

I think that's basically it. Yeah, ok, great, all right.

 

45:39

Patrick:

Then this episode will be released at some point, right?

 

45:42

Jakub:

At some point, for sure. We will see. Maybe we look back at it and see that maybe we said too much. Maybe this is too much of a rambling, but we take so much time of recording that we probably just going to release it anyway.

 

45:57

Patrick:

Yeah, exactly. OK, fantastic. Oh, now you get to do the intro.

 

46:01

Jakub:

Oh, because now you tell everyone that we do the intros only after we do the recording, the big reveal now.

 

46:09

Patrick:

Oh nooo, I've bursted the bubble.

 

46:11

Jakub:

Thank you very much. Thank you for listening to our show and we will be looking forward to hear from you and talk to you within the next episode of Mining Your Business Podcast. Patrick Bye bye.

 

46:25

Patrick:

Cya Jakub