Welcome to Brainial Edwin. Tell us something about yourself.
I am Edwin, 32 years old and living in Utrecht. After having enjoyed working at Arcadis for roughly 6 years, I was ready for a new challenge and joined Brainial in January to fully concentrate on data- and machine-learning issues. In my spare time I make music on the guitar (and try to teach myself piano), you can find me on my racing bike or mountain bike, and I like hanging out with my friends. Originally a civil engineer, I have always been extremely interested in the digital side of complex projects. I like to immerse myself in all the developments around machine learning and artificial intelligence, which I can now apply a lot at Brainial.
What was your role at your previous employer?
At Arcadis, I was Information Management Consultant. I was mainly concerned with how to handle (digital) information as smartly as possible in Arcadis' own projects, or those of clients such as TenneT. Here, I mainly looked at what information needs to be recorded for a project to run smoothly, how this information can be recorded, how this information can be exchanged, and how we can let the computer help as much as possible in understanding this information.
Do you have experience in responding to tenders?
In recent years, I have worked on a fair amount of tenders. My own role was mainly to draft part of the plan of approach from the Information Management specialism. I also took a more generic look at how we as Arcadis can best verify whether our bid covers all the client's requirements. I was also on the evaluating side of tenders, assessing tenderers on behalf of the client on the digitisation aspect of two large framework contracts.
What does your work at Brainial consist of?
At Brainial, I am working as a Data Scientist. I am currently working mainly on improving the models Brainial uses to interpret tender documents. I research, design and train algorithms that can help our customers fathom the information in a tender faster, or increase the reliability of the information from Brainial.
What are the biggest challenges right now?
Phew, that's a difficult question. In the market, I see some major challenges. Projects are becoming increasingly complex, and more is being asked of contractors. Parties have to do more, and are running into shortages of people on all sides. We need to slim down as a market in order to be able to cope with major tasks in the coming period, such as energy transition.
At Brainial, the biggest challenges right now are mainly on reliability. Although humans can also make mistakes, mistakes are accepted a lot less by a computer. It is essential to make the reliability of all algorithms used by Brainial as high as possible.
How do you like it so far at Brainial?
I really like it at Brainial! I'm happy to have found a place where I can go into the depth of Machine Learning, Natural Language Processing and Data Science, but am still involved in (among other things) the built world and complex projects. Otherwise, it's a nice cohesive team. Everyone is very motivated to make the most of it and feels ownership of the product.
What advice do you have for organisations looking to win more tenders?
Look for ways to make information as findable as possible. Tender lead times are often short, requiring a lot of time and effort to make a serious bid. The time involved often reflects in the quality and winning chances of the tender. Any time that can be gained by spending less time 'searching' for information can be spent on further analysis and responding to the tender.