Fabian Danner is the IT system manager for Progress-Werk Oberkirch AG (PWO). Before joining the company as an employee, he worked there as part of his combined work-study degree program in applied informatics and IT service management.
The PWO Group is a global mobility industry company headquartered in Oberkirch, Germany. In this interview, Mr. Danner shares his enthusiasm for IT, his thoughts on developments in IT security – and his experience with Bosch CyberCompare.
Mr. Danner, how did you get interested in IT? And what keeps you interested today?
I first came into contact with computers relatively early. To put it simply: of course we played a lot of computer games in school, but then I also started to administer my own game servers and program home pages – and it was fun. I went on to complete my schooling at an IT-focused secondary school in Baden-Württemberg, where I majored in informatics. After that I earned a degree in a work-study program with PWO. I gained a lot of practical experience along the way that still helps me today. You could say that I’m a real fan of work-study programs in IT operations.
IT is exciting because of its enormous breadth, the range of development opportunities it offers, and its complexity (along with the desire it inspires to make this complexity manageable). It’s never boring. Of course, PWO has given me tremendous support for my personal and professional development. Today I manage the IT infrastructure team and I really appreciate the career opportunities here.
What do you and your teams normally work on these days? What’s your focus?
Lots of security and digitization – anything that has to do with infrastructure and operations; in other words, core IT services, including securing them. Like other functions, IT is under cost pressure. Our services must be competitive against external IT providers and cloud-based options. This means that sourcing and the question of what we even do in house are important.
What developments in IT security are especially interesting?
The market is quite intransparent – at least in my view. So many providers and such fast-paced development. I appreciate efforts by organizations like the BSI to provide guidelines and recommendations in a more methodical, structured way. Many providers are trying to do business based on fear.
Of course, OT/IoT security will also be relevant for us going forward.
You were one of CyberCompare’s first customers. Are you satisfied? Where do we need to do better?
I’m very satisfied – I appreciate how easy it is to get in touch, and after several projects together I trust the team. Topics are handled in the way I expect them to be. The results are excellent, and in most cases I can use the slides 1:1 for internal communication and coordination.
Turning to external experts makes sense for us – we couldn’t manage these sourcing projects alone on top of our day-to-day work. You see every one of our questions as a challenge. And you answer honestly when, for example, you don’t have experience with a certain product category yet, and give helpful tips (such as who we can turn to).
For me, it’s important that CyberCompare stays agile despite your fast growth. Sometimes I’m surprised that you don’t promote your services more.
Are you looking to grow your team? If yes, what profiles are you interested in, and may candidates reach out to you directly?
We are looking for new colleagues, especially with programming and system management skills. Anyone who is interested is welcome to get in touch with me.
Mr. Danner, thank you again for your time and for answering our questions!
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