Always Setting a New Course
You might think that building a wind farm is as easy as having somewhere to put the turbines, installing them and then just waiting for the breeze to come a-rollin. But there’s much more to it than that.
Whenever Equinor or any other company wants to build a new wind farm, a bidding contest takes place. Bids are based on how much it’s going to cost to build and operate the wind farm and what the price of the power will be.
“We’re trying to make sure that Equinor has the best tools to simulate what the total cost will be in an early phase," Mats Grønning Andersen says.
“Personally, I’m very happy to be working in a company where I have the opportunity to combine working with renewable energy and exploring new technology at the same time.”
Mats Grønning Andersen
Mats is the team leader for the merry team of three working on the tool nicknamed LCoE: Levelized Cost of Energy. Together with Hallgeir Holien and Arve Skogvold, they’re currently working on cloud infrastructure.
He may be a seasoned software developer but it was no coincidence that Mats ended up working on a project focusing on new energy.
“Working on projects related to new, greener energy feels more forward-looking. Thankfully, Equinor is a company that works in different fields and has a lot of options to choose from,” Mats explains.
Students and younger people in general are more interested in working with new energy, which can make it easier to recruit or assemble a team, Mats says.
Creating a Culture of Learning
When working in Software Innovation, there is a lot of new technology to wrap your head around. Mats tells us that it’s not rare for him or his colleagues to start working on a new project once a year.
“When we start working on a new project, we often choose an entirely new framework or technology. I believe this helps us to stay productive and up to date,” he says.
“This helps to build a culture of learning new things and learning quickly, so that we can become even faster and more productive when learning a new technology in the future,” Mats adds.
Listen as Mats tells us why it's important for the team of three to work with what they're best at - while still knowing a little bit about everything. (Video: Torstein Lund Eik)
A High Level of Freedom
Everyone in SI has the opportunity to spend up to 20% of their working hours on gaining new competence and learning something new. But learning something new isn’t the only side effect to choosing different technology every time they start a project.
“No one else tells my team and I how we should work. We take this high level of trust very seriously and we’re always doing our best to make sure we’re making the right choice in technology,” Mats says.
Having the freedom to choose the technology they best see fit is a great opportunity to have but it’s not all sunshine and rainbows, Hallgeir Holien explains.
“It’s a double-edged sword. Having the opportunity to choose the technologies we want to work with is great but you can at times feel a little uncertain on what direction to take since there are countless options.”
Because like we all know, with great power comes great responsibility – one neither Hallgeir or any developer takes lightly.
“I feel a lot more inspired to immerse myself in the subject and learn more about it when I get to take part in deciding what technology we’re going to use. This freedom and the amount of responsibility we get really makes you feel a greater sense of accomplishment when we succeed.”
In the coming months, the team have their work cut out for them. Like most projects in Software Innovation, rounds of conceptual- and prototyping work awaits them – before even more development can take place. A project’s success isn’t easy to predict before it’s in full use.
“I have a good feeling about the work we’ve done based on the user feedback and statistics we’ve got so far. Developing new technology and software also means we have to get people on board with change and get them acquainted with something new,” Mats says.
It’ll be exciting to see the work that Mats and the rest of the Green Teams deliver in the future. If you want to stay up to date and in the Loop – make sure you subscribe! Then, the winds will deliver the latest stories from Software Innovation straight into your mailbox. Quite nifty!
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Mats Grønning Andersen