ANA ALMEIDA, SONAE BIT, IT COORDINATOR
Year when you began working at INESC TEC and when you left: 2015-2016
Centre at INESC TEC where you worked: CITE – Centre for Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship
Names of projects you were involved in: Enterprise European Network (Project), Managing open innovation collaboratively at network level (Research), Innovation and Research Management Systems (Consultancy)
Explain your experience since leaving INESC TEC
I left INESC TEC about two and a half years ago in order to accept a professional challenge at BIT, SONAE. BIT is the information systems department of SONAE, which is one the largest Portuguese retailers. I started as a project manager (at ALERT), then I started to work in a consultancy and research team (at INESC TEC), and now I’m leading teams (at SONAE).
SONAE is a company that focuses on innovation, so from that point of view, I feel I’m still learning and dealing with new and innovative topics, in this case, related to the retail area. The area I’m currently managing within BIT focuses on giving a more productive and collaborative working place to our 40 thousand collaborators, through the delivery of innovative projects in the IT equipment, apps and software fields.
In your opinion how did your time at INESC TEC help you in your new role?
My time at INESC TEC gave me the opportunity to meet new business areas and to understand its challenges and vicissitudes, after eight years of being dedicated to the healthcare area and obtaining a Master in Innovation from the University of Porto (MIETE). INESC TEC also allowed me to get to know more about the national and international innovation ecosystem either through close contact with institutions such as UPTEC, ANI, ANJE, Europe Union or through the work done along with established startups and companies.
This more complex and academic knowledge added valuable expertise to my professional profile, making me more comfortable in innovative environments, which SONAE is part of.
In your opinion, how has INESC TEC changed since you left?
INESC TEC has been positioning itself as a reference institution, by adapting its supply to the market’s demand and investing more in its brand (for example, New website, INESC TEC’s community).