The largest branch of Sii Poland in the Silesian agglomeration is growing in strength. Currently, more than 300 specialists work in Katowice and is expected to expand to 400 by the end of 2020. Due to the expansion plans, the company changes location – it has chosen .KTW I, a modern facility in the very center of the city. The leader of IT and engineering services will occupy the new office space from September this year. What contributed to this success, what projects are being implemented and what initiatives Sii experts are involved in?
Sii Katowice conducts projects for the largest companies in banking, automotive, industrial, railway and automation and robotics sectors. Specialist teams are made up of JAVA, .NET, ASP.NET, C #, C, C ++, Python and PLC experts, Eplan, Robotics, Manual and Automation Testers.
Maciej Sipko, who joined Sii Poland in 2016 as Java Developer, is involved in the project for one of the clients from the banking sector. Currently, as a Technical Leader, he is responsible for the development and maintenance of the system for electronic document circulation and process management.
– For 2 years I have been involved in the use of machine learning methods to automate these processes and prepare a platform for the implementation of tools written in Python. As a result of combining many roles I can develop in several areas: Java, Python, Machine Learning – says Maciej Sipko, Technical Leader in Sii Poland. – My interest in the subject of artificial intelligence began at my Master’s degree course, where as part of the diploma thesis I created a system for the early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease based on magnetic resonance imaging. Thanks to Sii, I can develop my interests further. The company enabled me to participate in the ICCV conference in Seoul, where I was one of 8 Poles among 7 500 participants. This is one of the two largest events in the world that deal with the subject of machine vision. The solutions presented there have made me aware of both wide applicability and the amazing progress that is taking place in this area every year. I like to share knowledge, therefore soon I will conduct a workshop related to this topic for my colleagues from the branch – he adds
It also happens that employees think about changing the path of professional development and would like to start an adventure in a completely new area. Thanks to the Job Changer application, everyone can submit an application for project, position or job location change. This happened in the case of Mateusz Płachta, who changed his career path, retraining from the AutoCad designer to a programmer. Currently as a Junior Software Engineer he works on creating a customer service portal for a foreign client from the industrial sector.
– Thanks to the Job Changer program, but above all the people who surround me, I was able to completely change my career path to one that gives me satisfaction every day. Why did you fall into programming? It is a profession in which one can constantly develop and learn. There is no time and room for idleness here. In the current project I deal with tasks from both the back-end
written in Java EE and the front-end based on Angular framework. Thanks to the variety of tasks I constantly acquire new skills and I would like to further develop my career towards Fullstack developer. We will see what the future brings along. For now, I do what I like and in good company – comments Mateusz Płachta, Junior Software Engineer.
For the sake of human life
Specialists from the Katowice branch also co-create rail transport safety systems used around the world. About 80 engineers are involved in projects implemented for Bombardier. These include: Kamil Górecki, Tomasz Herzog, Łukasz Hucz and Izabela Kołodziej. What exactly do they do?
– I have been in Sii for 1.5 years. In the project for Bombardier I deal with designing equipment for railway control cabinets. The greatest variety and challenge in my daily duties is maintaining contact with the production department, which receives the documentation prepared by me. I often solve appearing inaccuracies to accelerate and in the future improve the final assembly process of devices that have a direct impact on the control of semaphores, switches, maneuvering and warning discs. If no error was caught, the train dispatcher would not be able to control rail traffic – explains Kamil Górecki, Constructor.
– In most of the projects in which we are involved, human life is really at stake. Among them there are devices for transmitting information about the speed limit on a given section or those communicating between components on a locomotive and trackside equipment – adds Tomasz Herzog, Software Engineer, programming mainly in C / C ++ / C #.
Sii Katowice specialists are also part of the test team responsible for the project, which aims to monitor the basic parameters of rail devices and systems.
– It is a web-based application that collects, processes and stores data, and then presents it in a transparent way. My main tasks include test automation using Robot Framework – says Łukasz Hucz, Test Engineer.
In addition to technologically advanced projects, some of the team also face other challenges.
– Delegations and communication in German using terms in the field of railways are for me the opportunity to test and polish communication skills in a foreign language. In this case, the opportunity to participate in additional language courses offered by the company is helpful – adds Izabela Kołodziej, Junior Software Engineer.
Passion not just for technology
Sii Katowice employees not only share a passion for technology, but also spend time together on their hobbies and volunteer activities. The internal programs Passion Sponsorship and Power Volunteers, which unite enthusiasts and volunteers from all branches of Sii Poland, help this a lot.
– I really appreciate the fact that our company offers many additional activities in which we can take part, e.g. get-together trips, board games sessions, or a running group, which I have been a member since last spring. My passion towards running blossomed in 2016 and it helped me lose 20kg in just a few months. Before joining the Sii Running Team, I did not participate in professional races. I have already completed three marathons, including two half marathons as part of Sii team – says Kamil Górecki, Constructor.
In addition to the running group, a team of climbing enthusiasts is also developing in Katowice, which operates under the banner of Sii Climbing Team. Among others, some of the members are: Tomasz Herzog, Software Engineer Software . At first, it was just private get-togethers of a handful of friends from work. Later, thanks to the support of the HR department, we managed to organize a larger team that operates under the Passion Sponsorship Program. In spring, the group organizes a joint trip to the Krakow-Częstochowa Upland, to which enthusiasts from other branches of Sii Poland will join as well.
Teams that receive support under the Passion Sponsorship Program are not just sport groups. One of the most interesting projects is the construction of Sumo Robot.
– When the next Battlebots season was created in 2019, it turned out that there were several people in our Katowice branch who would like to build a fighting robot. We decided to join our efforts and submit an application to the Passion Sponsorship Program. We decided on a robot from the category referred to as Sumo Standard, i.e. a running Sumo robot fighting autonomously, with a maximum weight of 3 kg and a width and length not exceeding 20 cm. We managed to get the funding, and at the moment we already have our own testing ring in Sii called “dohyo” and a prototype version of a moving robot. We are preparing for the Jurabot robot competition, which will take place on May 2, 2020. What do we have to do to win? We need to throw the second robot out of designated dohyo – comments Tomasz Herzog, Software Engineer.
In Sii Katowice there are also many initiatives related to volunteering. Among them, there are workshops for seniors, whose idea is to fight the digital exclusion of older people.
– As I have been involved socially for many years, it was natural for me to take advantage of the opportunities offered by Sii Power Volunteers. As part of the program, I decided to organize computer classes for seniors. It would seem that today everyone can easily use new technologies. Unfortunately, among seniors there are people who struggle with it and need help to learn basic activities – says Łukasz Hucz, Test Engineer.
Another initiative that united the volunteers from all Sii Poland branches was Katowice’s endeavour, in which the rooms adjacent to the magnetic resonance imaging laboratory of John Paul II Upper Silesian Children’s Health Center were painted and decorated. Over 25 employees of Sii Katowice have been involved in the event.
The Sii Katowice team is constantly developing dynamically. Currently, Java, .NET Fullstack, Scrum Masters and Java Automation Testers are in demand. Projects that specialists can join include, among others, banking sector and more specifically the development of a system personalizing messages based on user behavior on the network or a platform that supports cashless payments. Other projects are related to the expansion of the system for managing hotel chains in the world. And these are just some of the solutions that experts at Sii Katowice are working on. Due to the expansion plans, the company changes location – it has chosen .KTW I, a modern facility in the very center of the city. The leader of IT and engineering services will occupy the new office space from September this year.
More information about job offers in Sii Katowice can be found in the career tab.