The story of Tomasz Kluza, Delivery Manager at Sii Poland, proves that development and pursuing goals can lead to extraordinary achievements. Working at the company for more than ten years, Tomek has made a fascinating journey from application administrator to manager of a team of almost 80 people. In the interview, he reveals the behind-the-scenes of his career, shares his reflections on the company’s changes, and explains why the decision to join Sii was one of the best of his life.
You have been working for Sii since 2012. How did it happen that you joined our organization?
After three years of dealing with the administration of various systems – WWW, mail, and internal systems, and working within the Informatics Center at a university in Poznan, I felt that it was time for a challenge on a larger scale. I dreamed of working for an international company where I could use English daily.
I decided to participate in the recruitment process for the application and systems administrator position at Sii. After the initial interview, I also decided to try my hand at recruiting for one of the oldest IT companies in the world, with a branch in Wroclaw.
Unexpectedly, after successfully recruiting for this company, Sii also came back to me with positive information, presenting interesting project details and an attractive proposal for cooperation. At the time, I faced a difficult choice. However, looking back over the years, I’m convinced I made the right decision. Joining Sii was a step that allowed me to grow both professionally and personally, surrounded by innovative projects and inspiring people.
Since the beginning of your career at Sii, you’ve been working for the Poznan branch. What differences have occurred there over more than a decade?
When I started working for Sii in Poznan, the branch numbered only a few dozen people. It was the period when the company moved to Glogowska Street. Back then, we knew not only the names of everyone in the branch but also what they did, for whom, and why. We met in the office for various reasons – language courses, board games, events, or team-building trips.
I had to work exclusively from the client’s headquarters in Malta Office Park then. Still, I often visited the Sii office for the activities mentioned earlier and meetings. This situation changed after about two years, when most people started working directly from Sii’s office, mainly due to the decision of a significant client to “cloud consultants,” i.e., work from their own locations.
At that time, remote work was rare, and empty project rooms were hard to imagine. I admit that I sometimes miss that atmosphere of a very active office. However, it’s more than just the work culture that has changed. Both at my client and at Sii, there have been significant changes for the better. As the business has grown in scale, we have introduced many processes and tools that make work easier. Particularly important have been programs that support employee development and initiatives that allow us to influence what happens in our city, for example, through various charity and CSR-supporting events.
You took your first professional steps at Sii, working on a project for a large client in the medical industry. What were your responsibilities like then?
In my first project at Sii, I had the pleasure of acting as an application administrator in an international team, with half of the people working from India and the other half – from Poland. I dealt with various tasks, from resolving incidents to performing maintenance activities. Implementation was complicated, with numerous steps to learn about tools, applications, and documentation processes in validated systems.
Quite quickly, however, my interests began to shift. I accepted an offer from the client to join a new targeted team and focused on the implementation processes and care of the environments. This allowed me to develop skills in working with Oracle databases and JBoss servers and gain my first experience with automating deployment work using solutions such as HPOO.
What’s more, those early days at Sii were crucial for developing teamwork skills with people from different locations, such as Asia, Europe, and the US. It was a unique experience that taught me the value of effective communication and collaboration at different levels of the organization. It was a time of intense learning and adaptation that certainly shaped me as a professional and helped me understand the value of diversity and innovation in the work environment.
After almost two years, you became Team Leader, and since 2016 you’ve been working as Delivery Manager.
That’s right, at some point, there was a proposal for me to fully take over the team I was working with daily. This coincided with the intense growth of the team and discussions between the client and Sii about more advanced forms of business. So, I took on the new role of Team Leader. Soon after, I was offered the chance to run a large additional area, first as Team Leader and then as Delivery Manager.
Thus, my role became much more complex. I am responsible for the execution of contracts for 94 people, managing a team of 76 employees, and developing engagement with the client. It’s a challenge that’s hard to compare to the role of a Team Leader, whose responsibilities focus on one team and streamlining the day-to-day work.
Nowadays, a large part of the tasks is carried out by people in the role of Service Coordinator. I operate in the so-called background, focusing on developing experts directly working in the teams and dealing with the challenges that arise. It’s an exciting and dynamic role that allows me to influence many different company areas and work with a diverse team of talented professionals.
What do you find most rewarding in your current position? What do you consider to be your professional successes and failures?
First, I must emphasize that I cannot complain about boredom! My current focus is improving my skills in implementing change in organizations and supporting individuals, teams, and the entire organization in these challenges. This is due to major changes on the client side, which is going through a complete redevelopment of its structure.
The greatest satisfaction in the Delivery Manager role? Developing and supporting the implementation of a plan to move forward and meet both the client’s and our internal expectations for individual development. As a Line Manager, I am proud of my areas’ very low turnover rate of 1.4%. This not only obligates me to work hard for the teams but is also the best possible thanks.
Failure for me is mainly when a personnel conflict still needs to be resolved. Unpleasant consequences are also sometimes the wrong decisions of the client, which disrupt its operations and introduce new quality risks. In these moments, I try to act like a good advocate, pointing out the risks and helping as best I can.
Looking at your profile, I noticed that you engage in many activities beyond your daily professional duties – evidenced, for example, by the badge you earned in the Siimification program.
For me, the key is balance. Of course, working as Delivery Manager at Sii is time-consuming and requires a lot of attention, but I consider my interests and hobbies equally important.
Dancing, especially Cuban salsa, and mambo, gives me energy and helps take my mind off my daily challenges. Running with the Sii Running Team is a great workout and a way to socialize with colleagues. On the other hand, astronomy allows me to look at the universe from a different perspective, which often inspires me to think in a broader context. As for being involved in local CSR activities, this is a way for me to give something back to society and participate consciously.
I believe that these diverse interests not only enrich my life but also help me be more creative and sustainable in my professional role. Combining passion with professional responsibility can be extremely rewarding.
Finally, please tell us to whom you would recommend working at Sii.
Working at Sii can attract any expert in the IT field – thanks to our broad scale of operations. I would especially recommend the company to those seeking a stable, long-term professional relationship. It’s important to us to be committed to what we do, work as a team, and care about a good working atmosphere.
When I recruit, I always look for the person first and only secondarily pay attention to their measurable competencies. Who you are as a person, how you communicate, and how you can influence others is of great importance to me. This sets us apart and allows us to create teams that are productive and work together in harmony.
If these values are crucial to you, Sii may be the place where you find yourself professionally and can grow with us.