Meet Hendrik, our Head of Data Science
Our Data team is responsible for making sure all teams at Tide know what’s happening in the business and why! We’d love for you to meet the people that make the Data team – so here’s our Head of Data Science, Hendrik!
👋 Hey Hendrik! Introduce yourself in a sentence
Hey! I’m Hendrik, I love building teams and I’m on a mission to drive data-based decisions at Tide.
What’s your background and how did you get into Data Science?
When I was younger I wanted to become a quantitative trader (someone who writes algorithms in order to automatically trade in the stock market). So I went to study economics and maths, and ended up starting a PhD in probability theory. During the course of my studies I realised that I was craving a faster paced environment. Therefore, I decided to leave academia behind and begin my career as a Data Scientist at a credit company where I was consulting at the time.
Even though my first role was typical data-science work, my job-title was quant-lead. I built the company’s first risk model and helped to deploy it, and through this project I slowly began to realise that I was doing data-science work all along! I always enjoyed strategising how to compete in games (I competed at a national level in chess ♚), so I am very glad that I found a way to optimise decisions professionally too!
How would you explain your role to someone who isn’t familiar with your area?
I’m building the data function at Tide, which basically means I’m helping the business to make decisions based on data, both manually and automatically.
My team is split into two areas. One part is called Analytics. In this area we have people working closely with the teams throughout the business to help them utilise their data and drive them to make decisions in a data driven way. One way we do this is setting up experiments in order to test their hypothesis.
The other area is called Decisioning. Here we are pairing data experts with engineers to make decisions based on information which has been produced just seconds before by users in the app. For example, there is a decisioning team working on matching customer receipts with the corresponding payment that they made through Tide.
What made you want to join Tide?
I briefly started my own company in 2017 and I know Tide from being a member of their SME community. Later in my career I worked briefly with Oliver, our current CEO, and Amit, who is leading our credit team, at a company in Berlin. We really enjoyed working together and so I thought it would be a lot of fun to reform the team!
What’s the most interesting challenge you’ve come across since you joined Tide?
Managing the growth of my team was the biggest challenge. We scaled from 3 to 12 people in my first 6 months and I feel that requires us to constantly adapt in order for our processes and structures to hold up. But for me, this is the exact challenge that I want to have at this point of my life.
Can you describe your team in 3 words:
What are you most looking forward to this year?
For me, continuing to grow and nurture the team throughout 2020. We’ll be distributed over three countries by the end of next year, so figuring out the best way for us to work in a highly distributed way is another challenge that I am looking forward to!
What’s your favourite desk snack?
When you’re not at Tide, what’s your favourite thing to do?
I like playing all sorts of games, chess, poker 🃏 and hearthstone, but in terms of sports, my go-to game is squash.