Software Developer at FOSS
"I think it's really exciting that the software we develop is used for something very specific and real, like seeing what’s in your food. And now, we have just finalised a ‘first-of-its-kind’ instrument where I have been part of the development team all the way from the start. That has been very interesting”, says Martin Kofoed, Lead Architect and Software Developer at FOSS.
As software developer for new generation instruments, Martin develops software for completely new, first-in-the-world instruments that measure and analyse important food parameters in raw- and processed food, all the way from farm to supermarket. In his other role as Lead Architect, he is responsible for current PC software architecture as well as future development in this area. Most FOSS instruments have embedded software, often supplemented with an integrated PC solution that analyses the data and makes it easy for customers to use in their business.
The possibility to work with physical instruments, as well as the prospect of being part of a value-based family company with long term visions, attracted him to the job and was the reason why he chose FOSS instead of a start-up or another large company.
“Here software plays a key role in the instruments and is more than ‘just’ pure software”, Martin supplements. “I feel I can contribute to a positive development in the world. FOSS is a family company and is built upon strong values and strategies. This also means a stable business focused on the right priorities regardless of market conjunctions and a work place where you can concentrate and focus on long term projects.”
Working in project teams
All instruments are developed in teams, where Martin’s contribution is software development and implementation. During the development process, Martin is involved in solving all types of problems along the way; “Often the problems are not software problems, but problems which can be solved by using software.”
For Martin it means a lot to have good colleagues: “The R&D team is very social and the people are very open, which is great, and I really like the way we work in FOSS. We collaborate across functions and everyone is just very open, friendly, willing to share information and very helpful. This also means that we can create the best solutions.”
The latest instrument Martin was part of creating, called MilkoStream FT, is a first in the world solution: “Working with developing new instruments and solutions basically means a very varied work day. Since I started, there have always been new exiting challenges on the table, and I really like that. The special thing about MilkoStream FT is that it measures constantly around the clock, directly in the pipes in big diaries. This also meant that we needed to test it directly in the dairies, in addition to our own test facilities at the FOSS Innovation Centre. Testing directly at the customer site, to see how it acted, was really interesting.”
Instruments consist of many different components. This means that all instruments are developed by a team consisting of many professions. Here Martin works closely together with hardware engineers, quality engineers, mechanical engineers, electro engineers, chemometricians etc. and lately a user experience specialist from software has joined the group. This constellation ensures that everyone learns from each other, gaining insight into the workings of each profession.
Internal career moves
Martin has been at FOSS for more than 4 years and the job is still really interesting. But if Martin wants to move to another position or job type, he can do that within FOSS and that makes a difference:
“It’s great to know that I don’t have to look outside FOSS for new opportunities. I prefer the opportunity to stay with my good colleagues and the company. If I want to develop into a new role, there is a possibility to move inside FOSS and into a new position. This way we all get even better and the knowledge stays in the house.”
FOSS Software is a part of the R&D department in Hillerød, currently employing more than 200 skilled engineers, mathematicians and software developers, many at Ph.D. level. Software is also an area which is growing in FOSS, and now covers more than a third of the R&D department.
The software team works with specification, development, testing and UI design organised in functional units allocated to Network solutions, PC Software and Embedded Systems. As our customers expect more and more functionality, our solutions are moving away from the traditional Client/Server SW to a higher degree of web enabled solutions. New technologies are for instance C#, Visuel Studio, TFS, TypeScript and we use SCRUM as a development method.
Watch video with Søren, Project Manager at FOSS who shares how we develop new instruments:
3400 Hillerød FOSS is managed from Hillerød, Denmark where also the newly built FOSS Innovation Centre is located. Globally we are more than 1400 people and a third of us works in Denmark. Around 200 people are working in Product Innovation and a third of them works with Software.
Our analytical instruments are marketed and sold through a global network of sales subsidiaries in 28 countries and by more than 85 dedicated distributors spread over Europe, North, South and Central America, Africa, Asia, and Australia.
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