Our article series «The People of KDI» continues with Erlend Holberg (31), who has been working as Customer Success Manager in the Digital Oceans team for a year. Erlend has been interested in shipping his whole life, which is reflected in his education and career choices. He has a MSC Economics & MBA from NHH (Norwegian School of Economics, Bergen), with specialization in Shipping and Energy market. He worked at our Lysaker neighbours Wilhelmsen Shipping Group for four years, before he joined KDI to help our Vessel Insight clients in running their operations smarter and more efficient.
Who is Erlend?
“I’m quite energetic and a very social person. My hobbies are quite diverse; Skiing (Telemark and jibbing), football, volleyball, running and cycling – and drumming, piano and singing are my musical outlets. I never say no to a good Karaoke-duet! I’ve been interested in shipping my whole life, and I remember receiving my first Kongsberg Merchandise in Singapore 2002 from none other than KONGSBERG CEO Geir Håøy himself. No wonder I joined Kongsberg in the end? In my younger years I lived eight years in Singapore, Belgium, France and South-Africa, before moving to a small town with a very large ski jumping-hill called Vikersund – before moving to Oslo.”
What was the most important thing for you when you were looking for a new employer?
“That´s a good question! I have some important principles I consider to be decisive. I call them “Erlend´s four E´s”:
- Energetic atmosphere – where there’s room for creative input, and knowledge sharing across divisions is highly valued. Social activities are also very important.
- Environmental focus – New technologies and improvements on current solutions is of high interest. Assisting ship owners to understand that they in fact can save money and be greener at the same time.
- Entrepreneurial focus – Understanding the real pain points of our clients and assist to overcome challenges by creating new solutions together.
- Esteemed reputation – Join a company with a good track record with mandate and position to drive change in the Maritime Industry.
"Being one of the front liners in product design and development team, I am contributing to maritime industry products to add value for customers and enable the green shift through digitalization. I wish to take on more challenging assignments in the coming years and use the opportunity to contribute with my best efforts by using my design process, methods, and best practices.”
What caught your interest with KDI?
“Actually, most of what I mentioned above! I´m also very pleased to see that we are taking steps to include team members across the organization through social events.”
What are your biggest expectations of KDI in the next coming years?
“I believe that we can and should become the new Silicon Valley for the Maritime Industry, a hub for driving digital change in the Maritime Industry, connecting ship owners, class societies, flag & port state, financial institutions and governmental bodies together with providers of digital solutions, hence creating a more transparent and efficient market. I expect us to be a trusted partner, with offerings that showcases real and clear value.”
How do you see KDI as a “gamechanging” company in the coming years?
“We see that the playing field of the game (industry standards and regulations) are changing, due to ever higher demands on capturing data on emissions, e.g., EEXI and CII. Change is often affiliated with something negative, and it is in most traditional ship owners’ nature to proceed as they always have done. I believe we can highlight and assist our clients in implementing new solutions that ease their workload, enabling them to harvest the true potential in data. In that sense we are game changers.”
What is your contribution in KDI to create game changing technology?
“I am no data scientist, so I will leave the creation of solutions to the professionals. What I will do, is to be a channel of good communication between users and developers, by bringing SAAS (Software as a Service) to our clients and making sure that they can capture the potential in data in a clear and cost-effective manner. I might sneak in one or two ideas of my own, though! If the customers are successful in their digital journey, with user friendly applications and clear positive ROI, I am successful in my role.”
Make sure to check you Erlend’s LinkedIn profile here!
DO YOU WANT TO WORK IN KONGSBERG DIGITAL?