Once upon a time… Philippine, Assistant Product Manager in Connected Services for Renault
When she started her studies, Philippine’s aspired to become a diplomat. Today, her career is advancing in a world of engineers, in which she claims to feel “completely legitimate”. Discover the portrait of this ALTEN consultant, from the latest issue of the “Tales of Women Engineers” Portfolio.
“Nothing predestined me for rapid development in a field as technical as connected services. However, with tenacity and rigor I was able to become an advisor within the Renault teams on connected services for electric vehicles “, says Philippine.
Unrelated to diplomacy? “Not entirely true,” she says: ” I transcribe technical problems into user language while adapting them to marketing objectives, a balancing act at the crossroads of several worlds: digital, IT, marketing and communication.”
“In the automotive industry, there are many enthusiasts
who have satisfied my thirst for learning”
Not having to prove that she is the right person for the job is the credo of this born adventurer. When she joined the teams at Renault, Philippine was fully aware of the fact that she was entering the so-called “male” automotive industry. But she had the humility to understand the challenge that she was to take on: “I did not know the specifics of a technical flowchart or a car engine, but that was good because it was neither my training nor my field that I wanted to make my core business!
What interested me was being the bridge between the technical teams for the design of connected services and the people who promote them , so that these two worlds with two distinct languages do not collide.”
Her transparency about her desire to put her communication and marketing skills to use in the automotive industry proved to Philippine’s colleagues that she wanted to learn.
“Of course, I dared to ask questions about whatever wasn’t clear to me when I had to make my mark in this new technical environment. These questions brought a new and practical perspective to the operational teams, thus encouraging sharing. In the automotive industry, there are many enthusiasts who have satisfied my thirst for learning.”
User expectations that guide technical aspects
Philippine draws a link between engineering teams that operate in silos and agile teams that develop applications that allow users of electric vehicles to use their connected services.
Given the never-ending collision that occurs between these two worlds, Philippine strives to increase interactions, streamline the exchange of information and translate the language of each, the languages of engineers and developers not resembling that of the user.
” It is difficult for engineers and developers to detach themselves from technical language when they speak it 100% of the time. I’m here to help them bridge the gap with the user , who will not understand if we talk to him about “HVAC scheduling” for example but instead “scheduling air conditioning or heating in the vehicle.”
My mission is to verify that all the connected services are correctly transcribed in each of the supports, application or on-board multimedia system with those which the user will interface.” Philippine strives to put the user at the heart of technical thinking.
This project, which she has been supporting for 2 years, is a constant source of learning :
“There is no comfort zone in connected services, nor any two days that are the same! These are new subjects that are constantly changing and very challenging, because it is not only a question of developing applications but also of interlinking them to the electronic architecture of the vehicle, an object in constant motion.
Since the beginning of the project, I have not stopped expanding my scope of actions. This is what makes my mission so heavy and exciting.
“My experience at ALTEN makes me feel like I’ve lived several lives in the space of 2 years”
“Digital project manager, communicator, product manager, marketing manager, conductor, facilitator, coordinator…” Philippine is now recognized as a key person in her field.
“The beginning certainly required an adjustment period, but curiosity is the key. I attended all the technical meetings to learn how to master the main operating principles of connected services.”
It is this ability to speak several languages that ALTEN has identified in Philippine and which the Group wished to encourage :
“I was chosen to be Site Referent, in other words the guarantor of team cohesion and the transmission of key information to consultants working on the same client site. My strong communication skills were promoted so that I can play a unifying role within the ALTEN teams at Renault.”
Once upon a time… A chameleon at heart
Philippine acquired this ease of being able to move from one environment to another thanks to her journey, the common thread of which was diversity, cultural but also professional :
a year of backpacking in China just after obtaining her baccalaureate, double major in law and Mandarin, internship in Beijing and Qingdao at the Pays de la Loire Representative Office to study the chances of French business growing in China, followed by web development for a start-up cosmetics company, head of a test pop-up store to identify customer expectations…
“I understood that one could develop the most magical product there is, but that it was nothing without good communication and the creation of a coherent universe around it.” With her experience behind her, which aroused her interest in innovation, communication and marketing, Philippine refined her choices during her last year of study: “I wanted to do IT project management in conjunction with the developers to create new platforms, to be able to put my creativity to use and add an international and field-based dimension to my work”.
It was at a work-study at Disney France headquarters that Philippine, as Head of the Disney Extras loyalty program and CRM (Customer Relationship Management), was able to expand her skills in digital project management and strengthen her capacities to become part of the world of IT. An adaptation that would be used to promote a fun and original user experience: ” It was after working at Disney, where I was immersed in a bewitching creative environment, that I wanted to launch a new challenge to see how far my creativity could go: join a sector of activity that we don’t think of as being creative in the first place, because it’s not easy to sell a creatively connected service!” Challenge met for Philippine!
Discover all the portraits of ALTEN’s women consultants
in the Portfolio “Tales of Women Engineers” n°4.