Technology

IT & more

IT & more

IT is a Bydgoszcz specialty on the Polish market of modern business services. This is evidenced by, among others, a high concentration of IT companies in the City, which makes Bydgoszcz one of the leading locations chosen by global technology companies. Local competences and an attractive investment environment of the City are also important. Thanks to these, for many entities, Bydgoszcz has become a convenient place to expand business activities with more and more advanced projects, including the R&D area which is of key importance for the further development of the industry.

In Bydgoszcz, IT is responsible for approximately 80% of employment in the entire sector of modern business services. The dominant share of companies from this industry in the local structure of the sector distinguishes the City from other BSS centres in Poland. The main representatives of the sector in the City are developing specialised business processes and realise projects for the largest global IT, telecommunications, insurance, or automotive companies, confirming the highest level of services and competences of their Bydgoszcz branches. Service centres of such global corporations as Atos, Nokia, Asseco and Sii, already existing in Bydgoszcz, appreciate the qualified specialists, office opportunities offered in the City, as well as the region's experience in supporting activities in this field. The competences and availability of staff, convenient location or the City's attractive investment offer also encourage new entities from the IT industry to enter the Bydgoszcz market.

The prospect of further development of the IT industry in Bydgoszcz is currently related to, among others, the dynamic growth of the e-commerce market, the development of cloud tools, data security, 5G technology, industry 4.0, and smart city solutions, as well as automation, or the possibility of cooperating with various other sectors and industries. Therefore, companies located in Bydgoszcz are not slowing down – they develop innovative technologies, invest in R&D activities, develop novel solutions and offer attractive jobs in international a global scale.

IT INNOVATIONS SERVE THE ENVIRONMENT

Atos GDC Poland has been intensively developing its activity in Bydgoszcz for years. It has become the largest entity from the BSS sector on the local market, and in 2019 it moved its headquarters here. Specialists from Bydgoszcz carry out strategic projects for global clients and participate in work on such important and prestigious projects as, for example, IT services for the Olympic Games, for the office of the Prime Minister of Belgium or the Municipal Service Center for Refugees from Ukraine in Bydgoszcz, as part of which the company launched a dedicated helpline to register refugee visits.

Atos GDC Poland develops R&D activities through the Atos + Google partnership, IOT projects and a wide range of automation activities. Moreover, in 2020 the investor decided to establish a new company focused on IT research and development – Atos Poland R&D. A separate R&D department was created as a response to the needs in the field of new technologies and innovations, as well as the implementation of end-to-end projects. Just a year after starting its operations, the company received the status of a Research and Development Centre from the Ministry of Development and Technology, and recently registered two new patents.

– The latest ideas registered by the R&D company are dedicated to deepsea shipping and concern increasing efficiency while reducing CO2 and SO2 emissions. They fit into the global Atos strategy of offering environmentally friendly solutions and developing a zero-emission IT world – emphasizes Aleksandra Tyszkiewicz,Research Lead at Atos Poland R&D.

– The number of new patents clearly shows our innovativeness. Having them increases our credibility and proves our constantly strengthening position in the field of technical solutions – comments Robert Wichłacz, member of the Atos Poland R&D management board.

Deepsense.ai, operating on the Bydgoszcz market since 2018, has also been running interesting projects that also contribute to the protection of the natural environment. The company produces advanced information systems based on artificial intelligence and deep machine learning. In addition to implementing commercial projects, it actively participates in the scientific development of these fields, and deepsense.ai teams have been occupying leading positions in prestigious global competitions in the field of advanced data analysis for years.

One of the most interesting deepsense. ai projects was the system created for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration – an American governmental institution that deals with protection of the oceanic fauna and flora. The aim of this project was to develop an automatic whale identification system based on the analysis of aerial photographs to track the migration of specific representatives of this endangered species and to develop protection over the entire population. Based on artificial intelligence and computer vision, the system successfully replaced longterm manual analyzes by researchers, reducing the process of identifying individual whales from three hours to just three minutes.

Technologically advanced solutions, in line with pro-ecological trends and the smart city idea, are also created in PIXEL in Bydgoszcz. The company produces electronic devices and IT systems primarily for the public transport market (public transport and railways). Recently, in Białystok, the company has introduced and implemented an advanced toll collection system – Smart PixBee Tariff. The latest project of PIXEL is a dynamic passenger information with displays in the ECO-SDIP e-paper technology. It is characterized primarily by a minimal power consumption which, combined with the installed photovoltaic panels, ensures energy autonomy for the devices.

 – We develop and introduce innovative solutions, thanks to which both the transport operator and travelers see benefits. As a result, we encourage passengers to use public transport as often as possible, which has a positive impact on the quality of the surrounding environment – summarizes PIXEL.

IT DEVELOPMENT IN LINE WITH THE BYDGOSZCZ TRADITION

The IT industry in Bydgoszcz has its well-established, historical traditions – it derives from the telecommunications industry, which has been rooted in the City for decades, strongly connected with the education system. Today, the over 90-year tradition of the ICT industry in Bydgoszcz is successfully continued and constantly developed by Nokia. Nokia's internal factory in Bydgoszcz, the Industrial Competence Centre (one of three in the world), deals with the integration and testing of advanced systems and ICT networks. It is also here that the company has created its Technology Centre, which combines the knowledge and experience of experts from many different departments of Nokia in one location. The largest branch of Nokia Software R&D in Poland is located in Bydgoszcz, which creates software for the largest operators in the world from the concept stage to implementation. The company is also included in the group of leaders in the field of ICT services, and the Global Services Delivery Excellence department with the Service R&D team located in Bydgoszcz is behind the success of these projects. The Bydgoszcz department deals with architecture, programming and testing of solutions that are used by telecommunications giants in the United States on a daily basis for network management, development planning and designing new services. Every day, huge amounts of data are automatically collected and processed, allowing not only to solve current problems, but also to predict potential issues. All this means that the servers in Bydgoszcz are constantly working on over a thousand projects at the same time, and the services are provided in the "follow the sun" model.

LOCAL SKILLS AND TALENTS FUEL THE INDUSTRY

It is human capital that is a strong advantage of Bydgoszcz and that is noticed by companies from the IT industry investing here. The local specialisation of the City means, among others, better access to talented specialists. Bydgoszcz has a good academic base and is constantly developing its potential in creating IT staff. Also at the level of secondary schools, the City focused on education with a technical profile, and the Electronic Technical School in Bydgoszcz is one of the best in the country. In addition, Bydgoszcz actively supports cooperation between science and business. Bydgoszcz pupils and students benefit from attractive programmes of patronage classes and courses created in cooperation with companies investing in the City.

The development of human resources for the IT industry in Bydgoszcz is also fostered by more and more initiatives popularising the research and development sector, and building a community around the industry itself. Bydgoszcz hosts, for example, meetings of specialists who exchange practical knowledge on an ongoing basis, the Bydgoszcz Hackathon initiated by the Bydgoszcz IT Cluster, the typically technical conference in the City organized by local IT companies – "bITconf", or the annual event of Nokia "IT Women", promoting science and information technology among women, showing many opportunities for professional development in the industry of modern technologies.

Bydgoszcz is a dynamically developing agglomeration with a strong technical background – notes Łukasz Mądrzak- Wecke, CTO at Wunderman Thompson Technology (WTT). – When you think about Bydgoszcz, you can think of respected universities, valuable meet-ups and meetings devoted to the industry, as well as intensive development of IT companies. The City can be proud of strong IT staff and talented young people interested in new technologies and focused on education in this direction. By running one of the offices in Bydgoszcz, we create jobs and contribute to the City's business development. We employ fantastic people who want to develop their skills and we establish partner relations with the environment. In the coming year, we will significantly expand our recruitment activities.

On the local market, WTT is also an example of an innovative approach in selecting staff:

– We extend the traditional approach based on roles and positions (Tech Lead, UI Engineer, QA Engineer, etc.) by understanding what kind of skills our employees have (skills-based approach). Instead of the role an employee plays in the project, we plan to organise work based on competences (e.g. creating architecture, fixing application errors). This will result in the development of people adjusted to the emerging project needs. We open doors (also completely remote ones) for front-end, Java, .NET programmers, project managers, AI specialists and technology enthusiasts who will feed our ranks with knowledge and innovation – comments Łukasz Mądrzak-Wecke.

– The potential of the Bydgoszcz IT industry is primarily talented specialists representing various fields, many interesting projects focused on creating more and more advanced solutions, as well as the stories of global successes of our investors. This is our local specialty, which undoubtedly constitutes a unique element of the investment offer of our City – summarises Edyta Wiwatowska, President of the Management Board of the Bydgoszcz Regional Development Agency.