Together with its sister company Sportcity, Fit For Free is the second largest sport clubs chain in the Netherlands. The competitive fitness industry is regarded as a so-called slow adopter of technology. No longer, if these two chains have anything to say on the matter because with their groundbreaking digital products they are going to shake up the market. Within this process, the Technology Lead is responsible for all technological decisions.
About Fit For Free
Unleashing a true online fitness revolution, that’s what Fit For Free and Sportcity have in mind. Olympus Investment, the parent company of both brands, aspires to become a state-of-the-art health and fitness platform. Following the acquisition by Bencis Capital Partners in 2018, a new management team has started to realize this ambition. An important element in all this is the focus on ‘digital fitness’.
The digital transformation is in full swing. Based on a successful pilot, a new app was launched at the end of 2019 to help members achieve their personal health goals. As it turns out, many members lose their motivation to exercise due to a lack of personalization and the feeling that they don’t have time. The new product, therefore, offers personalized workouts that you can add to your own online calendar. Furthermore, the app works with a machine-learning-based algorithm. The more someone uses the app, the more personalized it becomes.
This is just the beginning. Olympus Investment is working on an integrated fitness journey that goes beyond the confines of the gym. The year 2020 will, therefore, have a strong emphasis on doing a lot of research, product development as well as designing and building new features. The focus is on groundbreaking functionalities inside, but especially outside the gym.
“Our main goal is to become the number one health app. We are focusing on exercise and beyond. Think of it as a kind of life coach. This app is in line with our mission of ageing in a happy & healthy fashion.” – Tim de Jardine, Chief Product Officer
The basis is already there, but there is still a lot of work to be done to reach the level of ‘gym 2.0’. That is why a new team is currently being formed to further expand this digital transition. Starting with a tech-savvy mind in charge of creating a product that helps people develop new fitness habits; this person is the Technology Lead.
Vacancy: Technology Lead
The experienced Technology Lead is the visionary force behind all technological solutions and constantly thinks outside the box during this process. How do I make the right architectural decisions to ensure the future-proof building of the company? A question that is bound to keep the Technology Lead up at night. In addition to an eye for flashy technology, he/she also has great commercial awareness. This person easily gets inside the mind of the desired app-user.
The design of the technical architecture and associated products is in the hands of the Technology Lead. He/she builds prototypes and researches new tech-based solutions. In all decisions, the customer is key. Data on customer behavior and A/B testing determine the next steps which are to be taken. This seasoned developer has a thorough knowledge of Ruby on Rails, PostgreSQL and Heroku and ideally should also be able to do functional programming in Scala. In addition to a pragmatic attitude, adaptability is an important competence.
The Technology Lead easily strikes the balance between moving too fast and developing a product that is too perfect. The building process is in fact synonymous with a learning curve and does not immediately have to yield a ready-to-use final product. In addition, he/she guides the project teams in the areas of coding techniques, continuous integration (CI) and continuous deployment (CD). He/she also directs the tech team on the basis of code and performance assessments.
For this leadership role, having a high level of empathy is essential. The ideal candidate loves to coach tech talent, recognizes everyone’s strengths within the team and knows how to put them to strategic use. The Technology Lead shares this role with the Product Manager who is responsible for end-to-end team output.
Furthermore, this duo works closely together to align the product roadmap and the possibilities within the tech stack.
Thanks to the Technology Lead’s excellent communication skills, complex technological decisions are always in line with the organization. Initially, this person has four direct reports, but this number will increase in 2020. He/she reports to Tim de Jardine, Chief Product Officer and will be working from a new office in Amsterdam.