Mats van Eeuwen
Amsterdam or Milan: never a dull moment
Mats initially started at ING as an intern in Business Banking, which is part of Retail Banking. He enjoyed his internship so much that he decided to apply for the Retail Banking traineeship. But he’s certainly not afraid of trying different things, as illustrated by his stint at ING in Milan.
After doing two rotations (six-month assignments within the traineeship), Mats is now working in a development team in Digital Business Banking. The team mainly comprises programmers (who Mats describes as “brilliant magicians”), plus a Customer Journey Expert and Mats himself, who is working in a dual role of Product Owner and Customer Journey Expert. “In the context of compliance and Know Your Customer, we’re working on correctly capturing the right data from business customers.”
Trying lots of different things
“I did my first rotation here, during which I also worked in a very technical team. But my second assignment was completely different. It was in the Acquisition Finance & Structured Lending team, which works on financing acquisitions by private equity parties. The great thing about the traineeship is that you can try lots of different things. I enjoyed Digital Business Banking so much that I was keen to return to it in a permanent role, and I immediately got this opportunity to do so as Product Owner. I like the fact that our team is doing some pretty complex things; that keeps the work nice and challenging for me. Otherwise, I tend to get bored quickly.”
A few weeks in Milan
It was another case of ‘never a dull moment’ when Mats got the chance to work at ING in Milan for a few weeks. “That was amazing! I was there together with another Retail trainee, and we worked really hard. I helped to coordinate ING Italy’s agile transformation, especially the strategic and operational aspects – and that included activities relating to the announcement of all kinds of organisational changes. It was a tough project and I learnt an enormous amount. I would have loved to stay there longer, but to be honest I’m grateful to have had that opportunity at all. Many other trainees haven’t been able to do any projects abroad in the past couple of years because of the pandemic.”
In at the deep end
On his return, Mats soon settled back into Digital Business Banking again. “I find it mega interesting to work with the developers and to see something we dreamt up become reality. I also like the fact that I have lots of responsibility in my role as PO; you learn a lot from having that opportunity so early on in your career. You have to deal with all kinds of stakeholders in the organisation: with senior managers, with people from the business, with the developers and architects... so you have to be able to adapt to any situation and work with everyone. You’re thrown in at the deep end as a trainee, but that’s precisely why you sign up for it. I gained a lot of theoretical knowledge at university, but this is where I’m learning what it’s really like in practice.”
Mats did an international bachelor’s in communications & media at Erasmus University, which included studying in Singapore for six months and an internship at ING Business Banking. He continued to work part-time at ING for a while during his master’s in management, which he also did at Erasmus University. Mats has recently bought a house in Rotterdam so he spends much of his spare time doing home improvements, helped by a bunch of his friends who are good at DIY. Besides that, he plays tennis and hockey and loves just being outdoors with his dogs.