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Corporate development @civity 2019

This year, we have shaped and accompanied change processes for many of our customers, but a lot has also happened at civity itself. We have opened up new fields of business, strengthened our data team, moved to wonderful new premises on Wallstrasse next to the river Spree and we reorganised our communications. Achim Tack, Caroline von Stülpnagel and Wiebke Preuß take a look at the highlights of internal corporate development @civity 2019.

Can you tell us about events this year that were important for civity and for you personally?

Wiebke Preuß: In 2019, I worked together with some colleagues to intensify our external communications. One of the concrete results of this exciting process is our quarterly newsletter in which we regularly report on important topics, projects and developments at civity. We have also strengthened our presence in social media.

In addition to our ‘matters’ studies, we also developed a new, compact format called ‘market focus’. I myself contributed to the first issue which is dedicated to the Development of the M&A market in the transport sector.

Achim Tack: Our data team participated in two hackathons this year, which are always a welcome change from our usual project work. It is always great fun to bring an idea from an empty whiteboard to a working prototype within just 24 hours. We also use these events as a teambuilding and technology test platform – if something doesn’t work the way it’s supposed to, it’s no big deal in these competitions.

The content of the two hackathons was an innovative analysis of Hamburg’s transport network and a machine-learning approach to predicting water consumption in Leipzig, for which we were even awarded the audience prize.

Many of our colleagues are actively involved in our internal growth and development process.

Caroline von Stülpnagel: Last year, our team grew more than ever before. With nine new colleagues, we now have more than 40 civitians at our two locations in Hamburg and Berlin. We are supporting this growth process by actively working on the topics of leadership, culture and processes. It is great that not only the partners and project managers, but also many other colleagues actively contribute to these processes. It’s very exciting to be able to help shape organisational development and change in your own company in this way!

Due to this growth, we soon ran out of space at our offices at Hackescher Markt. Therefore, our move in August to new bright offices in an elegant old building on Wallstraße in Berlin-Mitte was a real highlight for us in 2019. In true civity style, the office is not only oriented towards new co-operative forms of work, but has also been given its very own flair.

Data collection and evaluation are becoming more and more relevant for our customers and for us too as a company. Two years ago, civity created its own data team for this purpose. Can you give us an insight into the tasks and projects of this team?

Achim Tack: The data team is not really a new development at civity, after all, long before the team was set up we already had analysts working with the consultants to conduct more complex business and data research and analysis. Consolidating and actively developing these colleagues and their expertise in a separate team has, however, significantly accelerated and professionalised the process once again.

We collect and analyse sometimes very large or special raw data sets and interpret them together with our consultants. In this way, we provide the material that can be used to prepare reports and presentations. Customer projects are increasingly so special that analysts handle essential process steps as well as (partial) project management, thus increasingly blurring the boundaries between consultants and analysts.

In 2019, civity published extensive stand-up electric scooter evaluations that met with great interest in the press, social media and politics. How do projects like these emerge?

Achim Tack: As analysts, we can do a good job especially when we listen to the problems of our target markets. By May at the latest, it was clear that the topic of micromobility, which had already made waves in other European countries, would also become a hot topic in Germany.

With our extensive evaluations of the launch of the stand-up electric scooters in Germany, we certainly have our finger firmly on the pulse.

Caroline von Stülpnagel: In a small team of consultants and analysts, we first considered which evaluations were possible and then created a corresponding concept based on this. The project started on a relatively small scale and was gradually expanded to include additional topics. The great public response shows us that we firmly have our finger on the pulse with these evaluations of stand-up electric scooters in Germany and other parts of Europe.

Wiebke Preuß: A second issue that has been of particular concern to the industry since the summer is the widely demanded reduction in public transport fares, in particular, the introduction of a €365 annual pass. In this context, we published a matters study in July using the city of Vienna as an example. Another comprehensive study on the importance of corporate culture for the successful digital transformation of transport companies was published in October.

With two locations in Hamburg and Berlin, a growing team and projects in the DACH region and other European countries, you don’t get to see your colleagues very often. How do you still manage to maintain the team spirit?

Wiebke Preuß: It can happen that you won’t see some colleagues for a while, but in the medium term our alternating project teams guarantee that you do have contact with almost all colleagues. There is, of course, the yearly kale or turkey dinner, the company outing or the Christmas party, when there is time to relax and exchange ideas with colleagues who you have not seen for a long time.

Achim Tack: The analysts work with weekly stand-ups and have a very close exchange via video chats, which we also use for short discussions. It is also important for us to have good accessibility during working hours, which we guarantee using collaboration tools, such as Slack and Github.

Caroline von Stülpnagel: Finally, we also deliberately introduced formats in which we regularly exchange information on industry and technical topics. This topic and our internal team development in general will remain important focal points for us in 2020, and we are already looking forward to them today.