Life as … a Service Delivery Manager – Pieter Van Doninck


The majority of our Tobania world (called “the galaxy” according to our Tobians) is populated by our consultants. Each with their own expertise strapped to their backpacks, they head out to our client’s workplace to deliver targeted projects. Perhaps at yours as well? Well, time to get to know them personally! Featured in this edition: Pieter Van Doninck, Service Delivery Manager.

“At the moment, I would describe a Service Delivery Manager (SDM) – Squad Lead as some kind of jack-of-all-trades. There is a lot of customer contact every day, as you are involved from the very first steps within a new project: the quotation. Shortly after that, the first steps within the project delivery are carried out, namely the analysis. Here, as SDM, you work closely with your development team and the customer to deliver a quality product that is tailored to the customer’s needs. Even after delivery, this customer collaboration continues in order to determine valuable additions to the application or business processes we have implemented.

As an SDM, you also keep an eye on the capacity and planning of the team and make sure everyone is challenged and learns on a daily basis.”

– Pieter Van Doninck

Can you briefly introduce yourself, Pieter?

My name is Pieter Van Doninck. I studied Software Management at PXL Hogeschool and in September I will start my fifth year at Tobania. Although I actually joined the company a little earlier as an intern. One of the things I like to do in my free time is to practice sports.


What makes working as a Service Delivery Manager so unique?

As I mentioned above in the job description, as an SDM you become a jack-of-all-trades, so every day has a different set of challenges and new opportunities for you to grow.


How would your colleagues describe you? 

They would probably describe me as direct, respectful and problem-solving.


What is your go-to productivity trick?

Creating a set of weekly objectives. As an SDM, there are often important or high-priority items that take up your time away from the original schedule you had in mind. Visualising these originally planned items using a checklist and marking them as done when you can squeeze them in, will help you monitor your progress. Moreover, you will increase your productivity to finish that list for the week.

““Think beyond your own team or project. Share knowledge and involve other people who may already have expertise in an area that you have not yet reached.””

How can you stand out as a Service Delivery Manager?

Think beyond your own team or project. In our business unit there are currently more teams working together. Share the knowledge you have already gained in your projects and involve other people who may already have expertise in an area that you have not yet reached.


If you could go back in time, what would you say to yourself at the beginning of your career?

Don’t lose sleep over things you can’t control. There are many factors that are out of your hands. It is important that you learn to cope with them, but not that you try to control them, which will cause a considerable amount of stress.


What gives you a professional high?

A successful delivery of any kind with the team. For example, delivering a new feature according to a new methodology. Any kind of successful implementation is a great confidence boost for the team and a great reassurance about having the right mindset and approach.

““Thanks to the continuous guidance of my mentors, I have learned a lot within a short period of time and I have grown enormously.””

Do you have any mentors in your professional life?

I have two great mentors in my professional life, Geert Vanden Boer and Marc Meers. When I started at Tobania almost five years ago, I immediately started working in the analysis phase of an on-going project. There were a lot of new things to consider, but thanks to the continuous guidance of Geert and Marc I have learned a lot within a short period of time and I have grown enormously. I am still working with them on a daily basis and learning things from them.


Do you have the ambition to be a mentor for others? 

Of course. I think that sharing knowledge is an important aspect in a professional environment and a mentor therefore plays a crucial role.


Why should a fellow Service Delivery Manager join you at Tobania?

  • You get enough responsibility to create your own character and your own way of doing things.
  • You can solve problems and face different challenges on a daily basis.
  • You get great satisfaction from working in your own efficient team.
  • You will meet many different types of people, each of whom demonstrates their expertise in a particular way.