A dark-haired man with a beared wearing a navy jumper standing outside with grass behind him.
Victor Navas Santajuana. Image: Johnson & Johnson EDC

What kind of health projects is Johnson & Johnson EDC working on?

3 Apr 2019

Johnson & Johnson EDC is determined to use technology-powered solutions to totally revolutionise the world of healthcare. We caught up with one of its software engineers to see what exciting stuff he has been working on.

You may know Johnson & Johnson as a producer of household staples, but the company’s scope is far larger than just that. The height of its innovation is really exemplified at its Limerick EMEA development centre, Johnson & Johnson EDC.

We got in touch with software engineer Victor Navas Santajuana to find out more about the projects he is currently working on and what a typical day in his role entails.

What is your role within Johnson & Johnson EDC?

I’m a software engineer for Johnson & Johnson EDC in Limerick, currently working on the mobile applications team.

If here is such a thing, can you describe a typical day in the job?

Coffee, gloves and bike! Coming to work with no traffic, in approx 20 minutes.

The day starts with our daily stand-ups. After checking pending mails from the previous day, it’s catch-up time with the team. We have a quick project meeting with all concerned and we align between ourselves, checking the key tasks that need our focus.

In a regular day, we pick stories from the backlog, and we take these and split them between teams of two. I thoroughly enjoy this as it has allowed me to learn four new technologies in just one year.

What types of project do you work on?

We are working on lot of different projects; these days, I am focused on the Care4Today project, which is a healthcare mobile application that helps patients to manage their health and wellness goals, while keeping track of their progress. It doesn’t just send them medication reminders, but it also helps patients monitor their activity and create reports that are shared with their healthcare provider.

At Johnson and Johnson, innovation is always encouraged. This has given me the opportunity to develop a personal project that is now being used for managing meeting room bookings in our organisation.

I’ve been lucky enough to be involved in other cutting-edge technologies such as augmented reality (AR). We have recently completed a project to help operators with the correct set-up and configuration of production lines while ensuring the quality of those changes. In addition, we have completed a proof of concept, where operators can be guided with AR displaying machines in the real world, showing them exactly how they can effectively use machines.

What skills do you use on a daily basis?

In my current position, there is a combination of both management and technical skills required, but I would safely say that soft skills are the catalyst for a good team dynamic.

My main skill is to write quality code with the ability to transfer and share ideas to the team. Without doubt, this provides a good working environment to thrive in and it certainly impacts positive results.

What is the hardest part of your working day?

The most challenging part of my day is to make sure I get through my planned stories and tasks. It can be very technical, and the challenges vary. There can be lots of complex problems that we solve by being a great team of talented people who are always willing to help each other, with any specific questions and ideas.

Do you have any productivity tips that help you through the working day?

One of my beliefs is to always think, and work, from the point of view of the end user of our application. It’s very important to think about more than just the code, but rather what the end user needs and what they want to achieve.

I work closely with our business partners to clearly understand the value of the application requirements so that our apps will really help patients on their path to recovery. If we bear this in mind, we can be successful for our customer and ourselves.

When you first started this job, what were you most surprised to learn was important in the role?

After working in many other different companies, the one thing that has resonated with me most is the Johnson & Johnson EDC credo. Our credo is our moral code of values, challenging us to put people first, no matter what, and so this guides me in everyday work conversations and in how I solve technical problems.

It helps our team to focus on doing the right thing for our patients and customers, always. It helps us to make the right decisions when implementing a feature, even if the solution takes a little longer. You will always be supported by the team and the leaders.

How has this role changed as this sector has grown and evolved?

It has changed a lot. I joined the EDC’s SAP teams and I have moved to our mobile application teams. The EDC has helped to transform how Johnson & Johnson develops software solutions, from Waterfall to Agile, and four years on it feels like a different company.

We have refined processes, helped to eliminate waste and maintained the maximum levels of quality in what we do. In healthcare, quality is critical to ensure we develop applications our customers and patients can trust.

What do you enjoy most about the job?

I work with many different cultures, which include colleagues from Spain, Ireland, Italy, China – in fact, colleagues from 27 different countries. Fundamentally, these cultures give me a wider perspective, while creating innovative solutions that challenge me in so many ways that I could never have imagined. It feels like one big family.

We also have a very active sports and social club and we are highly encouraged to participate. We have monthly activities – playing soccer, kayaking, cinema, escape rooms – and we also get free access to the UL Arena 50-metre swimming pool and gym.

Want to work at Johnson & Johnson EDC? Check out the Johnson & Johnson careers page for current vacancies.

Updated, 5.02pm, 3 April 2019: A previous version of this article misidentified Victor Navas Santajuana in the lead image, which has now been replaced.

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