Localization Program Manager

Bakken Research Center

Vanwege het internationale karakter van ons bedrijf en onze medewerkers hebben we hun verhalen en ervaringen in het Engels weergegeven.

"Bringing all the pieces together and with that, support Medtronic in providing global healthcare access to our patients."

Angelique lives in Bunde, together with her husband and their 7-year-old son. Family time is very important to her. Therefore, she spends a lot of time together with her loved ones: going for a hike, touring on a bike or simply playing games. At the same time, Angelique has a passion for photography and she loves to cook for family and friends. Next to that, you can find her in the gym and Angelique volunteers as a ‘reading mum’ at her son’s school.

Angelique joined Medtronic 13 years ago as a management assistant and she advanced her career to the position she is holding today.

Angelique about her position at Medtronic

I am a Medtronic Translations Localization Program Manager, responsible for the Cardiac and Vascular Group (CVG) portfolio and based at the Medtronic Bakken Research Center (BRC) in Maastricht. In this role, I oversee the complete CVG portfolio regarding translations from a software, technical literature and packaging & labeling point of view. The majority of my CVG partners is based in the USA, mainly in Minneapolis.

I hold a bachelor’s degree in ICT with a specialization in Information Management. Next to my role as a program manager, I am a Lean Sigma Black Belt and involved in various continuous improvement initiatives.

Angelique’s education and career path

I joined Medtronic as a management assistant and in this role, I was able to see many different aspects and departments of the Medtronic BRC organization. From pre- and post-market clinical studies, clinical research, statistics, data management, clinical operations, European steering committees to the general management at the BRC.

While enjoying my job and realizing the importance of this management assistant role,
I felt it was time to start following a different path in my career. With my passion for project management, process improvement and change management, I started a bachelor in Information Management. This resulted in three and a half quite intense years: a fulltime job, going to school two nights a week, studying during weekends and finally, also becoming a mother. A period during which my planning, communication and organization skills were trained even more.

In January 2015, it was time to make a career switch, say goodbye to my management assistant position and start as a Localization Project Manager (LPM) within the Medtronic Translations department.

As an LPM, I managed technical literature translation projects from start to end for various Medtronic business units/therapy groups, like Cardiac Rhythm & Heart Failure (CHRF), Cardiovascular (CV), Restorative Therapies Group (RTG) and Diabetes. In this role, elements such as planning, resource assignment, cost estimation and budget management are the drivers for a successful project completion.

Medtronic Translations supports more than 34 languages and that means that there are many people involved in a single translation project. An example: In a translation project requiring medical device Instructions for Use (IFU) in 26 languages, over 80 persons can easily be involved: 1 LPM, 52 linguists (every language has 2 native speakers as linguists),
2 publishers and, if applicable, also 26 Subject Matter Experts (SME).

In February 2016, I accepted the position of LPM Account Manager for Cardiovascular (CV) and mainly partnered with the CV Technical Communication and Packaging & Labeling organization. This was followed by my promotion to Localization Program Manager CVG in October 2016. I now oversee the overall portfolio for both CRHF and CV for technical literature, software and packaging & labeling translations from a planning, finance and quality point of view. I partner with multiple international stakeholders in managing comprehensive and global translation programs. Apart from the great Medtronic partnerships, I also have the pleasure of working with a great team of passionate LPMs, who are the experts in the actual execution of the translation projects.

With my special interest in operational excellence and being exposed to more strategic and process-related perspectives, I had the opportunity to also follow the Lean Sigma path, in parallel to my career switch and development steps. This resulting in my Lean Sigma Black Belt certification in October 2018. Next to being a Localization Program Manager, this also gives me the opportunity to be involved in various continuous improvement initiatives.

Most challenging in my current role

Translation is one of the last steps in the development process prior to product launch, which means that there is a constant focus on a fast turnaround time. When developing a device, the translation aspect is not always taken into account from the start. This could lead to engineering challenges and time pressure at a later stage in the process. For example, the translation localization needs of the right-to-left Arabic and Hebrew languages or the special character languages such as Cyrillic, Japanese or Chinese, obviously require a different development approach. Therefore, it is important to ensure that Medtronic Translations – this is me for the CVG portfolio – is included in the respective core teams as early as possible to share its input during the development phase. And also partner with the different stakeholders to determine the best translation approach in terms of timing and costs for all the different program parts: software, technical literature and the packaging & labeling, as these are all interdependent.

What I like most in my current job

Similar to the management assistant role, as a program manager you are also the central hub. I make sure to take a helicopter view of all the different aspects. I really enjoy this diversity and interaction with many different stakeholders and layers in the organization. It is great to bring all the pieces together, and with that, support Medtronic in providing global healthcare access to our patients.

What I like about working for Medtronic

There are many aspects which I like about working at Medtronic. Some of them are:

  • the diversity: being able to work and partner with people with different backgrounds and cultures;
  • the development opportunities: the encouragement which I received from management during every development step that I took, and am still about to take;
  • the focus on work-life balance: I can combine a successful career with my personal life;
  • the dedication and passion of every single colleague, which ultimately supports our mission;
  • the continuous focus on process improvement.

As the Medtronic Translations department, we play a crucial role in providing global healthcare access to our patients and as such, we help to improve the quality of life of as many patients as possible.

We contribute to the global access by providing localized documentation and software applications to patients in their native language. This helps patients completely understand the important information about their devices and to control their therapies.

What ‘Further, Together’ means to me

Working within all these different departments broadened my horizon and enabled me to understand the connections and interdependencies of all these activities within Medtronic.

Every single person, irrelevant of the department at which he/she is working, is crucial to the final outcome and in reaching our patients. By being aware of this, and continuously improving further within each department, with stakeholders and partners, we reach our goals …. Further, Together!

My most memorable experiences at Medtronic

Actually, this goes back to one of the first patient events which I attended. The annual patient event offers all Medtronic employees the opportunity to see and hear firsthand what the impact is of all our work is on a (wo)man’s life. It always makes me feel proud to see how we put our Medtronic Mission in motion by alleviating pain, restoring health and extending life. It is not just a job behind a desk for me in this case, but every single employee within Medtronic makes the difference.

During this particular patient event a normal looking gentleman entered the stage accompanied by his doctor and hospital nurse. From looking at the person you could not tell it was a patient with Parkinson’s disease. After a short introduction by his doctor about the exact treatment and the patient talking about the disease, and particularly the limitations he experienced which significantly reduced his quality of life, the nurse switched off the implanted device. Within seconds it was clear to all of us what this device means to this patient, and that this device really contributes to controlling his symptoms and to him enjoying all aspects of his life again. This once again confirmed that what we all do every day, does make a difference …

I hope to inspire you with my story and I would like to encourage you to take full ownership and responsibility of your own career… be the one in the driver seat and start today.