Tom de Ruijter

Position title: Data Scientist
Office location: Wageningen (Netherlands)

What I do: MeteoGroup is a data driven company, so I’m responsible for improving the weather forecast with machine learning algorithms.

My key tasks are: The field of data science is very new, so my most important task is explaining to my colleagues how a data driven approach can boost efficiency and identifying new and interesting ways our data sources can help increase revenue. Talking to new and existing clients about how weather data can help in their problem solving and thinking of ways we can implement these applications is all in a day’s work. 

A typical Friday:

Morning: I get out of bed at 07:00, have a light breakfast and hop into my car to pick up a colleague for the company carpool. In office we first get coffee – very important – and prepare for the rest of the day. We have a stand-up meeting with the team at 10:00, and the rest of the morning I use to polish/finish off any work from earlier in the week before the weekend. 

Afternoon: After lunch I perform pair-programming with another colleague, and we use the final hours of the day to work on other interesting side projects. My carpool buddy and I are currently developing an algorithm to teach the computer how to recognize trees and visible sky from photos. Why is that relevant? Knowing the amount of foliage and visible sky helps produce more accurate road condition forecasts.

Evening:  We finish the day at 18:30. I then head home to Utrecht for food and drinks with friends. I find it difficult to completely forget about work at the weekend, so planning something fun really helps.


If I could give you one piece of advice, it would be to have fun, take pride in your work and go home on time. You get back the time you rest in twofold the next day.