Data Gumbo Talent Spotlight: Maria Onufrow
With her tactical and inspired leadership, Maria Onufrow steps into the talent spotlight as she takes the mantle in her new role as Chief Product Officer at Data Gumbo.
Maria's strong dedication to building a product that is customer-focused and her creative problem-solving skills makes her a driving force. She has a deep understanding of digital ledger technology and is able to effectively communicate the product vision internally and externally.
With excellent organizational skills, Maria's team works as smoothly and accurately as a Swiss clock.
Before assuming the role of Chief Product Officer, Maria held the position of VP, Product Delivery at Data Gumbo where she headed up the software development and product implementation teams.
Welcome to the talent spotlight, Maria!
What do you love most about working in product management?
It’s always fun to be building software that does something new. Data Gumbo's distributed ledger technology is truly different from the industry-specific transaction software I’ve worked with in the past because here we solve problems at the network level—meaning that our network addresses transactional issues between customers and their vendors or suppliers. We aren’t just software for companies to run in isolation, but a shared platform between companies and their counterparties.
Our smart contract network is at an exciting time in its build cycle where we’re building new features and solving problems for new customer segments, while also adding reusable tools for customers to utilize themselves. Since we are cloud-native, we get to use state-of-the-art tools, which keeps our software developers engaged. For those of us who have supported legacy systems before, it’s refreshing to be able to solve old problems in a new way and not be burdened by previous versions.
Are you drawn to any particular phase of product life cycles more than others? And why?
I love starting a new project and really understanding customer pain points so we can make software that fixes their problem. I also find the testing phase fun because it's a true opportunity to learn so much from the results. I love it when I see the light bulb come on in someone’s head when they understand the full potential of what smart contracts can accomplish.
What other tech trends do you find exciting?
I think RPA (Robotic Process Automation) could add a lot of value. Most companies I’ve worked with spend a lot of time dealing with legacy systems—so much so that they don’t even notice it anymore; it’s just how they do business.
For instance, many accountants spend eight hours a week or more generating invoices because the way their systems are set up requires manual exporting. Data Gumbo can fix that, and until then, RPA could save them a lot of grief.
What interests you most about the Data Gumbo customers?
To date, all of our customers have at least one person—or a small group of people—who are forward-looking and can really envision the future. The current industry processes have a lot of room for improvement, but not everyone has the energy to do something about it.
With Data Gumbo’s customers, it’s lovely to work with visionaries and champions who desire digital transformation within their companies and are working to make it happen. Several of our customers are already a year or more into their smart contract implementations and are positioning themselves to be way ahead of their competitors.
Our customers are already reaping the benefits of smart contracts and distributed ledger technology—working to streamline their processes now in support of quicker payments and lower costs.
Where do you think the company will be in five years?
We’ve come so far in the last three years, and our foundation is stronger than ever. Backed by a purpose-built blockchain with configurable smart contracts that address many common business problems, we’re starting to see new customers come in that can leverage our prebuilt solutions to accelerate implementation timelines.
We are supporting international customers, fostering strategic partnerships with industry groups, and are starting to scale up within the energy sector and across other asset-heavy industries. The next five years are going to be explosive growth for Data Gumbo!
Connect with Maria on LinkedIn: Maria Onufrow | LinkedIn
Edited August 18, 2022