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Pascal Tobak: "I am well placed to see how tools develop"

Pascal Tobak

Pascal Tobak is the Infocentre manager for Inria's IT Services Department. His role combines management and IT in the special technological context of Inria. 

What is the nature of your work at Inria?

It's about management information systems and tools related to the management of the establishment: pay, staff, budget, accounts, orders, invoices and assignments. I lead a team that is responsible for the decision-making system used to monitor and analyse the establishment's management data, by providing management charts for the functional departments or project-teams. Our work involves a mixture of technical work and project management and we monitor social developments. Human contact is very important.

What was your background prior to your current position?

With a baccalaureate under my belt, I did some vacation placements at SEDIS (the Scientific Information Publishing and Distribution Service) at Inria while studying computer science at the CNAM. This allowed me to work as a computer specialist and programmer. I developed a few applications and then put in place electronic publishing tools, while simultaneously going through the selection process for a full-time job at Inria. I then joined the departments responsible for management information systems at national level, which is where I still work.

What advice would you give to someone thinking of embarking upon the same career as you?

The MIAGE course (Computer science methods applied to business management) is particularly valuable for those thinking of joining the profession. Good knowledge of databases, and perhaps also statistics, but above all management tools and decision-making methods, is essential. You have to be curious about technology. From this point of view, we are lucky at Inria to be working in an environment that is at the cutting edge of new developments. What is interesting about my job is how tools and technologies evolve. There is no room for monotony.

Keywords: Information systems