Women in Tech: Nikki Hallgrimsdottir
Hi Nikki, I am so excited to find out more about you as well as Algomus, so please, take it away!
Nikki Hallgrimsdottir here. I’m a University of Texas alumna with a BBA in International Business, currently serving as the Vice President of Growth at Algomus, an Enterprise AI company offering hosted business intelligence solutions that deliver domain-specific insights from data by leveraging the power of AI and predictive analytics.
I’ve been featured as a speaker at several AI and technology conferences addressing the topics of Predictive and Prescriptive Analytics, Machine Learning, Simulation Technology and Innovation. When I’m not traveling to speak or work with customers, I split my time between the SF Bay Area and Algomus HQ in Metro Detroit.
What were you doing before you decided to take on the role as VP at Algomus?
I had been a Sales Engineer for about 10 years in fields ranging from Machine Vision and Factory Automation Robotics to Physics Simulation software used for Electronics Design.
Getting involved in Tech is still a hot topic for women, what was your push into the industry?
My Dad is and was one of my biggest role models growing up and although he has an Engineering Degree, he got into Sales and Marketing and Entrepreneurship from there. I saw him growing and running a successful company with a tech background, so I saw the value of solving technical problems for customers. Problem solving and helping people has always been something I like to do and to do it in a field as exciting and complex as emerging technology really appealed to me.
Although I ended up getting a Business degree I was really drawn to applying it to something technical rather than finance or other industries I saw my classmates gravitating towards, which seemed boring to me in comparison. My dad always told me I could do whatever I wanted, so I never felt like it was not a good idea for me to get into the industry. It was really more of a shock to me when I joined the workforce how much emphasis can be put on a person’s gender in the job.
What has been your greatest accomplishment?
I am really proud to have mastered 4 very different and complex technologies in a relatively short time, to a point where I can really add value to organizations as prestigious as some of my customers have been. I have been fortunate enough to work with really amazing and smart people that I have been able to learn from. My biggest concrete and quantifiable accomplishment would have to be growing a strategic account in Silicon Valley to over $1M in my first full year on a job, helping a prestigious team design for challenges on mobile products I (and many of us) use every day.
What educational route did you take to get to where you are now?
I hold a BBA in International Business with a minor in Spanish from the University of Texas. After working for over a decade engineering automation solutions for manufacturers in diverse industries from Silicon Valley to Napa Valley, I’ve developed an intuitive understanding of how AI and Data enabled technology can be successfully applied to enhance processes from field sales to supply chain operations.
Tell me about your experience working in a male dominated industry?
Especially in the early years it was tough in a lot of ways. I was typically the only one or one of a few women in the tech sales role and would sometimes be greeted with comments like “where’s your engineer?” when I’d show up to deliver technical demos or assess a solution at a customer site. Other times you have to deal with unwanted attention like being hit on, etc just because you happen to be the only female around. I once had to fire a customer for continually being inappropriate with me to a point where I didn’t feel comfortable going there by myself, but by and large for me it has been a positive and empowering experience. I like being underestimated and coming out ahead of people’s expectations by learning fast.
What advice would you give to young female entrepreneurs getting ready to enter the tech industry?
Be infinitely curious; always learning, connecting ideas, and thinking about the bigger picture. When you feel underestimated, use that as fuel to empower yourself and exceed expectations and squash assumptions.
Overview of how Algomus/Algo works:
Algomus is a passionate team of [self-proclaimed] nerds who have built the world’s first AI-powered Virtual Business Analyst. Affectionately referred to as “Algo”, the virtual analyst brings domain-specific and actionable data insights to his human colleagues and saves them time by automating tedious tasks.
We are an advanced analytics software house focused on Enterprise AI and Workflow Automation. We live for solving big problems. We believe in collaborative intelligence where people and machines working together leverage each other’s core strengths and make great outcomes happen.
Algomus grows the collaborative intelligence of enterprises, with man and machine working hand in hand to deliver exponential outcomes. AI + BI = CI
Algo is the world’s first AI enabled Virtual Business Analyst. Algo wrangles Big Data to help people get answers to their questions quickly and easily. Algo learns to take over tedious tasks to give people more time to be strategic and creative.
Our industry optimized Machine Learning algorithms are helping Global 2000 companies discover opportunities and take full advantage of their data.
Business Intelligence requires cleaning and presenting data in an intuitive format, but visualizations aren’t meaningful without people using their intuition and domain knowledge to interpret the data and act on it.
Algo makes analytics easy with chat, application specific dashboards, custom insights, ad-hoc reports, and more.
We see a future where Machine and Human Intelligence work together to produce an outcome greater than the sum of its parts. Algo learns from his customers, colleagues, and metadata to become more useful and intelligent in his domain over time.
The Algo platform fosters collaboration through easy insights sharing, storyboarding, and reporting. True Business Intelligence comes from having easy and accurate access to the right data at your fingertips at any time, without delays that cause interruptions in decision making.
Algo combines the powerful visualization benefits of interactive visual dashboards with ad-hoc Q&A providing both narrative and visualization.
Algo’s goal is to empower business users to become data-driven decision makers, without having to learn the technical ins and outs of data analytics and data science.