Presented By
O’Reilly + Cloudera
Make Data Work
29 April–2 May 2019
London, UK
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Unlocking insights in AI by building a feature store

Willem Pienaar (GOJEK), Zhi Ling Chen (GOJEK)
14:0514:45 Thursday, 2 May 2019
Data Engineering and Architecture
Location: Capital Suite 8/9
Average rating: ****.
(4.80, 5 ratings)

Who is this presentation for?

  • CTOs, CIOs, data scientists, data engineers, ML engineers, and data analysts



Prerequisite knowledge

  • A basic understanding of machine learning and database concepts

What you'll learn

  • Explore problems GOJEK is solving with machine learning
  • Dive into the impact that features have in the success of these projects
  • Discover the challenges faced when creating, storing, standardizing, and managing features
  • Learn about GOJEK's unified platform built to solve many of these problems


GOJEK, Indonesia’s first billion-dollar startup, has seen an explosive growth in both users and data over the past three years. Today, it uses big data-powered machine learning to inform decision making in its ride-hailing, lifestyle, logistics, food delivery, and payment products, from selecting the right driver to dispatch to dynamically setting prices to serving food recommendations to forecasting real-world events. Hundreds of millions of orders per month, across 18 products, are all driven by machine learning.

Features are at the heart of what makes these machine learning systems effective. However, many challenges still exist in the feature lifecycle. Developing features from big data is often an engineering heavy task, with challenges in both the scaling of data processes and the serving of features in production systems. Teams also face challenges in enabling discovery, reducing duplication, improving understanding, and providing standardization of features throughout organizations.

Willem Pienaar and Zhiling Chen explain the need for features at organizations like GOJEK and discuss the challenges faced in creating, managing, and serving them in production. They describe how in partnership with Google, they designed and built a feature store called Feast to address these challenges and explore their motivations, the lessons they learned along the way, and the impact the feature store had on GOJEK. Finally, they demonstrate how democratizing the process of creating, sharing, and managing features dramatically reduces time to market and leads to key insights.

Photo of Willem Pienaar

Willem Pienaar


Willem Pienaar leads the data science platform team at GOJEK, working on the GOJEK ML platform, which supports a wide variety of models and handles over 100 million orders every month. His main focus areas are building data and ML platforms, allowing organizations to scale machine learning and drive decision making. In a previous life, Willem founded and sold a networking startup and was a software engineer in industrial control systems.

Photo of Zhi Ling Chen

Zhi Ling Chen


Zhiling Chen is a machine learning engineer at GOJEK, one of the fastest growing startups in Asia. She and her colleagues work on scaling machine learning and driving impact throughout the organization. Her focus is on improving the speed at which data scientists iterate, the accuracy and performance of their models, the scalability of the systems they build, and the impact they deliver.