What's your job about?
My goal is to work with clients on a 6 month basis to implement data structures, train their employees and build data visualisations to drive pro-active decision making.
Prior to this, we undergo a 4 month internal training program where we receive training to become experts in the two pieces of software, whilst enhancing our soft-skills to become data analysts. We not just receive pure software training, but about half our time is spend working for clients.
Clients come in with an particular issue, question or massive amount of data which we turn over into meaningful insights and visualisation within a week. Such projects help you prepare for the day to day consulting after the training period, whilst building up relationships with clients for the future.
We work with a large variety of clients, from financial to real estate, from airlines to councils, engineering companies to retailers. This makes our work incredibly fun and requires us to be versatile whilst having to adapt to new situations constantly
What's your background?
I grew up in the centre of the Netherlands, a small but brilliant country, apart from the terrible weather.
I moved to study Chemistry for my undergraduate and masters in a town called Leiden, where I also taught Mathematics to high school students throughout my degrees.
I was then lucky enough to move to Melbourne to undertake my doctoral studies at Monash University in collaboration with the University of Warwick in the UK, on the development of chemotherapy.
The translation and presentation of complex data sets for everyone to understand stood at the centre of these studies, which is one of the things I enjoy most.
A graduate fair first introduced me to the concept of the data school, after which I decided to go to a meet & greet to find out more.
Being exposed to Alteryx and Tableau after I graduated opened up a whole new world of streamlined data processing, which was often missing throughout my research.
After this, applying for a spot was a no-brainer; learning from global experts all with an incredible variety of backgrounds, exposure to a large range of industries, building up your network and being paid to do so!
Starting at the data school in February 2018 has been an amazing new challenge in order to continue to fast-track my experience in big data science.
These last 4 months of training have been an amazing rollercoaster and I cannot wait to start my first 6 month placement at Solar Turbines in San Diego, USA.
Could someone with a different background do your job?
Definitely, the only necessity is a keen eye for data and the will to learn. Our cohort of trainees consisted of business, science, marketing backgrounds as well as a professional singer!
What's the coolest thing about your job?
If I had to narrow it down to two things it would be 1) the variety of work and 2) the impressed looks on clients faces when you deliver your work.
Possible the later is what drives me most. Sometimes the project can be tough, but still being able to turn around amazing work within a short amount of time is the most satisfying thing.
What are the limitations of your job?
Sticking to your working hours to finish your work is key, the time set to get the job done should fall within the weekly working hours allowing you to have a social life next to work as it should be!
Always willing to learn more, however, is key to being a successful data analyst. Therefore, using your own time to continue and progress throughout the two years should be something you’re willing to do. For the most of us, this comes naturally and I enjoy doing this a few hours a week.
3 pieces of advice for yourself when you were a student...