What do I do at work?
Updated: Dec 4, 2019
Did an interview at work, thought I should post it here 🙂
What’s your role?
I head the Data & Artificial Intelligence practice at Intergen. I lead a national team of creative problem-solvers who keep me on my toes to find business challenges to solve with Data Analytics, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, IoT, & the Cloud. Sometimes these business challenges are easy to find, they lie in plain sight, but sometimes they take way longer to uncover.
What digital/customer experience trends/changes are you seeing in the market?
If you had asked me this question three or four years ago, I would have said – NZ organisations are not thinking enough about adopting a data-driven culture. Things are changing now. Data is making its way into the boardroom. Organizational leaders are realizing the true potential of data, treating it as a currency and a strategic asset that can transform decisions that impact human lives. The usual suspects like Gartner, Forrester, HBR, McKinsey etc. do a good job of capturing market trends, but the ones I’m really enjoying are:
The blend of Design, Data, Digital – the fact that companies are treating data as a valuable resource for transforming customer and user experience. When people think of Psychology, Design Thinking, Human Centered Design, they also think of Data in the same breath.
The importance of Big Data & Thick Data to transform user experience. You should read how thick data changed Netflix.
How storytelling with data is becoming powerful because data does not have to be boring. The importance of context, visualization, using the power of storytelling to help your message resonate with your audience, and most importantly asking the right questions to answer uncover questions that haven’t yet been asked.
And of course, the fact that amongst all the exciting stuff, organisations are not losing focus of the important stuff – Data Governance, Data Privacy, Data Security, Data Quality etc.
Tell us about a client transformation journey you’ve worked on and how it has transformed the customer experience.
It has to be First Gas! This engagement was all about empowering their employees with the right digital tools and access to intelligent decision making so they could get their job done – be it in the office or at the pipes. The fact that business executives were heavily involved in all our workshops was very exciting to me. Ask me about it in detail, I can tell you more.
Where do you start?
I would say the best way to start would be to define a business trategy on what the organisation plans to achieve and then start small. A few points that I can suggest:
Bring data to the boardroom: Organisations must understand that Data Analytics is a strategic business imperative, and not a pure IT play. A business leader who understands the business and how data analytics can be pulled together to solve complex business problems can play a significant role.
Lay a solid foundation for data analytics and insights driven culture: Review your KPQs (Key Performance Questions), define KPIs, and then establish what data needs to be collected and acquired to support your strategy. Integrate data technology into existing systems and business models.
Start small, implement a proof of concept: Start with a small proof of concept solution to support processes that have a major impact on your balance sheet. It is not about technology but a business process or issue driven solution that will guarantee success and help with business adoption.
Create an analytical workforce: Encourage your workforce to be innovative and more analytical in their decision making. Apply analytics to measure overall people performance, operational performance, customer performance and selling performance.
As a customer what’s your favorite brand experience and why?
I can think of many, but the first prize for this month goes to GHD (Good Hair Day) Flat Iron! It has transformed the art of hair straightening and taken it to a whole new level. Did you know it has predictive analytics built into it? It is intelligent enough to know my hair type and adapts the heat temperature based on each strand’s thickness and length. True customer intimacy in action.
Isn’t that how every customer wants to be treated? Interestingly, all the above is possible with data.
Recommended reading resource/source of inspiration?
If there was one, I’d name it. Inspiration is everywhere.
My inspiration comes from meeting people, having conversations, asking questions, getting challenged & challenging them and keeping an open mind. I also enjoy listening to podcasts, watching movies & documentaries, attending conferences (not just focused on Data & AI, something broader because that’s where business problems lie), reading books outside of my subject area etc. And then, I use my internal data warehouse i.e. my brain to process all of it and join the dots.
Number one tip for getting started?
Let’s have a coffee so I can suggest that you need to start with an enterprise-wide Data & AI Strategy 🙂