Day in the Life of a Young Consultant | Haaris Sohoye

Technology Consultant

IBM Consulting

After completing my Physics degree at Loughborough University, I was not entirely sure on what I wanted to do moving forward. I knew I wanted to be around technology and science, but I didn’t want to go into research. During my studies, however, I used IBM’s work in Quantum Computing for one of my papers and this led me to investigate what other opportunities there are at the company, which is where I learnt about IBM Consulting.

For me, the IBM Consulting graduate scheme was somewhere that would keep me close to technology but also allow me to learn and develop in different sectors, roles, and industries which would give me a good foundation and understanding of what I would like to grow a career into in the future.

My experience in consulting so far has taught me a lot… not just in terms of skills but actually framing what I now see for myself in the future. A lot of my expectations and ambitions in university have changed; What I thought I saw myself doing back then is very different to now and this is because I have hands on experience and the ability to move around quite fluidly.

On my current project, the client I am working with is a large, global automotive company. Their offices are just outside London and for me I am close enough to drive which means I am at client site two days a week, at IBM once a week and work from home the other two days. For me this hybrid set up is ideal, I get to meet with the client regularly, also stay in touch with people internally at IBM, and get to work from home on Fridays.

I was also able to fly out to Madrid for the ‘Go-Live’ in the Spanish Market. I was the Data Specialist that was there to answer any questions/ concerns that the users (dealers) had when it came to this new software we had developed.

My role with the client is technical lead for Leads Generation Analytics. It’s a very well-balanced mix of technical skill development, and client interaction/management. I work with five different European markets; Germany, Spain, Italy, France, and the UK, which means I am responsible for the automation production for all these locations. My GCSE French and Spanish come in handy now and then (although I’m not sure the client appreciate the butchered pronunciations), but this responsibility has noticeably developed my Client Management skills as I am constantly required to provide updates, gather requirements, and implement changes dependant on stakeholder needs.

The aim of the project is to provide car dealers an easy-to-use application in order for them to offer current customers new vehicles at a discounted price. The scripts that I manage and develop use Python and Alteryx, which is a data pipeline automation tool. Essentially, we link customer information with marketing programmes (and a lot of other data sources), perform some analysis on them and offer a discounted vehicle at a highly specialised rate to an individual customer.

Coming into the project I had never used Alteryx before but with my analytics background I was trusted to learn fast. This was of course quite challenging but was one of the main reasons why I joined; to pick up and deploy new skills. Now I am the in-house specialist when it comes to Alteryx on the entire account both IBM and Client side. As a new joiner, this was quite an achievement for me.

All in all, whether you are unsure about the future, or you are very clear on what you want, consulting is a great way to get your hands dirty with experience, pick up new skills quickly, and make a real impact at the start of your career. I have thoroughly enjoyed so far and would recommend it to any young graduate looking to build a solid foundation for their future career!