June 2016: My new job in Manchester!

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It is almost two weeks since the exams finished. It seems a really long time ago, even though it was really just a few days ago when I was still submerged by notes, books and lecture slides. The second semester ran fast. The second half of the academic year required a greater commitment in terms of working hours spent on both individual and group assignments. However, I felt I could approach it much more smoothly compared to the first semester, probably because I really trained myself to a new methodology of studying. Also, I put in practice what I learned from my past experience especially by maximising my study efforts during lecture time so that the final time dedicated to revision was very efficient and productive.

Probably my enthusiastic approach to studying in the second semester was also due to my excitement for a new adventure waiting for me after exams: an internship at Convergys where I will develop a business project as my final dissertation. It is not usual to get the opportunity to work on a real business case in a company for the final dissertation; hence, I would like to thank Dr Julia Handl, my supervisor, for giving me such an incredible chance.

I will be placed at the company located in Altrincham, just few miles out of Manchester, for approximately three months. The firm is well known for supporting direct marketing campaigns for the largest companies in the world and it can be proud of talented data analysts producing valuable insights on those campaigns.

My project is focused on developing a propensity model using data analytics’ tools and techniques to identify customers who are most likely to subscribe to a home insurance policy after a direct marketing campaign. The project is really challenging and it is extremely exciting, especially for the complexity and variety of approaches that can be considered to cope with a number of variables affecting the final results.

The first meeting with Convergys’ analysts and my supervisor was electrifying: everyone looked very committed to developing the best approach possible to the design of accurate forecasting models and the company was looking for a fresh perspective brought by students and the latest advancement in research by the Decision Science Department of Alliance Manchester Business School.

It is already a week since I started my new job. My new colleagues are sociable, friendly and they really want me to learn as much as I can from this experience. They have already stressed the necessity to work by objectives and to follow a week-by-week plan keeping into account all aspects and possible issues arising from the project. The environment is really stimulating and I will try to do my best in order to achieve the ambitious objectives of this business project.

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Manuela Detomaso at Convergys, Manchester 17/06/2016

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