If you're reading this post, I'm sure you're probably wondering, "What is it like to work after completing your education?” “What kind of people will I be working with? Are they social?” “Is it only about working, deadlines or are there also fun activities?" All these can be important questions and hopefully, I'll be able to answer them with somewhat refined details, but, yes. They are social, and yes, there are lots of fun events.
How did I end up with Keyrus?
After graduating in Economics, I had absolutely no idea what to do next. Going to lectures, writing essays, studying for exams, working on my thesis, I did it all and then my time as a student came to an end. No more studying for me! I wanted to work, make myself useful. I knew with certainty, but then the following questions popped up; where do I want to work? In which sector? What do I really like doing? Or what would I love doing for my entire career? So many questions and not many answers. So I decided to start with an internship because like they say, you need experience to get experience!
During my studies, my main focus was finance but in the end I was hesitating whether this was something for me, so I wanted to try something else. Through a friend I found an internship in Online Marketing & CRM at Sarenza, a French E-commerce company based in Paris. What a great decision! After 6 months of working and living in Paris, I learned a lot on a personal and professional level. Most importantly, I got to know what I loved to do and what I didn’t. Being part of the international commerce team, I became aware of the very important role data plays in the value chain of a company, certainly in this digital era. I really enjoyed monitoring and analysing the behaviour of the Flemish customers and prospects, to gain valuable insights in order to optimize the online customer journey of Sarenza in order to increase revenue.
That’s how I decided that I wanted to contribute to this aspect of business, by learning more about data analysis, customer intelligence & digital performance. This was then the basis to search for my first job. I definitely wanted to work for a company that truly valued data, where data is in the core of their business and combine it with the digital experience. Surprise, surprise, Keyrus was a perfect matchJ!
To all graduates who, just like me, are lost after graduation: an internship is my best advice :)!!
Working life at Keyrus
When I started @ Keyrus, a whole new world opened up for me: full of data scientists, BI consultants,… I didn’t have an IT or data-background and suddenly I was in the middle of it, hearing my colleagues talk about Tableau, QlikView/Sense, AI, … I admit, in the beginning I wasn’t sure what they were talking about and how I would fit in, but at the same time I wanted to jump into this new world. After getting to know everyone a bit more, I discovered I was not the only one with a non-data background. All my colleagues had a connection with data but in various different ways. It was making me feel à l’aise and step by step I discovered my personal career path was moving towards data driven marketing & customer intelligence
My first months were a combination of training, studying in order to get certifications and working on several projects. Before I started, I received a training plan which was adapted to my profile and needs. So I followed a training concerning business analysis, project management and consulting skills. The training plan also included time foreseen for me to get certified in Salesforce. After some studying I got the certifications (Salesforce Administrator, Salesforce Platform App builder & Salesforce Email Marketing Specialist). Along the road I discovered other areas where I could use some extra training and after a discussion with my manager and HR, they booked this trainings for me. But more on this laterJ. Besides training and studying I’ve also worked on several projects. I still remember my first project where I joined my manager at a client where Keyrus guided them in their choice of a DMP platform. All of a sudden I joined meetings, in French (which is not my mother tongue) with 10 different people from that company on a topic that was new for me. I admit it wasn’t easy in the beginning and a bit overwhelming. From that day on, I realized that you don’t become an expert in 1 day. It takes effort, time and practice, but I was so excited to start learning because I found the subject to be really interesting. This first project was a digital-data driven project, so I couldn’t have been happier. This was exactly what I was looking for!
The cool thing about being a consultant at Keyrus is the variety of projects you will be working on: different companies, different people, different technologies,...In every project you have things you already know and other things that are new to you and thus require you to gain knowledge. Keyrus offered me the possibility to follow trainings/e-learnings and study in order to get certifications. Above that, I also used the experience and knowledge from my friendly colleagues, who were always happy to help. Thanks guys! This resulted in a continuous learning process, where I could develop myself non-stop on a professional level, shaping my own career path. Does this sound too good to be true? Well I can tell you it’s trueJ. I’ll prove it to you with my personal example.
I was working on a project where we designed marketing outbound campaigns from the client, in a customer intelligence tool from SAS. I worked together with people from SAS and the client company (Business Intelligence consultant, Database Administrator). During this project I came into contact with databases, data modelling, SQL codes etc. At that moment I had very little knowledge about these topics, but I quickly discovered these elements are fundamental and they come back in a lot of projects. Even when I looked at future projects, I noticed that a profound knowledge would become very valuable for me. My manager and HR agreed and so I followed a course and an e-learning to fill the gap. For the online SQL training I immediately received useful tips from my colleagues about which e-learning is the best and they gave me their notes about the most common functionalities. If I had questions I just needed to ask! J
And last but not least, depending on your client of course, Keyrus works with flexible hours, meaning you can vary your arrival and/or departure time depending on the traffic or just to have a bit more sleep after a heavy dinner.
Social life at Keyrus
You must be wondering, do they foresee fun activities with colleagues, or is it just about working? Well the answer is YES. Keyrus even has a FUN team, dedicated to organizing different events during the entire year but all initiatives are welcome.
My first Keyrus event was the ‘end of the year diner’. I had already accepted the invite before I even met my future colleagues, a bit scary but what a fun icebreaker getting to know everyone on the dancefloor ;-). The second event was the Keyrus 4 Life after work party. Food and drinks in a winter market atmosphere and at the same time raising money for a couple of charities. And yes, I also got on the dancefloor ;). To celebrate International Women's Day we had a delicious (and free) breakfast, and also had a bowling evening for all junior consultants who recently started with Keyrus. I even followed a self-defence class for women, given by a colleague/MMA expert! As you can see: work hard, play hard does have its meaning!
So, what did I learn or what advice can I give? If you are not sure what you want to do, definitely look for an internship. If you know what you want to do, look around, talk to friends and select the companies you want to work for. Try to find a company that shares your values and has some a proven track record in the areas you are interested in. Ask to speak to other recent graduates at your chosen company, to get be able to get a view from someone who was recently in a similar situation you to you!
And of course, if you want to work in an environment where data is the heart of the business, constantly learning new things surrounded by friendly people and fun events, then Keyrus is most definitely the place for you!