2012 BIS graduate Paul Deane is today a Business Intelligence team in EMC in Cork. He advises anyone with an interest in business and technology to consider BIS as a college course choice.
Why did you do BIS?
I did the course because I felt that it offered the right mix from a business and technology perspective. In school, I did a few business-related subjects for the Leaving Cert, and I had an interest in technology too, so BIS ticked the boxes for me.
What was the best thing you got out of the course?
The course helped me to develop a lot of different skills. In addition to improving my business and IT capabilities, I was able to build up softer skills, especially when collaborating and communicating with others as part of group assignments.
Where did you go on work placement in 3rd year?
I stayed in Cork for my 3rd year work placement. I worked in the IT department of a multi-national organisation, called FMC. This company operated in the chemical industry, with a number of divisions. It was a good 6 months and it allowed me to put the concepts I had learned over the first 3 years of the course into practice.
Where are you now?
Since graduating in 2012, I have been working with a Business Intelligence team in EMC. We create reporting solutions for sales and operations personnel and help internal users to work with the various tools. There has been an on-going transformation project taking place during my time at the company, and we have been involved in this effort also from a reporting point-of-view.
How did you get this job?
Around the time that I was graduating, there were a number of positions available, as the team I joined was just being put together. These roles were being advertised in UCC before the final exams, so it was nice to know that there was a job after finishing.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve been given relating to your career?
In terms of advice, being told to “invest in your-self” is one that I liked. In an ever-changing world, it’s important to do this and to keep updating your skill-set. To that end, I have done a number of internal training programmes here in EMC and, more recently, have been studying for a Diploma in Data Business, which is run by the IMI/UCC. This has been an enjoyable course, with modules focused around the information supply chain of organisations.
What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced, and how did you overcome it?
Learning about how the sales organisation operates was a big challenge for me when I first joined EMC – it is an incredibly complex, multi-faceted structure. Before being able to build BI solutions, I had to get my head around how the different groups functioned and connected to one another. I overcame this challenge mainly through on-the-job learning and by talking to more experienced colleagues who had spent several years working in the sales and reporting space.
Looking back now, is there anything that you would have done differently?
If there was anything that I could, or should, have done differently, it would probably have been to take more enjoyment out of the college times. It can get quite busy and hectic around project submission deadlines and exam dates, and sometimes you can get bogged down in that too much and don’t fully appreciate the overall college experience.
If you had one piece of advice to offer someone considering doing BIS, what would it be?
I would advise anyone with an interest in business and technology to definitely consider BIS. It’s a very diverse course that covers interesting subjects across the spectrum, and people with skills in these areas are highly sought after in today’s job market. The programme has developed a strong reputation, and you’ll have opportunities to network with people in the industry, particularly during the 3rd year work placement.