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LIAM HARPER

Aberdeen Asset Management

Business Intelligence Analyst

School Leaver

Why do you enjoy your job?

In my position I combine business knowledge and technical expertise to design, develop and deliver business intelligence solutions in line with business requirements. That means simplifying complex data and presenting it in a compelling way that engages the business and helps improve decision-making. Step one involves the integration/modification of a data source (database) into our existing business intelligence platform (a process that requires both data modelling and programming knowledge) and step two being the process of presenting this integrated data to the user in the form of insightful business intelligence dashboards and reports.

This position is suited to me because it challenges my problem-solving skills and requires out-of-the-box thinking. When something goes wrong (for example in the form of a software fault or where data is suddenly incorrectly returned) both of these aspects are put to the test as a quick yet tactical solution must be deployed. Because of this (and as strange as it sounds), I enjoy my role most when things go wrong.

What is the most challenging thing about your job?

The most challenging aspect of my job would be the steep learning curve I encountered when I started. Within a short period of time I had to become familiar with the concepts of data modelling and database systems. This required me to do additional self-study through reading outside work.

However, from my perspective, being thrown into the role was a positive. This is because I found the process of learning data analytics through my hands-on experience to be very exciting and it really changed my perspective on how something as simple as clicking a button (for example a Read More button in an article on a news website) can result in a large amount of data being processed through an intricate data model (using the previous example, the click of the Read More button would be processed through a data model to determine which news articles have the most engagement from readers).

How did you get into your job?

I entered this position as a 6th year school leaver. The interview process was quick and within a few days I was told I had the job. At the point where I was being faced with the crossroad of enrolling in University or entering full-time employment I decided to defer my university place for a year in order to see whether this role and the idea of not progressing with university was suited to me.

How would you sum up your Investment20/20 experience?

I would sum up my Investment20/20 experience as being a valuable opportunity to gain industry insight and skills, as well as a chance to establish myself in the technological sector of the asset management industry.

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