An interview with our Director of Analytics & Automation
When did you join Sopra Steria and what were you doing before?
I joined Sopra Steria in 2019 but I've been working with data for over 20 years. I initially studied maths and statistics at university and went into a management role in manufacturing straight after with a company that sponsored me for my degree.
Over the years, I’ve gained experience in reporting, statistical techniques, building models, and designing and building systems to digitalise data. I've covered data governance and data management, experiencing the full lifecycle of data.
What do you enjoy about your role?
I am a Practice Director but also deliver directly to our customers, so that gives me a lot of variety. I do a lot of juggling which is fine because that's what my personality likes. And if somebody has that kind of personality where they want to do more, we have lots of opportunities internally that people can be involved in. We do lunch and learns, and we actively encourage people to look for propositions that they can then bring back into Sopra Steria. There is a lot of opportunity for people to do their client work, which is your day-to-day, but to also engage really actively with Sopra Steria.
How is the Data function at Sopra Steria structured?
Our function is really growing! It's an exciting time. The practice I'm responsible for is split into three different pillars - we have Descriptive Analytics, Predictive Analytics and Prescriptive Analytics. The Descriptive area focuses on data analytics and visualisation, whereas the other two are more data science. Predictive Analytics is about being able to build machine learning models and Prescriptive is very much more about scenario analysis and understanding.
We understand what we expect people to have to be classed as a beginner and intermediary or advanced within each of those three pillars. And we've got quite comprehensive training that can move people across those levels and from one pillar to the next as well. There are quite a lot of opportunities for promotion.
What's it like to work within these areas?
Each pillar has an open group chat where they can offer support and help each other. We also have communities based on skills and specialisms e.g. Data Visualisation, Python etc., so people can reach out and get support in those communities.
We invest heavily into our people and we provide a lot of support. I spend quite a lot of time with new starters and we have an aligned management structure. We look for where people will benefit from mentoring and put that in place.
I also always like to make sure that everybody is aware that I've got an 'open-door policy', so anybody whatsoever can come to me at any point and ask me anything. They do use it. I think that's really important because I want everybody, no matter whether they've just started their career or whether they're very experienced... I want them to know that they can be heard and I want them to know that they have a voice within our communities.
What do you think makes Sopra Steria different to our competitors?
Working for Sopra Steria is like being in a family. Everyone supports each other so that we can achieve success for our customers.
There are also lots of opportunities to work across sector and on projects you might not usually get involved in. By embracing and making the most out of those opportunities, you might be able to bring in more work.
Would you recommend working for Sopra Steria to others?
My job title is Data Architect but there are many branches of it. The area I specialise in is Data Warehousing.
How long have you been at Sopra Steria and what made you join? I joined early part of 2022. When I interviewed here, I had a feeling that people here in this company are very honest, intelligent and make decisions based on the interests of the business, rather than personal interest or personal benefit.
What kind of projects are you currently involved in? My current project is for a client in the financial services sector.
What do you think makes Sopra Steria different from other companies in the industry? Management is very important. I really love when I work in a company where the managers are really nice people. The other thing is about the job itself. My job is a challenging job. I have to learn new things every day. I have to work very hard, but this is something that I really like. Here, it's a place where we are committed to excellence.
What kind of career development opportunities are being given to you? It's not that important to me if I’m in a management role or not, as long as I’m in the place I can make the most impact. I want to do my job in the best way in any position that I am in.
Sopra Steria is recognised as a Great Place to Work®, what do you personally think makes it so great? I think that one of the most important things that makes it a great place to work is that I see a lovely team committed to working hard and improving the business which motivates me to do the same. When the business does well and makes profits, it's gonna be rewarding for the employees.
Eirikur Solution Architect
What’s your role at Sopra Steria? I’m a Solution Architect in the Data space, so I focus on Data Architecture and everything under the Data umbrella.
How long have you been at Sopra Steria and what made you join? I joined in 2022. I did my research and I liked the ethics of the company and thought it was absolutely perfect for me.
What kind of projects are you currently involved in? With new versions of technology coming out several times a year, I write to change environment, make things more dynamic and automate processes where possible.
What do you think makes Sopra Steria different from other companies in the industry? What really makes a difference are the core principles, like empathy and respect. It harmonises up with my own values. The other thing is that the challenges being faced are right up my alley and a lot of my job is my hobby.
What kind of career development opportunities are being given to you? What stands out to me the most is the availability of training. I used to spend thousands of pounds a year of my own money but now those options are available to me without cost. I also don’t have to take time off work to do the training. When I have any free time in the work schedule, I can use it for training. In terms of progression opportunities, I’m always open to challenges and I’m certain because of the transparency of communication within the company that if any such opportunity arises, everyone is treated equally.
Sopra Steria is recognised as a Great Place to Work®, what do you personally think makes it so great? Since being here, I haven’t found a single negative thing.
Liam Consulting Manager
What’s your role at Sopra Steria? My official job title is Consulting Manager within the Private Sector of the business, currently acting as a Lead Data Engineer.
How long have you been at Sopra Steria and what made you join? I joined towards the end of 2022 because of the opportunities to develop my career, my skills and because the salary was good as well. That always helps!
What kind of projects are you currently involved in? One of the projects I’m involved in is data migration, where I migrate a Management System’s data from an old to a new system.
What do you think makes Sopra Steria different from other companies in the industry? My history is pretty much 100% in financial services, so this has been a chance for me to expand my experience into different sectors, as Sopra Steria has a lot of clients. There’s a lot of free training resources available and we’re encouraged to better ourselves. We’re very much trusted as well, to do what we believe is best and to work independently.
What kind of career development opportunities are being given to you? When I joined the business, I made it clear where I wanted my career to go. I would like to move into the Architecture side of the business and that’s something everyone that I’ve spoken to is happy to enable. There are lots of different opportunities because of the size of the business.
Sopra Steria is recognised as a Great Place to Work®, what do you personally think makes it so great? What makes Sopra Steria different is that they genuinely do what they say they will do. Sopra Steria goes beyond your typical corporate responsibility framework. One example is providing the opportunity to donate to a charity of our choice upon joining. This is something that I’ve never seen before in any other company I’ve worked for.