Alex Lee graduated from the University of the West of England (UWE), having studied Robotics. He recognised the growing demand from businesses for data science skills and had enjoyed the coding module on his course so decided to apply for the Fast Track Data/AI Graduate Programme.
He started the Programme in January 2022 which offered a unique opportunity to study for a Post Graduate Diploma in Data and AI alongside a paid work experience placement.
Alex told us: “we studied a variety of topics from Machine Learning to Time Series which I was then able to apply to my role as a Data Analyst with Admiral.
The Programme started with a boot camp which was an intense kick start to learning. We were given a crash course in understanding the coding languages and some statistics knowledge that meant we could hit the ground running from day one of our placement.
On beginning our placements we got to know our teams and were introduced to the data they use each day and what our workplace project would be.
I learned so much over the next few months on topics such as Deep learning and Text analysis, while also learning new advanced techniques for models which would help in my Data and AI final report.”
Alex was offered a permanent position with Admiral following his placement so has now been working as a Data Analyst for 10 months.
“My work is, unsurprisingly, a lot to do with data, mostly displaying it in dashboards for managers and shareholders to view.
These dashboards assist in business decisions that lead to the success of the business or help with ensuring that models are performing correctly. There are lots of opportunities to work on different projects such as model production or inhouse coding functions that help make the department more efficient.
I have also taken on the responsibilities of running the Data Science Meeting which involves all the teams across the business that involve data science, coming together to discuss different projects that they are working on.” Alex said.
The Programme is designed to give graduates exposure to real-world, business challenges and to get involved with projects that will make a real difference to their host company. Alex tells us about an exciting piece of work he’s been involved in since joining Admiral.
“I have been working on a model builder project that is going to be used to check for model degradation. All models degrade over time this can be because of changes in behaviour from customers or features in the model not being as predictive as they once were.
This model builder will make a challenger model against the live model and see if the live model has degraded to a point that a simple challenger model can outperform it.
It’s really exciting to be working in an expanding industry which continues to become more prevalent in our everyday lives.”
Admiral prides itself on its flexible and inclusive culture and this is something that attracted Alex initially and that he feels he’s benefited from.
“A typical week for me is very fluid as it depends on what I am working on at the time or what has the current priority. Typically we have fixed meetings during the week but we can join these remotely if we choose to. The only official team day we have is a Wednesday in which we are required to be in the office this allows for us to have in-person team meetings, otherwise other days are optional as to whether you want to come into the office or not.
I have loved meeting lots of like-minded people and when I look at how far I’ve come since the start of the Programme I feel really proud. The improvement in my technical knowledge has been very rewarding, there were times when studying and working simultaneously was a challenge but the improvement in my technical knowledge and the skills I’ve learnt in work are all worth it.”