Gabriel has always had a passion for maths, having finishing maths, further maths and computer science for A levels, he went to Cardiff University to study a degree in maths and left four years later with a master’s in mathematics.
He said: “Although I had a passion for maths, my second degree choice would have been computer science. Data analytics/science now allows me to combine the best of both worlds and utilise my skills learnt in both subjects to establish a career that I enjoy.”
Nearing the end of his degree, Gabe wasn’t sure exactly what career path he wanted to take. The opportunities that his mathematics degree offered him were very broad.
“I knew I got a buzz out of coding, investigating and solving problems, so after researching a few possibilities, a career in data seemed ideal.
The Fast Track Data/AI offered the opportunity to not only learn a broad range of data science and AI skills through the university course but to be able to apply them to the real world on a work placement. This really appealed to me and so I decided to apply.”
Gabe joined the Programme in September 2022 and was placed with Principality Building Society.
“My first project was to analyse the probability of savings customers closing their accounts.
This comprised of data cleaning/pre-processing using SAS, performing statistical tests, forming initial insights/trends in PowerBI and creating a prediction model so that we can acquire the probability of a particular customer redeeming in the future. The project was really interesting and kept me busy.
I’m placed with four other graduates (Khoi, Sumi and Wiki) and have enjoyed working with them throughout the placement and has made it easier to get settled in at the company.”
In less than a year into his placement at Principality Building Society, Gabe has secured a permanent role as a Junior Customer Insight Analyst.
He told us:
“My main role focus is on providing stakeholders with concrete data and analysis that can inform and influence decisions. Analysis takes up about 60% of my workload with recent projects looking at the savings customer behaviour mentioned earlier and drawing insights from office bookings data for desks/meeting rooms.
30% is usually data requests for different areas of the business to carry out their day to day operations. The last 10% is ongoing monthly MI (management information) which is quite broad and relates to information about the activities of the business.
The work is very varied which makes it interesting. I feel like I have a lot of freedom to get on with a task by utilising the skills learnt from the placement and university. Having said that, there is also plenty of support, when I have questions, everyone is very happy to help.
The ability to work from home has been a positive for me; I find myself a lot more productive and less stressed and able to keep on top of my workload with ease.”
It’s been a busy 10 months of work and study, but the end is in sight for completing the PGdip.
“Once that’s done, I want to enjoy what I’ve achieved for a bit and take a breather before deciding what to do next. I am certain that I want to continue improving my skills and knowledge so when an opportunity to progress hopefully arises in Principality, I’m ready.”
For anyone thinking about applying for Graduate Programme Wales, Gabe’s advice is:
“Apply! I was lucky enough to find out about the programme from a conversation with a mate that was on the last cohort, and it was the best personal and career decision I’ve made.
If you have a passion for problem solving and want a career in data then go for it. I have enjoyed it thoroughly and anyone who is in a similar position would enjoy it also.”
Thanks Gabe and congratulations on securing a permanent role. We wish you the best of luck and look forward to following your career journey.