Changing the face of data analytics

Ebru Yildirimli Kafkas, Project Manager at Siemens Advanta Consulting
Project story: Ebru Yildirimli Kafkas

How consultants successfully transform businesses with data

In the agile environment of data analytics, a special type of expert is required. Ebru, a Project Manager at Siemens Advanta Consulting, effortlessly combines the creative bold thinking and computer science expertise necessary to unlock the digital future. This pioneer is not only transforming businesses; she’s also changing the face of data analytics.

When asked what she does, Ebru doesn’t waste words: “I help businesses to predict the future by using data,” she says. “Using analytic modeling, my team turns data into insights that can revolutionize how businesses are run,” she adds. As a Project Manager at Siemens Advanta Consulting, Ebru works at the intersection of technology, analytics and business. Her job is to solve real world business challenges with high tangible impact. In short, she transforms companies.


“Advanced analytics is upending industries and disrupting how business operate. Our job is to help customers create and capitalize on new opportunities,” Ebru says. Traditional consulting approaches aren’t necessary the best. “There’s no standard way of doing the work we do. It’s an incredibly fast-paced environment and we’re always trying out new things. We have to in order to keep ahead.”


Customers don’t always know what to expect when they hire consultants with this expertise. “Our clients are not always 100 percent convinced of what we can achieve – at least initially. Sometimes there’s a lot of skepticism. I experienced that recently on a project with a new customer. But once they saw our results, they were blown away and immediately booked us for the next project!” Ebru says.

I help businesses to predict the future by using data.
Ebru Yildirimli Kafkas


Learning never stops 


Advanced data analytics is a relatively new field and change is happening fast. The work calls for people who combine seemingly contradictory skills and qualifications. You have to be analytic and creative, insightful and rigorously thorough, and conversant in a number of areas: business, technology, quantitative analysis as well as strategy. You have to be comfortable challenging assumptions and trying out unconventional methods. 


“We’re a bunch of rule breakers, who work really well collaboratively,” Ebru says with a laugh. “Perhaps it’s the nature of the work we do, but we’re not at all traditional. We tend to shake things up. We look at business problems from a different angle,” she adds. 


Importantly, in the test-and-learn culture of advanced analytics you have to be able to deal with things not going to plan. Setbacks and failure are part of parcel of work in agile environments. “In my field, hypothesis don’t always bring the results you expect. But that information is priceless. You have to use it to move forward, to help the customer,” Ebru explains.  


When it comes to risk taking, learning mostly happens best outside of university. “I learnt an incredible amount about creativity and risk taking while working for Siemens Advanta Consulting out of the New York office. Most evenings I’d head out with colleagues to watch a live open-mic comedy show. It was a fantastic time and so enriching. I really enjoyed the creative problem solving on display,” she says. Having jokes fall flat is part and parcel of life on the stand-up circuit and bombing happens on every set. The same is true in advanced analytics as well: failure is part of the package when you brave new frontiers.

Proud trailblazer  


A hallmark of data analytics at Siemens Advanta Consulting is diversity. At last count, our team members spoke 17 languages and draw on a plethora of different backgrounds. Each feels right at home looking outside the box for new solutions to help customers unlock their digital future. Ebru, for instance, studied information technology in Istanbul and Munich. 


While data analytics and tech are still largely male dominated, Ebru is confident more and more women will become data analysts in the future. “It’s really important for female students and those entering the workplace to see women succeed in data science areas. They have to see that advancement is possible,” she says. Her role is clear: “As a Project Manager I’m now a role model for the next generation.” 


A hallmark of our data analytics team at Siemens Advanta Consulting is diversity. At last count, our team members spoke 17 languages and draw on a plethora of different backgrounds.
Ebru Yildirimli Kafkas
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