Suncorp

Vasu Arora on his journey from an intern to Junior Software Engineer

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Tell us a little about your internship, your duties and how you heard about it?

I interned for one of Melbourne’s leading Indian information technology providers Tech Mahindra from June 2018 to January 2019.

I worked on a project with their client Suncorp, Australia’s largest financial services brand. At Suncorp, I was a part of the Chief Data & Transformation Office and worked on the transition of Suncorp’s IT services contract from six external partners to Tech Mahindra. I helped develop Application Understanding Documents (AUD’s) for the new application support being taken over by Tech Mahindra to identify the functions performed by those applications in a step by step sequential order in the banking and insurance industry. I also created an SQL parsing tool to develop an end-to-end system for visual and exploratory analysis and facilitated knowledge transfer sessions to the technical team.

I heard about the Australia India Institute (Aii) from an acquaintance who was working with Tech Mahindra – a role she secured after interning with the company through the Victoria India Internship Program administered by the Aii. I was highly motivated by her career achievements with the support of Aii. Thereafter, I attended Drop in Chai meetups organised by Aii. I approached Marianna for career guidance and applied for the Victoria India Internship Program.

When you talk to people about your internship what’s the first thing you tell them?

When I talk to people, the first thing I tell them is how important a role an internship can play in your career. My career took shape with the help of the experience and learning opportunities I got through my internship at Tech Mahindra. Working at the client office helped me develop relationships with my colleagues. The current full time IT role of a Junior Software Engineer was a direct outcome of the technical & interpersonal skills that I gained. I was offered the role after I graduated in December 2018,

What was the work environment like at your internship?

Tech Mahindra has a diverse work culture. I had the opportunity to meet people from different teams which gave me a good understanding of the organisation’s processes and accelerated my learning curve. My team members are very friendly and motivating. They ensured I was comfortable and guided me with technicalities of the project and in no time, I bonded very well with them.

What surprised you about the internship?

I was surprised with the flexibility offered at the internship by the Aii and Tech Mahindra in terms of my reporting. I could decide the number of days I wanted to work. I was also able to extend my internship from three months to six months – a decision supported by both my manager at Tech Mahindra and the Aii.

What advise would you give to future applicants?

I applied for a few internships and did not receive a positive response. Thereafter, I started attending networking events, which gave me a better understanding of the IT industry and what recruiting managers were looking for. My advice for future applicants would be to build their professional network, develop their industry-specific and interpersonal skills. Aii offers a strong platform for professional engagement through Victoria India Internship Program. They also organise a monthly drop in chai networking sessions where I got the opportunity to meet Marianna and discuss my future career goals. You can also register and benefit from the various other events run by Aii.

What skills did you gain from the internship?

This internship was my first professional experience and introduced me to the corporate world. It helped me develop my technical skills but most importantly improved my interpersonal skills and understanding of corporate culture.

I was responsible for facilitating workshops for Tech Mahindra technical teams & Suncorp subject matter experts to help them understand & validate the enterprise architecture and the configuration of the existing IT systems which they will be supporting. This experience helped me improve people management, delegation & organisational skills.

Currently, I am focused on my holistic development and delivering my best. In the next 3 years, I want to become one of the most crucial resources for my organisation. I want to build effective and profiting statistical models for the company to grow and would soon want to change my role to a data scientist so that I can devote all my hours to build AI and Deep Machine Learning experiences for the customers to enhance their productivity & for the executives to make knowledgeable decisions.