- Name: Hannah Bache
- Role: Business Consultant
- University: The University of Manchester
- Degree: International Management
What project are you currently working on?
I am currently working on a large public sector account up in Warwick. It is a 5 year project and the team is growing from 30 members in January to nearly 300 in August. This project is focused on the implementation of a Workforce Management Solution across England and Wales.
Describe your current role
On this large public sector account, I am the team lead for one of our functional areas. This involves running daily meetings with the client, where we present our daily progress, what we aim to achieve before tomorrow, as well as any issues/ blockers. This role also involves planning and forecasting for the team of onshore and offshore developers and functional Subject Matter Experts that sit within the team.
What tasks are you performing?
As my project is fairly large, I have had the opportunity to rotate and experience various roles within the same project. As Change Manager, I owned the creation of our stakeholder analysis piece. This involved working directly with the client to get an understanding of their strategic and user level stakeholder landscape. Once they were identified, we analysed and categorised them according to their levels of support for and influence over the implementation of our solution. This then formed the basis of our communications and marketing strategy.
What has been your biggest challenge in this role?
My biggest challenge on this role has probably been being thrown in at the deep end as a functional lead right at the beginning. One great thing I have experienced at IBM so far is how much responsibility graduates get! I had direct interaction with the client, running workshops, facilitating meetings, and contributing to deliverable documentations.
How does this role compare to what you thought you would be doing when you joined IBM?
I had never actually heard of some of the software I would be managing before so I didn't know what it would involve at all! I had 2 weeks training in Chicago which was amazing and went out a few days early so that I could enjoy a weekend there. I was very open minded about what I might be doing when I joined IBM. What attracted me to the organisation was the knowledge that there are hundreds of different opportunities to get involved in, in terms of roles and projects. In that sense I have gained a glimpse into the different options available to me, and I look forward to experiencing even more! I have picked up much more technical knowledge just from working within this environment, listening and partaking in conversations, and of course asking lots of questions!
What is your travel pattern on this role?
The project is based up in Warwick and my base location is Southbank, so I get the train up on Monday mornings, and back down on Thursday evenings!
What are you working hours on this role?
My working hours vary according to work demands. When my team had strategy deliverables looming, we had a few late nights with Dominos being ordered to the office to get us through! But generally we leave on Thursdays.
How often are you in an IBM office vs Home vs Client site?
I have spent the past seven months on a project up in Warwick, which was my first real experience of a project requiring travel. Generally, working arrangements on Friday are at the discretion of the individual. I probably spend 3 out of 4 Fridays working from home, but will go in to IBM South Bank on Fridays if I have any meetings, training or giveback there.
What is the best thing about this role / project?
The best thing about this project is the level of responsibility that we are given as graduates. We are trusted to get on with the work, to meet with the client and get things done. Generally, across IBM, the best thing is the people. Everyone I have met has been amazing and extremely helpful. Never be afraid to reach out to someone within IBM; I guarantee they will be willing to help!
Tell us one thing you didn't know before becoming a consultant that you do now.
I wanted to do consultancy so that I could get exposure to a wide variety of roles, responsibilities, clients and industries, and this has definitely been the right choice in order for me to gain that. I underestimated just how quickly we were expected and able to get stuck in to our new roles - it's a really exciting and dynamic job to have!