SaritaMBA school: Smeal School of Business, Pennsylvania State University
Undergraduate degree: Engineering, University of Mumbai
Office: San Diego
EY business group and specialty: Advisory — Performance Improvement — Supply Chain
Time with EY: Two years
The transition from business school to Ernst & Young was certainly interesting. While it was easy in some aspects, such as adapting to the client service delivery processes and methodology at Ernst & Young, it was challenging to adapt to the fast pace at which we get things done. I was surprised to learn just how much of the courses and subject matter that I learnt at business school was relevant and had “real-world” applications. My experience at Ernst & Young, however, has also made me realize that there is no substitute for on-the-job learning, and I’ve had some terrific mentors and peers who have helped me in my transition, and provided me with a great support network.
The MBA classes which have helped me the most since joining Ernst & Young have been the supply chain and data analytic courses that were offered at Penn State. I have been able to directly apply the learning from those courses to the projects that I have worked on. Besides supply chain courses, the classes that I attended on presentation and other “soft skills” have proved to be invaluable especially while structuring and presenting client deliverables. Other courses on leadership and strategy also helped me perform in the Ernst & Young landscape.
I have been very fortunate to have been assigned to some terrific projects at Ernst & Young. I’ve been involved in a project which involved managing the transition efforts of globalizing key procurement spend categories, as well as a project which involved gathering procurement business requirements for an ERP solution project, and assessing the viability of implementing an ERP solution globally. Both of these projects helped me grow professionally, as I had the opportunity to interact and learn from professionals who are among the best in the industry. I have also had the opportunity to lead work streams in projects, and voice my ideas in an open and supportive environment, which has helped in my learning and development. Diversity is truly valued at Ernst & Young, and working with people from varied backgrounds and countries has certainly helped shaped my work ethics, understanding and thinking.
Traveling to different places is definitely something which interests me, which probably explains why I chose to be a consultant! The domestic and international opportunities that I’ve had this past year on account of client work have helped me pursue my traveling interests in countries in Asia and Europe. I also like to cook and try out new recipes, and though I am not at home during most of the week, I try to make up for it during the weekend.
The culture of the company that I worked for was very important while accepting a job offer as I needed to identify with it. The culture and values at Ernst & Young resonate with my personal values. The job profile was also a very good fit, as I had a chance to apply my technical and analytical skills as an engineer, as well as the business skills that I had acquired during my MBA degree at Penn State. Ernst & Young is a company that I’ve respected and admired for a while, and it meant a great deal to have access to the professional learning opportunities, and the network of Ernst & Young professionals during the course of my day-to-day job. My first year at Ernst & Young has not only lived up to, but has exceeded, my expectations!
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