During my studies at the Hult International Business School (Boston, MA) I participated in various exciting consulting projects focusing on emerging technologies and evolving business models. This experience drove me to apply to Deloitte at the end of my studies. During my first interview with Deloitte, a manager shared his experience working abroad with a client in advanced technologies. From his perspective, this experience was rewarding, it was challenging him and put him in a uniquely diverse environment. At that point, I thought to myself “given the variety of my study experience – and the appeal to work with international clients combined with new technologies, I would like to continue with this, but in an even more challenging environment!”
In my first month as a Business Analyst in Technology Consulting, I worked on my first agile project. Together with a Deloitte team and our client, we defined new processes, roles and requirements of a centralized system. Linking IT to business was always something that interested me and this was the perfect starting point.
After I rolled off my project, I received a call asking if I would like to be involved in a new Deloitte practice, called the High Tech Competence Center (HTTC). HTCC focuses on the High Tech ecosystem and the latest technology trends – in particular within the Netherlands. The goal is to enable parties, both private and public, to connect and create mutual value. (Read more about HTCC)
On one of the projects I am involved in, we are developing a platform to support a faster and more effective integration of refugees working closely with HTCC’s ecosystem and new technologies. I got the opportunity to fulfill the role of product owner, acting as a central communication point between the business and the technical implementation including supporting stakeholder communication, project management support, prioritization of focus areas, participation in technical discussions and much more!
In the project we work directly with several refugees. It is intriguing to see how the platform, even before the go-live, can have such a significant impact on individuals’ lives. Besides working directly with refugees we also actively involve the whole ecosystem i.a. corporations, NGOs and academic institutes. This gives the platform a unique perspective: It allows to lower barriers for refugees to access the job market, education and information to integrate. In addition, it enables research into forced migration.
Currently, we are working on the platform with quite a large team. Our team is very diverse, including team members ranging from cities like Damascus to of course Amsterdam, as well as creative and process-oriented individuals. Both the opportunity to work in such a diverse team and the challenging projects and environment makes working at Deloitte and HTCC extremely exciting and rewarding.
Lies de Smit
Lies de Smit studied International Business, specializing in change management, business processes and architecture at the Hult International Business School in Boston, MA. Since October 2015 she has been working at Deloitte Technology Consulting and has been an active member of the High Tech Competence Center of Deloitte.