My Rakuten Experience: Hikaru
Hikaru is a data consultant.
As a Data Consultant, I have a bridging role to ensure that Rakuten EC Consultants (ECCs) and other members on the business-side are able to make the most of the big data obtained from tech services delivered from the Rakuten ecosystem as a whole. For example, we compile and analyze highly valuable data for about 500 ECCs and 55,000 merchants that help visualize customer insights from Rakuten Ichiba.
At Rakuten, we use BI (business intelligence) tools for data analysis. I work on an internal educational program for learning about BI, and as of June 2022, I became responsible for the Data Education project, which focuses on building a mechanism for the development of internal data-handling staff.
In the company, we hold three-month courses to gain a practical understanding of BI tools. At first, my predecessors set out to make the training very productive by operating it as a self-sustaining apprenticeship system. The trainers were teachers and the trainee an apprentice, and eventually the apprentice would become a teacher to pass on their skills to a new apprentice.
We proposed to build the apprenticeship system as a sustainable education system, and what we came up with was the Data Education project. Separate from the course, a “trainers’ group” brings together members from different parts of the business with different perspectives to share high-level information and knowledge. It is exciting, and I learn a lot from it. For me, it serves as a big source of motivation.
The appeal of working at Rakuten
A major appeal of working at Rakuten is that it operates on a global, broad-based and open field, and it is a large company with the mentality of a startup. When it comes to matters important to the company, we have the resources to bring in collaborators from around the world to help us.
When the Data Education program went live across the whole company, a lot of applications came from overseas. Right now, Data Education has over 230 members from seven different countries and linguistic backgrounds. Our classes are taught in Japanese and English, yet there are around 100 foreign nationals among our students. We even have a graduate from the Singapore office. We have a lot of synergies that only arise because of the diversity of the company, and I look forward to seeing what kinds of chemical reactions are created in future.
What points do you find most interesting or enjoyable about your role?
Personally, it is the moments where I work in close proximity with executives. Rakuten is unique in that regardless of your position or experience, it is such an even playing field here that you can work together even with some of the most senior people.
What are your future goals?
I want to develop my team-building skills and put this to use through the Data Education training and organization I am leading. I would also like to think more deeply about the optimal working environment for employee well-being, while maximizing the current working environment we presently have.
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