Goh is a Data Scientist in the Global Data Supervisory Department.
I am in the Global Data Supervisory Department, which collaborates with multiple organizations within the Rakuten Group. I am responsible for promoting the use of data throughout the Group while working closely with each department. I also propose agendas and give presentations for data strategy meetings which are attended by all executive officers ranked at manager level or above, as well as those responsible for data from all over the world. I supervise the direction of the organization to ensure that the activities of our data scientists around the world improve usability and lead to profit.
After graduating from university, I started working as a software engineer for a foreign-affiliated IT vendor. Though I initially sought out a position in the technology field, I felt I was not contributing to society and the economy in the way I would like, so I decided to switch my career to focus on the business side of things and went back to school for an MBA.
After getting my MBA, I was assigned to a general trading company and engaged in business development in the field of Big Data. There, I was able to build my career in both fields – technology and business – and in 2014, I joined Rakuten as a data scientist. With only 10 members at that time, the Data Supervisory Department was very small, but it has now grown to over 200 members. Since the scale of the department expanded so greatly, it has been renamed the Global Data Supervisory Department.
About 70% of our department members are foreign nationals. In addition to engineers who specialize in data, we also have members from the business side who have MBA degrees. Regardless of nationality, we are a hybrid department where Big Data technology research and business planning are integrated and we rely on the diversity of our members for their different backgrounds and perspectives.
We also have data scientists in India, China, the US and Europe; therefore, we operate globally 24 hours a day. It is a stimulating environment to work in because we can seek out the use of data while taking into account the regulations, cultures and markets around the world.
My mission for my job has remained consistent. It is to utilize Big Data and advanced technology to increase the business value of the company and improve the economy and society as a whole. In the process of achieving this mission, although I do not particularly care about climbing the corporate ladder for my own sake, I would consider climbing to a higher position if I were unable to solve a particular problem without doing so.
My personal goal is to solve problems that companies around the world are facing in using Big Data. I am determined to do this, so I am flexible with regard to expanding my career while pursuing the company’s mission.
How many projects do you handle per year?
I have about 10 projects that I take the initiative in handling on a long-term basis.
Are you involved in any of Rakuten’s club activities?
I am the vice president of Rakuten’s Kendo club, and participate actively when we have company-sponsored tournaments. I hold a ranking of sixth dan (grade).
What do you do on your days off?
I practice kendo at my home university. I enjoy surfing in summer and skiing in winter. I also like hiking and running.
*The content and affiliation presented in this article are accurate as of the time of the interview.
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