By Mikiyas Tsegaye, Ph.D.
As a recent hire at Veracity Forecasting and Analysis, I’d like to report on my on-boarding experience, which job candidates often don’t factor in to their decision making after receiving an offer. Although few things are as exciting as getting started at a new company, the on-boarding experience can vary widely depending on the size, mission, and culture of every company. A good experience obviously sets us up to transition smoothly into new work. Asking about a company’s on-boarding process is a good question for candidates to pose during a final interview.
I found my on-boarding experience at Veracity to be well suited to my own style of learning. I come from academia and also have a background in early-stage tech company development. Veracity’s environment is what one might find in a graduate school research lab (which is no coincidence, considering the number of people with graduate degrees in the Veracity family). As an incoming senior data scientist, I was encouraged to jump right in to the technical material, but to approach it in my own style. For those of us with research experience in highly specialized fields, I found this freedom to survey a new field and systematically learn the necessary bits of knowledge to be quite valuable.
Veracity provides Decision Support services to large enterprises. We work on complex operational problems using analytics, operations research, and modeling & simulation. The company is staffed with talented people, and everyone is encouraged to be curious. In terms of on-boarding, though, this is not to suggest that everyone is left to their own devices all the time. Some people learn better through a more structured approach, and I’ve seen that everyone here is very open and willing to spend a great deal of time discussing and helping each other. When we are deciding about accepting a job offer, understanding a company’s expectations for learning the ropes is valuable information to have.
Follow-up questions about on-boarding can be along the lines of “how are unclear issues resolved?” “Will I have access to managers and senior team members for open and frequent technical discussions?” “How would you describe the company’s culture in terms of sharing expertise among different staff levels?”
I’ve seen very quickly that Veracity is not the sort of place where one clocks in and out with minimal daily engagement. Company culture focuses on discussion and collaboration, which ultimately makes is easy for new data scientists and analysts to get started. During on-boarding I was encouraged to get my hands dirty and work through all our analyses and codes early on. The amount of new information to absorb was huge, but Veracity’s on-boarding approach enabled me to feel incredibly satisfied afterwards. And that of course is the magic of new beginnings that makes them so exciting.