Role Insight: Performance and Quality Analyst - by Kendall Wills

Hi! I’m Kendall, and I study Business and Management at the University of Sussex. I work as a Performance and Quality Analyst (Data Analyst) for Online Advertising Operations. Our team provides Operations for the Display component of Microsoft Advertising,  the products of which are the adverts you see on Hotmail, MSN and Skype etc.

Kendall Wills 2My role as a Data Analyst primarily involves the use of Excelto present our data, and then delving into this to find trends and identify any significant changes, in terms of cost, errors and time worked, etc. This enables my team to discover where improvements can be made, or if there are certain trends to been seen and how we can utilise these. I really enjoy this role as it enables me to make an active contribution to improve the operations of my team, and then also be involved in implementing these improvements and changes.

Alongside my job role, Microsoft encourage you to be involved in other projects. I am part of two teams; UK Youth Fundraising and Get On. Within these teams I have organised a Bake-Off, at which the UK General Manager of Microsoft was one of the judges, and I’ve also presented to a room full of 250 students about their futures and options after GCSE’s.

If someone had told me a year ago, when I was sat where you are pondering over my future career, that I would have destroyed Emeli Sande’s song, (rewriting the lyrics into a version about Bing with a full-on video), built a Go Kart and raced in it against fellow interns, built a water raft and sailed it on some smelly, dirty, swamp-like, lake on this, and spent two days in the New Forest volunteering and participating in team building exercises, I would never have believed them! To think that I have done all of this and I am only 6 months gulp into an internship here at Microsoft feels even weirder, and this doesn’t even cover half of what I have gained being here. Trust me it is worth hard work, stress and nerves!

Aside from the social side of things, the technical skills Microsoft equip you with are invaluable for your future career. Every day I engage with team members overseas and work with them, which has helped to improve my communication skills and confidence. Never did I think I would be able to forge relationships and have a discussion with someone I’ve only met over conference calling facilities without constant awkward silences! I also came to Microsoft having only ever used my laptop to write and research essays and do the occasional PowerPoint, but within two months I gained a Microsoft Master certification which involved taking 6 exams in Office 365 applications, which are all free of charge.

My advice to anyone looking to do a year’s placement would be:

–Think about what you want to get out of doing a placement and show this. Microsoft invest in people and will ensure you get there providing you can show your interest and passion. I didn’t have Excel skills but I got here based on my willingness to learn, so don’t worry if you don’t completely match the job description.

–Try to enjoy the process and be yourself – assessors are looking to see if you’ll fit into their team, so it’s vital that you’re you.

–And finally, everyone here is a normal person like you and I so don’t be daunted by applying to such a big company – and be confident :)

Thank you for reading and good luck!

Kendall Wills 3

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