A smiling professional man in an open-neck light grey shirt.
Fergal Collins, CEO, ACIA. Image: Luke Maxwell

What skills do you need to be at the forefront of data analytics?

5 Dec 2018

Siliconrepublic.com found out more about the Aon Centre for Innovation and Analytics and what it takes to work there.

Data analytics has become the core of almost any discussion around digital transformation and the future of work.

Being able to effectively analyse and use data will separate the most agile companies from the ones that are left behind. Therefore, careers in data analytics are experiencing a huge amount of growth, with plenty of organisations focusing on their own analytics arm.

For example, Aon is a provider of risk, retirement and health solutions. However, within Aon lies the Aon Centre for Innovation and Analytics (ACIA). The centre’s CEO, Fergal Collins, said the aim is to become a centre of excellence for innovation and analytics.

“We’re a group of 240 people across Dublin, Singapore and Kraków who are dedicated to ingesting new forms of data, harnessing that data, and then creating really strong analytical outputs that help solve problems for our clients and colleagues.”

Due to the growing and sophisticated nature of ACIA, Collins said the centre has roles available that relate to its data engineering capabilities. “We’re looking for engineers who have experience in the likes of Cloudera, StreamSets, Python and Spark.”

He added that ACIA also values those with expertise in the area of data analysis, with good commercial insurance understanding and experience.

“We need different types of skillsets that allow us to bring that analytics to life,” said Collins. “So, we would be looking for roles in the area of UI/UX, design thinking, business analysis [and] product management.”

So, want to work at the forefront of data analytics at ACIA? Collins advised potential candidates to get to know the company better. “We have a lot of material on the internet about what we do,” he said.

“While you will get a lot of training, both structured and on the job, you will also get a lot of freedom. With that freedom comes responsibility as well to be proactive,” he said. “We don’t have a blueprint or a recipe book for everything, and we value that proactivity from our new joiners.”

Jenny Darmody
By Jenny Darmody

Jenny Darmody became the editor of Silicon Republic in 2023, having worked as the deputy editor since February 2020. When she’s not writing about the science and tech industry, she’s writing short stories and attempting novels. She continuously buys more books than she can read in a lifetime and pretty stationery is her kryptonite. She also believes seagulls to be the root of all evil and her baking is the stuff of legends.

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