NAME: Valerie Villegas-Hoag
TITLE: Senior Business Analyst
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN WITH IMP AND WHERE WERE YOU PRIOR TO JOINING?
I have been at IMP for 2 years (as of time of interview). I was hired as a Business Analyst and was promoted after about a year and a half to Senior Business Analyst. My first job (prior to IMP) was at a very small start-up that grew exponentially over the period of a couple years. It was a unique opportunity that allowed me to experience the full life-cycle of the company during my time there.
WHERE DID YOU GO TO COLLEGE AND WHAT DID YOU STUDY?
My degree is in Finance from Bentley University (with a Minor in Marketing).
WHICH TYPES OF PROJECTS HAVE YOU BEEN PART OF AT IMP?
To date I’ve been on 3 projects. The first one was a front office project. I worked as part of IMP’s 5-person project team for a large global asset management firm on an Order Management System (OMS) upgrade. We had exposure to 3 different offices/branches. I interacted with the Portfolio Managers (PMs) and Traders on a semi-regular basis. Junior people outside of the front office rarely have the opportunity to work along-side PMs and Traders.
My second project was conducting an audit for a smaller sized asset manager based in Canada — this was not a “typical” IMP project. I worked with one other IMP team member. I split my team between Boston and Canada. The primary purpose of our engagement was to perform a manual audit on permission setup in their OMS. Daily interactions ranged from director level personnel to the C suite.
My most recent project is for a large asset manager where they are consolidating 3 different instances of their OMS into one. We are working with the client’s entire Compliance team. This project has many “moving parts” and it’s been interesting to see how all of the pieces connect. My project manager has done a great job of helping me to run and lead better meetings, as well as constructing and formatting client deliverables to be more concise.
ADVICE FOR APPLICANTS?
Be confident in what you know, but don’t exaggerate. You may feel slightly intimated, as I think often times people hear “consultant” and they think “expert”. I’ve learned that by no means is anyone an expert at everything. Are you better versed in some areas than others? Yes, but no one expects you to be an expert at everything. I raised these as areas of concern when I joined – “I don’t know the systems yet, will I be expected to run a project? How do I run an effective meeting?” My managers ensured me that I’d have someone more senior to help guide me along the way. They have provided this guidance on all of my projects.
WHY CONSULTING AND WHY DID YOU JOIN IMP?
I think consulting can be a demanding and high pressure job – but I have been exposed to so many different clients and different systems in the investment management technology space. I feel I am gaining a unique skill-set that will give me a competitive advantage as I progress in my career.
FUNNY IMP STORY
Learning the layout of your client site can always be a bit interesting. My first day on a new project I locked myself in a stairwell and needed a colleague to come rescue me.