INSAID’s Spotlight Series: Exclusive Interview with Sumeet Kumar

Sumeet Kumar

In INSAID’s Spotlight Series today, meet Sumeet Kumar, a student of the GCD Batch of 2022. Sumeet is a dynamic professional currently working as a Manager in the Wholesale Banking division of ICICI Bank.

His role primarily involves credit appraisal, risk management, and product recommendation for corporate clients. With a keen eye for detail and a strong analytical bent of mind, Sumeet ensures that all risks associated with a client’s business are identified and managed effectively.

Question 1: Which program and batch are you part of at INSAID and tell us more about your current work profile.

Sumeet: I belong to the GCD Batch of 2022 at INSAID. Currently, I work as a Manager at ICICI Bank in the Wholesale Banking division. My main responsibility is to perform credit appraisal for various corporate clients.

Additionally, I focus on understanding their business and recommending appropriate banking products to them. I also work towards closing disbursals while ensuring that all risks related to their business are identified and managed. Lastly, I engage in cross-selling and upselling activities to offer the best possible banking solutions to our clients.

Question 2: Walk us through your career journey & what got you interested in Data Science & Machine Learning.

Sumeet: So, as far as my career journey is concerned, I worked as a Systems Engineer in TCS from 2013 to 2016. During that time, I focused on the retail vertical of TCS and worked on Java and related technologies, covering everything from front end to back end. I was involved in around three to four project deliverables. After leaving TCS, I joined IIM Nagpur from 2016 to 2018, where I pursued a general management program with a domain focus on finance.

Following this, I joined an organization that operates in network logistics as a Business Operations Manager, where I worked on various programs to improve efficiency. This included defining process steps, identifying responsible parties, and controlling sub-problems in program delivery. I also managed cash flow, worked on digitalization programs, and led the All India team for various locations.

In December 2021, I joined Altisource Business Solutions Pvt. Ltd. as a Business Operations Manager for US BPO credit appraisals and processing of files for clients. We worked on processing home loans based on guidelines provided by US regulatory bodies to ensure no risks were involved.

My responsibilities included invoicing, dashboard development, financial reporting, and project management, such as automating the SLA adherence for the plan that the variables have to meet the recording.

In March 2023, I will be joining ICICI Bank as a Manager in Client Relationship.

Question 3: What all tools and packages in Data Science & Machine Learning have you mastered in your Data Science & AI program at INSAID so far?

Sumeet: So, in answer, the first thing that I learned was that data science is not just about working with data, it is about performing all kinds of cleaning and analysis on the data so that we can identify patterns and gain insights that are valuable for the business, such as increasing revenue or reducing costs or even venturing into a new business altogether.

Firstly, we learned how to use Python to clean and duplicate data, and also about various statistical measures used for prediction, classification, and clustering.

After that, we moved to data visualization where we learned about libraries like Matplotlib and Seaborn, and how to plot variables based on their type (continuous or discrete).

Next, we learned about Exploratory Data Analysis (EDA) to find correlations and combinations in the data, and suggest ways to improve business metrics.

Then we moved on to Machine Learning, where we learned about regression, logistic regression, and how to evaluate models.

Currently, we are in the intermediate stage of machine learning, where we are learning about Classification, ID3, and CART.

Question 4: What are some of initial challenges when you got started on your Data Science journey and how did you overcome it?

Sumeet: So, talking about the challenges, I would say that while I had studied about regression and some techniques in my MBA course, I wanted to know more deeply about how these concepts could be applied in today’s industry context.

Once I started learning, I discovered the process of Exploratory Data Analysis (EDA), which was new to me. In the process of learning about EDA, I had to learn a lot about Python.

Regarding Python, I would say that I learned by doing, making mistakes, googling, and going through lectures provided by the Faculty of INSAID. Learning requires perseverance and dedication to go through the grind and learn from mistakes to become an expert.

I also worked on several EDA projects and small case studies in every session, which helped me learn a lot. Finally, I would say that tools like HackerRank can also be helpful in the learning process.

Question 5: Who is your favorite faculty at INSAID and what did you learn from him the most?

Sumeet: My favorite faculty at INSAID is Deepesh Wadhwani Sir. He taught visualization, statistics, and probability really well, which helped me in performing exploratory data analysis. He also advised us to approach Python in a way that allowed us to use our expertise to give insights, rather than relying solely on AI or machine learning. This was a great learning for me.

Question 6: What is the goal of Data Science?

Sumeet: My goal for learning data science is to enable better decision-making using data and to realize the value of discovering insights which can lead to business success. Machines can only provide valuable insights if they are given previous data and it is applied properly.

Question 7: In your view, how has Data Science evolved in last few years?

Sumeet: So, the changes in data science have been dramatic. Earlier, it was thought to be just a project that could be completed in 10 days. Then, with the development of various AI algorithms, the field expanded.

In addition, the availability of cloud infrastructure has increased computational power, which was not possible earlier. Also, the availability of data has increased drastically. As you may know, decision-making should not be random, but rather should be based on learnings. These are the three things that I think have changed a lot.

Sumeet: So, the current trend of generating language or written text in the form of ChatGPT by scraping the web and doing it intelligently has excited me a lot. Apart from that, the discovery process has been eased up due to the availability of various research-based and optimization tools. Also, in logistics, the optimization of routes and bays has been made easier.

Question 9: Which are some of the blogs that you follow?

Sumeet: As far as the blogs that I follow are concerned, the most helpful one is called ‘Calls Blog‘. They provide Q&A sessions for students to learn from, and also present various use cases, like how to predict current events such as NFL touchdowns, job market insights, and Oscar winners. They also cover topics such as big data, business analytics, and data monetization.

Additionally, they offer insights on topics we often have questions about, such as the difference between machine learning and deep learning, and the maths skills required in the industry. They also provide information on how data centers and SAS are solving media-related problems.

Question 10: What is your advice to anyone wanting to start a career in Data Science?

Sumeet: As for starting data science, I don’t think I’m the right person to advise anyone. But from my own experience, I would say that you should be open to making mistakes and have a clear goal in mind as to why you want to learn data science.

Understanding your personal goals and project requirements is important, and you should also be aware that it takes time to learn. Despite the challenges, I find it exciting as I believe that the future of data science is bright and promising.

We hope you enjoyed reading this interview. Check out the INSAID Spotlight for more interesting student stories like this.

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