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Clouds are gathering – and it could be great news for your career

With the Internet of Things gathering momentum, the fast-growing sphere of cloud services could offer the stimulating career you’re looking for.

Network servers

The Internet of Things (IOT) is set to outstrip the number of connected humans in the next decade with a projected 20 billion connected ‘things’. So what types of career are emerging from this exciting space? For one Cambridge Judge alumnus, it has offered an unexpected and fascinating journey.

Ananya Galohda, Cambridge MBA 2011, is getting set to head up cloud services activities for Siemens in Charlotte, North Carolina. It is a space he did not expect to find himself in, but one for which he is a committed advocate.

“The Internet of Things is now changing the game for a number of traditional players. The volumes of data generated and recorded, compared to what we have seen in the past, are something completely new across all businesses and industries. It means there are a lot of opportunities opening up because the future success of organisations will be defined by their ability to store, have real-time access, analyse using automated smart algorithms and take immediate business decisions on large data pools from varied sources and time periods. We are already seeing this in consumer facing internet based businesses now this is a game changer for more traditional, B2B and mainstream businesses. Cloud and services based on it will be a key enabler here.”

Ananya’s own journey with Siemens began in more traditional waters. He started out in different industries in the conglomerate, experiencing financial services, wind power, and power and gas in a short time span, before moving into their cloud services arena to work on their Vision 2020 and beyond.

“Siemen’s main strategy has laid heavy focus on digitalisation, and within digitalisation, the cloud space – from platform to software. On the platform side, we have just launched Mindsphere, a cloud-based open IOT platform, to offer an ecosystem where the customers and partners would come together and do business in terms of developing apps, providing services for various industries. This is just one area where Siemens is involved in the cloud space. Additionally there are a number of cloud based apps we develop for our diversified customer base. Moreover our core software offerings are increasingly being deployed on cloud using different business models”.

While his MBA was crucial in securing a position with Siemens, and the company’s own Finance Excellence Program which was the conduit for Ananya’s developing career trajectory:

“The MBA set me up for a change of industry and geography, which moved me on from my commercial banking background. The Siemens Finance Excellence Program (SFEP) then gave me the opportunity to try out different industries within a conglomerate – a rare opportunity in such a short time span. My career path was enabled by the SFEP – as a result of the visibility one gets from the programme, one develops a great network among senior members in the Siemens community.”

Conrad Chua, Head of Careers at Cambridge Judge Business School, suggests that the technological space can benefit greatly from the skills of MBAs:

“Cloud services, machine learning, AI and IOT – they’re all becoming increasingly central to business. MBAs can struggle to think how they can be part of this, if they are not from a technology background. But they have a lot to offer: they can play a catalyst role in helping an organisation plan for and exploit these new spaces. They can help an organisation change its structures and create new businesses based on the new technology. They can use the persuading, influencing and negotiating skills, which are such a big part of the Cambridge MBA, to help people in an organisation change the way they do things and to help clients to understand, adopt and get the most from this new technology.

The Cambridge MBA’s Digital Business module helps people understand how they can get the most out of technology in an organisation. It helps MBA candidates prepare for roles where they will be expected to grow or change a business using technology and technological change.”

Ananya’s advice for any MBA contemplating a career in the cloud space is simple:

“The strongest piece of advice I can give is to be flexible. This whole cloud space is extremely new, it’s not defined and it’s evolving every day as more and more start-ups move into this area and more traditional businesses realise this is something they need to survive and perform. I would suggest having an open mind-set and being ready to adapt quickly as change happens very fast in this sphere compared to a traditional industry. If you are someone who enjoys change, you’ll enjoy being in cloud services.”