Shefali Chand is a trainee on the IT track and is currently working in London for her second rotation.
Shefali did a bachelor’s in Information Technology in her hometown of Delhi, India, before love brought her to the Netherlands. That was in 2015. She decided to do a master’s in Computer Science and Engineering at TU Eindhoven. After an internship at Philips and her graduation, ING came into view. “I felt an immediate click with ING,” Shefali says. “I loved everything I saw and heard during the in-house day, where graduates from all over the world came to learn more about the bank and the various traineeships. Especially the talk by ING’s Head of Innovation made an impression on me, together with the fun we had that day and all the nice people I met.”
Understanding and using the power of data
Shefali’s first rotation was in the Wholesale Banking Advanced Analytics team, which helps different departments to better understand and use the power of data. “I worked on a project where we utilised real-time and historical trading data to build predictive models for financial traders. These are used when responding to requests for quotes. We also brought together all the applications and data sources they use on one screen, whereas before they needed five or six screens. I mainly worked on building and productionalising the predictive model, and thus putting a better, more intelligent model on the trader’s screen.”
Investigating, aggregating and cleaning data feels like being a detective
“Going to London for my second rotation was a great opportunity, but it could have easily been somewhere else – I follow interesting projects, not people or cities. For my assignment, I seek excitement and the chance to add real value. I feel I can totally do that in my current role, which is again related to Wholesale Banking. I’m working as a data scientist, but my job is a lot broader, although data is always the foundation of my work. Investigating, aggregating and cleaning data comes first, then the science starts. The first part is equally interesting for someone who loves data; it feels a bit like being a detective. With the trading data, we are building a prototype for an intelligent application which sends up-to-date bond prices to potential clients, proactively. It’s a kind of a marketing tool; if the client is interested, he or she can request a quote. Our app automates and optimises a process that until now was manual. This saves a lot of time for the traders and gives loads of interesting insights into the business. What I love about this project is the fact that I’m involved in the whole process: from the idea to the final product. I interact with people from all the different disciplines involved – engineers, UX designers, product owners, traders, testers – and that’s great!”
“I’m really glad I chose ING’s trainee programme. As a trainee you have lots of opportunities to build a solid foundation and a strong network, to get to know many different parts of the bank and to work in different countries. You also gain a broad view of how ING works, and in-depth knowledge in your own specific sphere of activity. Besides, I feel so much at home here. This feeling of belonging plays an important part in my job satisfaction.”
Shefali comes from a family of bankers in Delhi. Recently she took her parents and brother to see all the tourist highlights of London, but she normally explores the city by just walking around and observing people. Cycling is another favourite pastime, preferably with friends from study and work. Shefali likes reading, watching movies and comedy shows and is passionate about trying new cuisines. Her latest discovery is the Ethiopian kitchen. “They make curries like Indians!”