Mukul Sabharwal, Data and Analytics Principal in the Gurgaon office, shares his journey into data science and what helps him excel in the field at Metyis.
Meet Mukul Sabharwal, Data and Analytics Principal in Gurgaon.
Tell us a little about yourself
Having grown up in Delhi, India, I recently relocated to Gurgaon, a major corporate hub for MNCs, with my wife and 3-year-old daughter.
I have a background in mathematics, and my passion for the subject has always driven my interest in pursuing a career in data science and machine learning. I am deeply committed to sharing my knowledge and insights through speaking engagements and staying current in the field by obtaining relevant certifications.
Beyond my professional pursuits, I am an adventurer at heart. One of my most unforgettable recent experiences was completing the gruelling trek to the Everest Base Camp. Over the course of 12 challenging days, I covered a distance of over 130 kilometers, pushing both my physical and mental limits to the absolute maximum.
What first sparked your interest in data science?
After studying theoretical mathematics, I sought to gain more practical experience in optimisation within my master’s in operations research, which led to a successful transition into data science and machine learning.
A personality test using Carl Jung's axes of introversion and extroversion revealed that I am a ‘Coordinating Observer’ more suited to the analytics industry. This aligns with my passion for structure, correctness, and making the complex simple.
As a keen observer and data scientist with several years of experience, I have learned to always ask the "why" behind the "why" and to break down requirements into smaller, more manageable problems.
What led you to Metyis?
After spending most of my career in retail, I was itching for a change. When I got a call from the HR team at Metyis, a hypergrowth company in a new industry, I was intrigued. I immediately checked out the website and was blown away by their journey and the structure of the site. I said yes without hesitation.
The interview process was impressive, and I enjoyed each interaction. Since joining, I've been consistently impressed with Metyis' focus on both strategy and execution. Another thing that really stands out for me is the company culture and how approachable the people are.
What do you enjoy the most about your job?
I now lead a team of data scientists and visualisers who are the execution arm of the Brands and Product team for the Hugo Boss Digital Campus (HBDC). We embed data transparency and tools around generative AI to help our partner make better decisions around their key decision moments.
I am responsible for setting the team's strategic direction and providing them with the guidance and support they need to achieve success. The best part of my job is that we work closely with the client. We celebrate successes and learn from failures together. We always ask "why?" twice.
What gives Metyis’ Data Science offering an edge?
Metyis has some of the best data scientists delivering top-notch solutions, and we recently opened a dedicated training academy at the Metyis campus in Porto with renowned professors who carefully curate its content. This academy itself is a key part of our commitment to providing our partners with the skills and resources they need to thrive.
What really sets Metyis' apart is its unique approach to working with partners. We work closely with them to understand their needs and then develop and implement customised solutions to help them achieve their unique goals. We share accountability for delivering results, which makes us true partners in their success.
How do you feel collaboration creates impact?
Collaboration plays a crucial role in the success of any organisation, and it's particularly vital in a rapidly expanding company like Metyis, where data is the backbone of our operations.
What's even more impressive is how Metyis is expanding at such a brisk pace, creating an ever-increasing demand for experts in various domains. The fantastic thing is that no matter what specific expertise you require, there's an expert within our extensive network spanning over 15 countries worldwide.
Recently, I found myself in need of some guidance on fashion-related topics, coming from a different industry background. It was remarkable how quickly Metyis connected me with experts in the field. This assistance was instrumental in enabling my team and me to provide solutions that received an overwhelmingly positive response from our clients. What truly stands out is that the people at Metyis are not only incredibly knowledgeable but also incredibly approachable and friendly.
What advice would you give the newcomers in your field?
It's all about digging into the "why" behind the "why". My top piece of advice for newcomers entering the world of data science is to focus less on the flashy algorithms and more on understanding the business context and the problems they're meant to solve.
I made the mistake of not asking the right questions when I first ventured into this field, and that's been my most valuable lesson. So, especially when you're starting out in your career, don't hesitate to inquire about the business context.
Lastly, keep in mind that, often, it's the simple solutions that get the job done.
What’s your take on Gen AI? How do you feel it’s transforming businesses?
A technology that has been getting big-time attention in the Machine Learning world today is Generative AI. Generative AI is already helping organisations identify new opportunities, develop new products and services, and improve their operational efficiency at a radical pace.
Recently, Microsoft announced a $10 billion investment in OpenAI, the research laboratory that launched ChatGPT. Since then, organisations have been amazed by ChatGPT's capabilities. Some say it's ahead of its time, but companies that are embracing generative AI are already seeing huge benefits.
According to a CB Insights report, there were over 1,000 generative AI startups in the world in 2022. These startups are developing a wide range of products using generative AI, including text, image, music, video, and code generation tools, as well as medical imaging and financial analysis tools.
I believe that organisations should embark on the journey of Generative AI by developing data transformation strategies, experimenting, and adapting to the changes in an agile way.