To begin this post I wanted decided to think back to the first day of class… I remember considering dropping the course because I then thought Professor Kane was scary (anyone else!?) based on his long syllabus and first class warning on the amount of work and interaction. I thought that I did not have enough knowledge on tech to be able to keep up and I was also very confused by the structure of the course… what had to be due when (I thought it was going to be impossible to keep up!). My roommate, who I signed up for class with, actually decided to drop the class- but I decided to give it a shot.
After two weeks in class I learned that all three of my above assumptions were INCREDIBLY wrong. Professor Kane- very cool professor (not scary at all & one of the best I have had at BC!), the structure of the class was very conducive to learning and made it fun to learn about the topics and discuss with classmates. Also, the class work was structured so that no one was behind- the material provided a great overview of the digital concepts that made me feel prepared for class.
Overall, I feel like I learned a lot about different types of technology that we have already seen or will soon see to be brought into the workplace. This course made me better understand how this technology will impact jobs- often times will not replace people all together but will be used along with humans- or has the ability to create new opportunities for jobs once tech is implemented. This has really helped me understand the that digital transformation is not something to be scared of but instead to embrace. Since beginning this course, I have become very interested in learning more of how Liberty Mutual (the current company I work at) is digitally transforming. This class has led me to volunteer to get involved in a new project (outside of my day to day FP&A work) to work cross functionally help implement digital tools to better understand how easy to use our current digital tools are/ how they can be improved by implementing Google Analytics.
I feel like this course really helped build my network as well- I thought it was great how we all really got to know each other’s personalities, jobs and even hear from some classmates on how they are using digital tools in their day to day jobs. One of the things I enjoyed most in the class was seeing other classmates’ presentations. I thought it was cool to see the variety of topics people selected across the board on digital transformation and new tech. This opened my eyes to new topics I had no idea about- which also helped drive my research for future blogs/ my own presentation. I think everyone in the class brought great insights and expertise in different areas across the board which helped drive discussions. I think all of the topics we covered will eventually surface into my work and life in the upcoming year or so but I wanted to highlight a few topics that I think are the most applicable to me right now:
Big Data and AI:
This topic has actually already surfaced in my work in which we are running an innovation challenge to generate AI ideas in finance. Aside from that I think that AI is something we will be seeing growing rapidly over the next year in the Insurance industry. From automating processes using algorithms such as fraud detection in claims to the future of your car being able to fully process a claim at the site of an accident I think there is a lot to come in this space- and companies are really racing to get there first.
Block Chain & Cryptocurrency:
This is a topic that I found very interesting and I hope to take another class in the future to get more understanding on block chain. Every week headlines revolve around cryptocurrencies that are taking off and companies that are now allowing payment with these new forms of currency. From investing to business application I can’t wait to see what happens with this type of tech over the next year. Even though we were strongly suggested not to invest in crypto during the course learning about it made me invest (small amounts) In the infamous dogecoin and other cryptos via Robinhood. As more people presented ton various forms of crypto and blockchain I wondered how big the hype would get and when the ultimate crash would eventually happen. I think other forms of blockchain will spring up as more people begin to understand the power in the of a form of digital ledger that can not disappear. One of my favorite videos we watched in the class that fascinated me was “Haun: How US Government is Using Blockchain to Fight Fraud” which talked about the story of how blockchain was used to find the owner of the silk road and eventually uncover FBI agents that were on the case that were also committing crime and stealing money. Prior to this course I usually heard blockchain associated with illegal activity but it is exciting to see what is next and how the story is changing.
Overall this class provided me so much knowledge that I will continue to explore and research. The best take away this class has taught me is that with the pace of change of technology to be able to stay relevant in your career you need to stay up to date on what Is happening in tech. And if you aren’t keeping up regularly you will fall behind. So with that I really hope the #ISYS8621 hashtag continues on twitter 😉.
Big thanks to everyone for a great semester!