Meet Praveen Parthasarathy from CreditMantri


At INSAID, we create accomplished and empowered Data Leaders. We groom our students to dominate the world of Data Science and AI and reshape their future. We value what our students bring to the table. We share their vision and support them during their journey and ensure that they carve a niche for themselves.

We’re proud to have tutored exceptional students all across India. Today, one such exceptional student, Praveen Parthasarathy stands in the spotlight.

Student Name: Praveen Parthasarathy
Current Organization: CreditMantri
Batch: GCD – September 2019
Total years of experience: 10 years

Malvika: Hi Praveen, before we begin, could you tell us more about your current work profile and your career trajectory so far? 

Praveen: So I started as an MBA graduate with a specialization in finance and marketing, and now I have around 10 years of experience in retail and corporate banking background.

So I was into the business consulting space with some of the largest private sector banks in India as well as the Middle East. I take care of the sales and distribution, stakeholder management for the entire spectrum of products, right from credit cards, personal loans, housing loans, business loans to short term loans and line of credit products.

I’ve handled project management related activities for some of the leading banks in Saudi Arabia, Dubai and India.

I presently work with a leading FinTech company, CreditMantri, which is also the largest marketplace in India for all the credit products. So my role involves handling project management of credit employment services for the customers and to help the delivery for all sister channels as a customer is then taken through an assisted channel, which means somebody has to help him and take him through. It’s not a straight-through processing. So the delivery of the channel is taking care of my needs. Now the key role will be to ensure that we have no hitches between the technology team, the system architects and the business management team. 

Malvika: What got you interested in Data Science & Machine Learning? 

Praveen: To be fair, I guess it was some time back in 2016. When I heard about something called Sophia from Hanson Robotics, it turned out they released a humanoid robot which will be able to take care of a human life in the absence of somebody.

So that is when I really wanted to know about what is happening in this world of Data Science. And I was also told that there’s almost some 25 billion tweets happening and then emails being sent.

So, the huge amount of data is what really got me interested to know what is happening on this side of the industry because I was completely into banking-related activities and financial services and wealth management background for the last 10 years; not so much into the Data Science and Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence related world. So because of all this information, which I came to know by reading a lot of articles is what got me really interested.

I was looking forward to the opportunities of what can we do with such a huge amount of data. And how do we use it to make some key additions to the business? So that
is what got me interested.

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

Praveen: Yeah, I have got a lot of knowledge with regards to Python.

And I’ve also learned tad bit of R programming, and the packages would be like Pandas, Numpy and the like.

We have used a lot of these packages to build our models and have gotten a lot of knowledge with regards to how to use GitHub, how to create projects and how to upload it on them. So these are some things which I have learned in the course so far, it’s been only three months, got a long journey to go. 

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

Praveen: When I joined, I got to interact with the fellow people from my cohort as well and figured out almost a majority of them were from IT background.

I was thinking they all might be well versed in Python and it would be really tough for me to compete with them and come out with the flying colors. So that was the initial challenge I had but the courses were taught in a way almost even a novice can learn a lot from the course.

So the way the course was designed really helped me to ensure that I am also at par with everybody else.

Malvika: What is the goal of Data Science? In your view, how has Data Science evolved in the last few years? 

Praveen: I’ll say, about the goal of Data Science, it should be to extract crystal clear insights for the business team from the raw data which we have in plenty around us today.

When it comes to the evolution of the Data Science in the last few years, I would say that the field has come a really long way but this it’s still not taken the potential transformation it can so yeah it’s in the beginning phases, and it’s got a really long way to go.

Like for example, if you see the Transportation and Logistics industry where we are starting to get data from the vehicles which are like unmanned, that is something which we can use as a use case and take it to a long distance in the years to come.

And then in Healthcare, we are like using the Computer Vision data for health care diagnosis of patients, which will really help almost all the patients who are facing a delay in diagnosis and at the end of the day, losing their lives.

And with regards to the Telecom industry, again, 5G is the next boom is what everybody’s saying. So I do see a lot of scope for Data Science and Artificial Intelligence in the long haul.

Malvika: What are the current trends in Data Science that you are most excited about? 

Praveen: Yeah, I would like to talk about CES 2020 which was happening in Las Vegas.

So I saw stumbled upon a piece of news about Neon, which is the world’s first artificial humanoid robot is what they claim; from Samsung’s Star Labs, the brainchild of Pranav Mistry.

So that is something which has really got my attention. I would say because there have been so many articles in the last few years post Neon introduction and CES 2020, people are saying even smartphones will be now going away from humans and it will be only these humanoid robots which will be assisting humans like we have seen in all the Sci-fi movies which have released recently so that is something I would say got me really excited.

Also, the fact that we have an Indian whose brainchild was presented and some six versions which got released. It understands the human emotions and replies to you say for example when you’re sad, so that was the example which they portrayed in the export. That is something which I’m really excited and want to learn much more about the Machine Learning algos and all and the coding which has gone behind it.

Malvika: Which are the top two Data Science & AI influencers or blogs that you follow? 

Praveen: I would say the Data Science Central and LinkedIn is like really helpful.

Analytics Vidhya is also very useful. And for all the latest updates, we can subscribe to Medium and various social media platforms.

When it comes to people I follow; close to like some 15 people on GitHub, who do a really lot of good stuff with regards to the latest trends and whatever projects they are putting online in Silicon Valley, Canada, France, wherever it is.

When it comes to people with and follow it will be most Dr. Kirk Borne who also came to INSAID to give a talk about what are the future trends and of course, I follow Mr. Ganapathi Pulipaka is also Accenture’s Chief Data Scientist based out of California. 

I also follow a few people who are from academia, like Yoshua Bengio and Geoffrey Hinton, both of them are from Toronto and Montreal Universities who write a lot about what is happening and what is the future going to be and stuff like that.

Malvika: At INSAID, students are encouraged to build high-quality GitHub profiles. Have you built a GitHub portfolio and how do you think this will help you? 

Praveen: GitHub is something that is really helpful to portray about all you have learned, and what all you have done.

So it’s not someplace where you have to share/upload an exact 100% model, which would be updated to the latest times.

You can showcase that this is how the model was during version one, then version two and it evolved by using some changes in the parameters and the algorithms. And version three might be what is the final outcome.

So that means people once they come to your GitHub profile, completely understand what all Praveen has done in the past. It also shows when you have been active so it makes the interviewer or whoever wants to know were you really interested or whether you have undertaken things for the sake of getting a job.

So that ways GitHub is really helpful. And we also had a detailed session to help us out by one of the people who have done a lot of updates in GitHub and has built a good profile. And we also got insights into how do you do markup language and markdown language to give a gist about what goes in your Python notebooks which are uploaded in GitHub.

GitHub portfolio is really important, and it’s also recommended that you optimize your GitHub profile and all your social media like LinkedIn, Twitter, and help people get to know you better.

Malvika: Crafting a great Data Science resume is a critical part of getting shortlisted for Data Science roles. Tell us some ways in which you have improved your resume as part of Data Science Career Launchpad.

Praveen: We had a detailed session on how to build our CVs.

So in that session, the main focus was to ensure that we tell to the interviewer, what is that we have done in the past? Say, for example, in that resume building workshop, we had a session exclusively to build your brand through LinkedIn, because what happens is the interviewers go either to your LinkedIn profile or through your GitHub profile and if you are somebody like me, who has not has done a lot of projects into Machine Learning, and has not used a lot of algorithms and coding, and obviously they will be not seeing your GitHub profile, but we’ll be looking at your LinkedIn profile.

Now at this time if you have done resume building and LinkedIn brand creation, it will be helping the interviewer to understand what they have done in the past and really help in getting the roles which we are like looking for.

Malvika: INSAID’s mission is to Groom Data Leaders of tomorrow. What do you understand by a Data Leader? And how is a Data Leader different from a Data Scientist?

Praveen: A Data Leader is somebody who I would consider as a bridge between the management and the Data Science team.

So a Data Scientist is somebody who will be looking into the data and as per the inputs from the business team, he works and goes back to the business team and recommends whatever it is and if the business team is okay with the findings.

They will be like accepting it or if they think no, it’s not okay, then they’ll have to again give another set of inputs for the Data Scientists.

Leaders understand the value of the findings and data and ensure this analysis gets implemented at the end of the day.

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

Praveen: First, I would say Data Science is not for everyone.

Obviously, it is for somebody who is really interested in this field and would not mind to spend the long hours in understanding what it is.

I’ve even seen videos that go on for two hours actually in the class, but I’ve taken it and split it and seen it for almost like 5-6 hours. We will understand everything in detail only when you go into the specifics, you will be able to get real insights from whatever is being taught.

What my advice would be to opt for this field only if you are really interested and want to make a lasting career out of this. It’s not for the light-hearted and the faint-hearted who just want a job, work for like 9-5 hours and then go home happy.

Malvika: How has your journey with INSAID been so far? Do you have any comments on how the curriculum has been structured, the faculty and the support team?

Praveen: With regards to the team at INSAID, it has been really good so far.

So now I’ve interacted with two faculty Suchit Majumdar and Lavi Nigam. Both of them have been great. Of course, we have Manav who features in podcasts to keep us all motivated and ensure that we don’t lose track.

We also have really good support for us from the Academics Team. 

Malvika: Thank you for your time, Praveen. All the best for your future!

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