In September last year, we were joined by Mishael Akleker. A highly-motivated Graduate Consultant who completed a Masters at University, where she had worked on a number of different business challenges, including leading the business development team at a large, non-profit organisation and managing local consultancy projects. As part of the IFS Young Professionals programme, Mishael joined graduates from IFS, and supporting partners, on a five week trip to Sri Lanka, learning how IFS software works and developing an understanding of the different modules that make up the solution. It proved to be quite an experience!
“It’s been a whirlwind journey from university into the world of IFS and consulting! Prior to my Masters, I was at Nottingham University completing a 3-year undergraduate degree in Finance, Accounting and Management. I was able to engage in voluntary consulting, business development recruiting graduates from around the world and take part in my own start-up company, all of which gave me a great foundation in some of the technical areas of Finance. Finishing my Masters in International Management at Loughborough University, I enjoyed the year as the postgraduate representative for my course and the international representative for the postgraduate community. I took part in interactive modules such as International Marketing, where I created and marketed my own brand and ERP systems working with SAP to order and make my own crafted beer! My interest in business processes, and in finding creative solutions to business challenges, led me to apply to IFS and begin work as an IFS consultant with Cedar Bay.
Within Cedar Bay, I’m part of the Young Professionals Programme 2017 (YPP), which takes graduates through a series of training and skill building tasks on the path to becoming fully-fledged consultants. One of the most intensive training blocks lasts for five weeks and involves being trained by functional specialists at the IFS Research and Development centre in Columbo, the national capital of Sri Lanka. During these five weeks, I learnt the functional areas ranging from Finance, Supply Chain and Manufacturing to Projects and Human Resources.”
A simulated task to create a company that sells reverse vending machines (i.e. putting plastic in and disbursing money back) was one of the specialised programmes that Mishael was involved in; ordering parts for the machines, manufacturing, buying materials from suppliers, to the actual selling, working out shop order processes and procurement of materials. Working in a team to design and deliver business processes, Mishael was able to understand the complexities around IFS and see how different functions interact. But, despite the intensive nature of the course, it wasn’t all work:
“I enjoyed being a tourist at the weekends, backpacking and travelling by train and tuc tuc, and explored many different parts of Sri Lanka, from the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic in Kandy City, to the blue beaches of Hikkaduwa and Galle. I loved snorkelling and diving, and finally got the chance to swim with some dolphins! Sri Lanka is an amazing place and it was fantastic that Cedar Bay gave me the opportunity to enrich both my professional and personal experiences. Now I’m back home, I can utilise what I’ve learned to train others, take part in IFS implementations and help support cases with our customers. By being a part of various implementation projects, I get more exposure to IFS project components and in the future I’m looking to take part in their graduate rotation scheme, specialising more intensively in Finance, Supply Chain and Manufacturing.”
At Cedar Bay, Mishael will specialise in IFS software, with a focus on supply chain management, finance and project management. Find out more here.
“I’m looking forward to being a part of the Cedar Bay team, working closely with our customers and putting everything I’ve learned to day-to-day use!”
Here are some photos from Mishael’s trip: