Emma Downey

Are there any other notable experiences from your time at Monash you’d like to share?

My time on Monash Motorsport was absolutely invaluable. Being a Chemical Engineering student, I didn’t have a place on the technical team so joined as part of the business team handling sponsorship, media and stakeholder relations and participating in business events at competition. Being a part of this team gave me professional experience before leaving university and really set me up once I graduated. I formed lifelong friendships, refined key business skills and was able to travel around Europe. It was the best thing I did during my time at Monash.

If you could tell your graduate self one piece of career advice what would it be and why?

Don’t stress about the small stuff! Students receive and feel so much pressure to always get the best grades, land a leadership position in a club and use credit points to enrol in subjects that provide the best opportunity for success. While these aspects of university are definitely worth striving for, it is equally important to explore your personal interests and have fun as well. There is infinitely more fulfilment and enrichment in enjoying your time in university which will help pave a clearer pathway to a successful and prosperous future afterwards.

What are the top 3 skills you need in your role as an Analyst – Product Operations?

  1. Problem Solving – This is the key to any analyst role and a skill you learn, utilise and hone while studying Engineering above anything else. An analyst is constantly presented with various problems and tasked to find the most efficient and effective solution to drive business, product and process improvements.
  2. Collaboration – Every team uses data and every team has problems that need solving or questions that need answering! This means that as an analyst, I often work cross-functionally and need to communicate with a lot of people to get the information I need or discuss the most appropriate next steps. Analysts also often work with other analysts with different skill sets in a very similar dynamic to Engineering end of year group projects.
  3. Agility – Things move and change very quickly in the tech world which requires agility, flexibility and adaptation. You have to be able to tap into different skill sets throughout a day, week or month to adapt to shifts in responsibilities or tasks.

Tell us about your experience since leaving Monash: how has you career progressed to date? Any professional achievements you’d like to share?

Just before graduating, I had a pretty big decision to make. I was offered a graduate role at one of the Big Four consulting firms in Melbourne - an opportunity that thousands of students strive for and one I was honoured to receive. However, I always had a dream of moving to NYC and starting my career there. I spent months deliberating over what was the best move for me and finally decided to pack my bags and try my luck in the Big Apple. 6 months and 300 job applications later, I landed an analyst role at HelloFresh. It was the toughest 6 months of my life and there were many times that I questioned my decision and considered giving up. Why give up a stable job in a familiar and comfortable location to start from scratch in an unknown city halfway around the world? Because the challenge is always worth the reward and stepping outside your comfort zone opens up an abundance of opportunities that you otherwise may not have even considered.

What are some of your passions and interests?

I would really like to explore my interest in sustainability in tech. I believe there is a lot more the tech industry can do to improve some of the world’s major sustainability concerns which there is either not enough advocation for or too many roadblocks to currently.