My consultancy journey so far, by Rupak, Antaes Principal Consultant
A few years back, I decided to join the consultancy world and to become an Antaes consultant for Antaes Asia in Singapore. Several reasons pushed me to join this company, and a lot of elements made me stay afterwards.
Taking a decision to leave an organization to join another is not that easy. At a time of all kinds of uncertainties, I was wondering about new company’s culture, tradition and business values would fit. Also, I questioned myself about how to collaborate to ensure the sustainability and growth of my professional career, to maintain a high standard customer-centric delivery, and in terms of lifelong learning.
As anyone else starting in a new professional environment, my early days at Antaes were a turning point to develop my confidence and to assert myself in my position.
Of course, we all make mistakes as we start new roles. The questions that most frequently comes to my mind, are what will happen if we make mistakes? How will Antaes and our client interact and react to the mistake? But luckily, both Antaes and our clients build a safe space for consultants to make mistakes without being punished, but instead receive a relevant coaching to avoid making the mistake a second time. Constant and regular feedback is the key to learn much faster and reduce the learning curve. Regular feedbacks, throughout the course of a project – not only at the end, puts the manager in a position of coach rather than a supervisor.
This kind of culture motivated me to always search for a customer-centric solution, with a motto of “putting the customer first” and a “customer is king” approach of my work as a consultant.
I started my journey with Antaes Asia in 2018; since my arrival, and for the past three years, I was able to successfully deliver several compliance domains projects.
One of these projects was the implementation of the New KYC process for one of our main clients in the financial sector, in relation to the European Union 4th Directive to have a risk-based approach (RBA) to Customer Due Diligence (CDD) to perform client onboarding including Simplified Due Diligence (SDD) and Enhanced Due Diligence (EDD). The main goal of this implementation is to protect the financial institution from threats, such as money laundering and terrorist financing.
Another project I worked on was the automation and standardisation of the client and a Politically Exposed Person (PEP) screening process for our client.
I also carried out data enrichment, data quality and personal data protection projects.
But my actions and projects weren’t only held in Singapore. Indeed, in 2019 I had the occasion to take a trip to Geneva and Monaco to provide compliance trainings and help my interlocutors during the User Acceptance Testing (UAT) phase of their projects.
This trip gave an excellent opportunity to interact with people from Monaco and Switzerland and to learn more about their culture and work environment. This stage of my career was both satisfying and useful for me, in so far as it provided me with a better knowledge of who my clients and users are, and ultimately allowed me to provide a better consulting service.
These projects are strategic global projects, high on business criticality and a token of the Antaes consultants’ expertise and knowledge. They required constant monitoring and follow up with many actors such as the Group compliance, HO Compliance, site specific compliance team, IT Security, Process Governance, Application Integration, development, QA tester and other transversal teams and departments to deliver some projects in Agile methodologies and some projects in conventional SDLC methodologies.
One of the key differentiators of Antaes is that it continually encourages learning and improvement. This is one of the things I like most about my experience with this company.
Antaes’ culture brings engagement, and its high-level leadership encourages us to go for continuous trainings. Regular training not only helped me to better answer the need of the client, but also provided me guidance to manage people by resolving and solving conflicts. Training definitely helped me to manage business agility with the technology and to align to a professional environment with constantly evolving technologies and processes.
Antaes higher management supported me in my earning journey by providing me an opportunity, and encouraged me to acquire several certifications like Scrum Master, Scrum Product Owner, Prince 2 which help me to manage clients’ projects based on the role requirement. Due to my constant interest towards compliance, my manager motivated me to peruse some compliance certification. The knowledge on more tools, process, compliance domain experience gave me more confidence and skills to better satisfy the clients.
But no matter how important skills and confidence are to provide a good consulting service, one also needs to find its fuel, its core motivation to feel fulfilled and efficient in one’s work.
I constantly get motivated by customer satisfaction and try to understand the business requirement, and try to deliver solution aligned to the company strategy and goals. In the current market situation where attrition in consulting is very high rate in the industry, Antaes Asia managed to doubled its resources in 2021. While the war for talents is raging, motivating and engaging employees is still the best strategy to retain them. Antaes Asia has the highest level of management and had well thought strategies to manage its resources, and to ensure a low attrition as well as high employee engagement. I am glad I got to meet the supporting, encouraging, collaborating people and qualified teams I work with, and to evolve in this company’s culture and environment. Without these elements, my professional journey would not be fruitful or fulfilling. Thanks to the team and the company for providing me an opportunity to grow, it was a pleasure.