Company Profile: KETL The Company Taking on Data and Diversity

Data. That thing we all need to tackle in order to run a successful business. But sometimes it’s not all that easy, right? Cue KETL – the company that loves data.

KETL endeavours to offer a helping hand with all your data woes, whether they are complex, simple, large or small. We caught up with Helen Woodcock (pictured left), Marketing and Business Development Manager for KETL, to find out more. “We help companies to merge, manage and understand their data,” she says. “We get involved in lots of different types of work, from Single Customer View (SCV) projects to creating a business intelligence reporting environment.

“We work with companies in all sorts of industries because data is still data to us. Sometimes clients have huge amounts of data needing to be processed in real time. Other clients have small but complex data sets that need to be processed accurately due to regulatory requirements.”

The company has worked with the likes of Age UK and Monsoon Accessorize. Helen adds, “We have been the delivery partner for [Monsoon Accessorize’s] large project and we have worked with some exciting technology including Exasol – a super-fast in-memory database.”

Transitioning to tech

KETL was born when MD Ian Cray spotted a gap in the market for this type of consultancy business. Since then, the team have been doing great things and the company’s generosity certainly doesn’t end with data.

Diversity within tech is a prevalent issue and one that KETL would like to internally rectify. Helen explains, “Like most companies in the IT sector we have been trying to create a diverse workforce with a range of skill sets and experience. We are a small consultancy but we have big ambitions to make sure that we are driven by doing a good job for our team, our clients and for our wider community here in the South West.

“We discovered that many of the skills in the toolsets that we use are not widely available. We had been running regular user groups for one of our toolsets, Talend, and had found that it was difficult to encourage tech curious people to come along.”

This is where Girl Geek Dinners and the Women’s Tech Hub came in. Helen tells us, “We put together a free evening workshop to introduce anyone interested in a career in technology to basic development work in Talend. DeskLodge were great and offered us a place to run the workshops. We met a lovely bunch of trainee developers.”

Both Girl Geek Dinners and the Women’s Tech Hub give women a space to network and talk to other like-minded women about all the fantastic tech related things they’re doing. Helen says on her blog that the discussions inspired her to get creative about strategies to recruit women in tech but it also highlighted how key diversity is to the success of a company.

Better together

The workshops have proven to be tremendously successful. Helen tells us, “we now have Sara Price and Dana Bopp working with us from the original cohort.”

The two women have made an apt contribution to KETL so far. “Sara’s experience is exactly what we had hoped for,” says Helen. “Sara (pictured left) has an MA in English Studies but she has always been tech curious and she is extremely organised with a laser focus on detail. Since joining KETL in July 2016 Sara has become a qualified tester and she is currently studying for a diploma in Business Analysis. Sara is our go-to process person.

“Dana (pictured right) is a PMP project manager and has an MBA but wanted to update her experience and confidence in the tech industry. We offered Dana a 1-month introduction with our outgoing Technical PM, Sarita Harrison. Dana joined us in January 2017 and is now a key member of the team.”


Written By: Shona Wright

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