Zehua works at OMD, the world’s largest media network
Zehua Shan graduated from the master’s programme in Interactive Media Technology in 2017. He now works as a developer in the Marketing Technology team at OMD.
Hi Zehua, what are you working on at the moment?
I'm currently working as a developer in the Marketing Technology team at OMD. Most of my hands-on projects are development of dashboard solutions and data-driven creations to our clients. Some of my other responsibilities include identifying new technology, which is relevant for digital marketing. From time to time, I would also work on developing reporting automation tools for my colleagues, which is super appreciated!
Working with dashboard projects, it’s both a design project and a development project. What we present on dashboards are mostly per client requirements, but it also depends on insights from our media specialists. We don’t just display basic KPIs, but also try to provide compelling stories to our clients so they can make better decisions.
Most of the basic KPIs could be drawn directly through the APIs that are available, but sometimes, our international clients have tech stacks that are not as straightforward. In those cases, we have to develop custom solutions to pull data into our end, which also turns them into development projects. As part of those projects, I usually hold meetings with clients and different specialist teams internally as well, to define product specification, and also to obtain feedback from stakeholders.
During my master’s programme at KTH, we had a course where we made a voice robot which could take orders from customers in a restaurant. Having experience from that, we pushed for developing the same solution for one of our clients, which became a voice assistant project partnering with Google and Uber Eats, which could deliver food directly to customers’ homes. The project went live not so long ago, which is super fun to see of course!
What can a regular day look like at your job?
Most of the days start with internal meetings regarding the status of upcoming and ongoing projects, grabbing a coffee and crunching some code. I play some FIFA during lunch with my colleagues, and then back to crunching. Some other days are pretty much only meetings, both internally and with clients, it’s fun with variations!
Have you worked with anything else since you graduated?
I worked as a video editor for a project for a game development company, which is a hobby of mine.
Why did you choose this programme at KTH?
During my bachelor studies within the field of Information Technology, I took a course in Human Computer Interaction, which I found was super interesting. It was a good mixture of technology and psychology, and I enjoyed it a lot. When I was considering which master programme to choose, this programme was the obvious choice, and I did not regret it!
Are there any insights or knowledge you acquired during your studies that have been extra useful for you in your career?
I would say, how different technology works on a basic level, also how the design process looks like. It has been pretty easy for me to get into many new things since I already had a solid understanding of it in the beginning.
What were the best aspects of your studies at KTH?
Working closely with other students in multidisciplinary projects and making magic! Continuously learning new things, the community, atmosphere and a good mixture of work and funny jokes!
What is your best memory from your time at the universities?
In a course where we made a prototype of apps for future technology, we made an app for people to find other people that are willing to share their phone battery. In the last phase of the project, we made a video to promote the app. It looked like Tinder, but for battery sharing, and it was super cringy haha! Good times!
What are your plans for the future?
I’m not really sure at the moment, I’m having fun where I am right now and haven’t been thinking too much about the future. I would like to have more of a leading role, but still have some hands-on experimenting. Time will tell!
What would you want to say to a student thinking of applying for this programme?
I enjoyed my time in this programme a lot! It was really fun and worthwhile to learn new things and meet new people. If you would like to combine design and development in your toolbox, you should really consider this programme!