The bank offers its data scientists and engineers an extensive and continuous training ecosystem, both in-house and in partnershipwith top international universities and educational institutions,so that they may apply the latest advances in artificialintelligence, machine learning and advanced analytics in thedevelopment of cutting-edge financial products. In addition, italso offers training to other professional profiles so that they canuse data analytics to solve business challenges in their areas.In just 5 years, the BBVA Campus has trained more than50,000 employees, including 900 data scientists, through theData University.
The current account movement categorizer or personalized suggestions to improve savings capacity are some of the functionalities that BBVA's data scientists and engineers have developed to increasingly improve the banking experience and the financial health of its customers. To ensure that this talent is constantly up-to-date with the latest advances in its sector, the bank has made Data University available to them. It is a program with a wide range of more than 9,000 hours of in-house training, which is offered in conjunction with universities and other educational organizations.
"Data University allows us to offer our data scientists high-level internal and external training on machine learning, artificial intelligence and advanced analytics. This training competes on an international level with the specialization courses offered by the leading universities and schools," explains Marco Bonilla, head of the Advanced Analytics Community of Practice at BBVA. “In addition, we also have a training offer aimed at business professionals, so that they can solve the challenges of their areas from a data-based perspective”. In just five years since its launch, 900 data scientists have been trained with Data University and 50,000 employees have completed one of the program's courses, 2,000 of whom have completed advanced-level training.
University and business
Data University centralizes its own training at the BBVA Campus corporate university. "Through this platform we offer everything from advanced courses, such as a data scientist qualification created together with the University of Navarra, to more initial training, such as the 'Data Scientist Fundamentals' introductory course in collaboration with Telefónica, designed for business professionals to acquire notions of programming, statistics or machine learning applied to finance," says Marco Bonilla. “In this way, we have managed to exponentially multiply the number of BBVA employees who can devise solutions to business challenges from a data-driven perspective”.
The bank has also signed collaboration agreements with several universities and organizations to provide its data professionals with high-level external training. With the University of Navarra, BBVA employees with a background in mathematics or programming can take the Master's degree in Big Data Science, the first official master's degree of its kind in Spain, or pursue an industrial doctorate in this area of knowledge. In addition, they also have the opportunity to complete the Master's Degree in Data Science at the Universidad Panamericana (Mexico).
In addition, through an agreement with the Carlos III University of Madrid, the bank offers several courses related to machine learning and natural language processing to its data scientists, as well as an introduction to programming languages for its data specialists. The courses are exclusive to BBVA, with content tailored to the specific needs of its experts.
A data-driven organization
BBVA has also signed an agreement with the GetSmarter platform, which offers courses from international educational institutions such as the London School of Economics, MIT Management Executive Education and the universities of Yale, Stanford and Oxford, for example. The courses range from data analytics to its application in certain sectors, as well as regulation and the handling of the most sophisticated programming languages.
This offer is completed with more than 200 specifically selected Coursera courses, access to the specialized publications of the prestigious O'Reilly publishing house, master classes, 'datathons' and, for newcomers, the assignment of a Data Soulmate, a mentor who guides new graduates joining the bank through their first steps in the Be Talent program.
"The three principles of data science are do analytics, learn new knowledge and contribute, in other words, share that knowledge," says Bonilla. With Data University, we strengthen the second of these within the organization and accompany our professionals by offering them continuous training to keep their knowledge permanently up-to-date. And it is by taking this science to all levels of the organization that we are making this program an important lever to make BBVA a truly data-driven organization, a financial institution guided by data."