Idiomatic team member feature: Michelle McIntosh – Principal Data Science Analyst

Idiomatic News

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Could you please tell us about your background and your current role?

Searching for common ground across a wide range of interests and cultures has always been an interest of mine. While pursuing my degrees in international politics, I started incorporating geospatial analysis as part of my studies. GIS brought me into tech, where my first jobs included working with US and Canadian contractors. Eventually I switched to the commercial side of geospatial mapping with Apple, then pivoted to Idiomatic 5 years ago. All of these jobs were fueled by my desire to help make the world an easier to navigate, smaller and less scary place where we learn more about each other through better access to information, travel, and culture.

Idiomatic also embodies this need for better access and information for all. In my role as a Principal Data Scientist, I read thousands of conversations and responses to find common ground with customer pain points and train our ML to recognize these situations. Clearer and stronger customer voice insights force companies to be better, more accessible, more responsible, and to celebrate the differences within their customer base. 

What do you like most about your job?

As nerdy as it sounds, I really enjoy organizing and structuring the data. It’s a motivating challenge to ‘clean up’ the data and find the patterns within it to train our machine learning.

How do you like to spend time outside of work?

My partner, dog and I just moved to Switzerland. Much of my time outside of work is outdoors – hiking, jogging and swimming in the summer, skiing in the winter. I’m learning French and plan to learn German after. My partner and I love to travel and after our trips, I spend a lot of time trying to replicate some of the new foods we tried.

As a Principal Data Science Analyst, what’s an average work day like for you?

Five years into working for a startup and I still don’t know if there is such a thing as an average day, especially since every client is very different. Much of my time is spent building the categorization we train our machine learning models to follow and researching each client and their customers to empathize, understand, and determine their largest pain points. 

What’s your favorite Idiomatic feature and why?

This is going to sound cheesy, but my favorite feature is actually the Idiomatic team itself. This is the only place I’ve worked where I can completely trust and count on my coworkers. I love working with a team that is fully invested in building something great.

From your perspective, how does Idiomatic solve our customers’ challenges?

We solve customer challenges quickly and with clear examples on what to fix. This saves our customers so much time and money but also provides a foundation for what their company can do to stay competitive – so everyone wins.