“Summer Internship at ICICI Lombard General Insurance Company in Mumbai as an intern with Business Intelligence team for a duration of 2 months.” This one sentence gave me manifold happiness! Firstly, I got a chance to intern with number one general insurance company of India. Secondly, I got an opportunity to work in the domain of analytics and lastly, yet most importantly, I would be spending two months of my internship at Mumbai, the place where I have been born and brought up.
Seven of us from IIM Nagpur were chosen for internship at ICICI Lombard GIC. Our internship was to start from 3rd April. ICICI Lombard had made all the travel and stay arrangements for the entire duration of two months in Mumbai which showcased not only their professionalism but also helped us realise the kind of importance ICICI Lombard had given to the summer internship program. I could readily understand their core values of humility, integrity, and passion.
On the first day of our internship, we reached the corporate office of ICICI Lombard at Lower Parel by 9 am. Along with us, there were students from various other reputed B-schools from around the country. On the very first day, I got the flavour of how well was the internship formulated with a schedule to be followed for next two months and the project allocations decided well in advance. The first two days were designated for an induction program where we were briefed about the internship program, the expectations from us, etc. We had an excellent opportunity to interact with the top management(MD, EDs, VPs, AVPs) and understand how the different verticals operate at ICICI Lombard. These two days of induction were beneficial to give us all an essential insight of the insurance industry. Oh, also worth mentioning is the lavish lunch during induction!
My mentor, Mr Chirag Bhojani, VP Business Intelligence Unit (BIU), briefed me about my project. The project was to analyse and optimise the time required by the policy document to reach the customer once the policy is generated. He explained me the need of the project and also how important the project was for ICICI Lombard. I was also told that my recommendations will be viewed by the Top Management. Though the task sounded intimidating, Chirag Sir assured me that the BIU team would always be there to help me out if I got stuck somewhere. I, along with a fellow classmate from IIM Nagpur, was under Chirag Sir’s mentorship. An advice that my mentor gave me that stands relevant for all of us is that we must leverage these two months of internship to understand the domain and industry and decide whether we would like to make a career in the same industry and domain.
I was introduced to the BIU team with whom I would be working with for my internship. Chirag Sir asked one of the team members to help me out with my project. All the team members warmly welcomed us.
One of the best things about the internship was the culture at ICICI Lombard. We were considered as part of the team and not as temporary interns. Working alongside, going together for lunch and snacks, celebrating birthdays, lunch parties, etc. made us feel included in the team.
For my project, I had to first understand the current process and time required for each activity. I started interacting with various stakeholders to understand the process. For this, I scheduled meetings, travelled to different ICICI Lombard offices, and had conference calls when visiting the office for meetings was not feasible. Gathering relevant and complete data is the most troublesome job for any data analyst. I, too, had to follow up many times with the stakeholders for getting the relevant data. After receiving data from company personnel, I had to contact external contractors and courier service providers for understanding their processes. Another tip for the readers is, keep asking the question ‘Why’; for understanding and optimising an entire process, it is necessary for you to understand the perspective of different stakeholders and how one activity is linked to the other.
ICICI Lombard made sure I received regular feedback from my mentor, and they took feedback from me too to understand if I was facing any issues. The HR team made every possible effort to make us comfortable so that we could deliver our best. Even though there were formal reviews scheduled, my mentor made himself available whenever I had any difficulty.
Towards the end, I presented my analysis and recommendations to Mr Girish Nayak, Chief Customer Service, Operations & Technology. My project was well appreciated and accepted. On the last day of our internship, the HR team organised a lunch for all the interns along with our mentors. In conclusion, it was a great learning experience not only from the BIU team but also from the peers from different B-schools.
Benjamin Franklin’s quote, “Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn”, echoes with me every time I recollect the time I spent at ICICI Lombard. SIP at ICICI Lombard has not been just an academic requirement, but it was more like an experience. An experience that helped me develop both professionally and personally. I guess ICICI Lombard knew this beforehand and hence named their first ever Flagship Internship Program – ANUBHAV.