Emil Kos on Carving a Career with Alteryx
Emil Kos on Carving a Career with Alteryx

Emil Kos is in no doubt as to how important Alteryx is to him. When we come to the end of our chat over Google Meet, he stresses how lucky he feels to have come across Alteryx four years ago.

“I really love the tool and I have a great career because of it,” he says. “It has really changed my life.”

Initiating change

Of course, like all stories with a strong sense of destiny, luck is only the half of it. Inevitably, the other half involves a protagonist who is itching to initiate change or is on the lookout for improving the way we do things. And that’s exactly the case with the 34-year-old from Cracow.

“A couple of years ago I was working for a bank,” he recalls. “I was using Excel on a daily basis to do some really mundane and boring tasks. I was maintaining some reports that needed to be updated on a daily or weekly basis and if you had seen some of the tasks that you needed to repeat, after half of the year, you hate it.”

“So I started looking for my own path. I tried Robotics, I learnt SQL, I passed Business Analytics Certification but I wanted to automate my work and bring value to the organisation. I didn’t know proper code like Python or VBA (Visual Basic for Applications) so I wasn’t able to do it. When I saw Alteryx, I recognized it as an opportunity to automate my work and do something more interesting.”

Game changer

On discovering Alteryx, Emil found he no longer needed to spend so much time manually updating reports. This was a game changer.

“If I can give you one example, we had one particular quarterly report that was a cost model,” he says. “We had different clients and compared them to see how much they were costing us to service. You might have two clients bringing in one-hundred thousand dollars per annum but one might be costing you more than the other on lots of different levels, like engagement or service.”

“This report was for senior level stakeholders who used it to make decisions around pricing and so on. So there was pressure around the delivery and the report was always late. Once it was a whole quarter behind schedule. We also kept losing really good people because they simply didn’t like being involved in delivering this report. When we automated it using Alteryx, we delivered on time, gave better insights and kept more of the team.”

From those early days of working with Alteryx, Emil moved to a larger bank where Alteryx and Tableau were part of the daily working fabric. This was a great opportunity to further develop his data skills.

“I was maintaining systems with millions of transactions and using Alteryx, we analysed data that no one had gone near before. That was simply because they didn’t have the tools to work with such large amounts of data. This was really interesting because we were able to deliver better insights and make suggestions based on what we saw, meaning managers could make better business decisions.”

Alteryx User Group Poland

Emil’s passion for Alteryx has grown steadily and he is something of an evangelist when it comes to inspiring others to take up the tool. He is one of five Alteryx User Group leaders in Poland. The group is in its early stages still but there are definite signs of growth and Emil notes that the numbers of job vacancies requesting Alteryx as a skill has increased five fold.

Emil has also been busy answering community questions and is now in the top twenty when it comes to contributors. 

When he is not sorting out people’s Alteryx queries or analysing data, he tries his best to get out running. Before covid started, he  completed a half Iron Man and was “quite pleased” with the results. 

It is unlikely he will share the data around those running, cycling or swimming times next Thursday,but there is still plenty to look forward to next Thursday October 21st.

“I will focus on best practices when using Alteryx,” says Emil. “With people changing companies or positions  internally or even just going on holidays, it can be hard to maintain some workflows. So if you invest a little time into making things more polished and standardised within your organisation, it can make things a lot easier. I’m also going to look at tips for implementing Alteryx in Excel teams which I have a bit of experience in.”

On the day, Emil will be joined by Alteryx Ace Alexander Groß and our very own Irish based Ace, Dave Pansegrouw