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Field Report: Business Informatics

As a dual student, Jakob Stindt regularly swaps practical phases for theoretical phases and partner company for university. Here he reports on his experiences and gives valuable tips for all interested future students.

Jakob Stindt is a dual student at HSBA in the Business Informatics programme. He rotates every three months between university and his partner company Deloitte, where he works in the Risk Advisory team. In this article, which he wrote for the career blog of Deloitte Germany, he describes the structure of his business informatics programme and gives valuable tips for all interested future student

Dear Jakob Stindt, you have been studying business informatics at HSBA since October 2020. How is your degree programme structured?

I am completing a dual Bachelor's degree in Business Informatics with Deloitte at the Hamburg School of Business Administration (HSBA). The semesters are divided into practical and theoretical phases, each lasting three months. At HSBA, as a dual business school, the entire curriculum and the structure of the degree programme, including any semesters abroad, are adapted to this structure. The Business Informatics degree programme is at the interface between business administration and computer science. Accordingly, I have a much greater IT focus than my colleagues who study business studies “only”. At the moment, for example, I have the modules "Front End Design", "Programming 1", "Databases" and "Modelling Business Information Systems".

During the practical phases, you are assigned to the Risk Advisory team at Deloitte. What exactly does that involve? 

When I’m with Deloitte, I am assigned to the Extended Enterprise Team, which is part of the Cyber and Strategic Risk area within Risk Advisory. For the most part, I am involved in software licence audits and software asset management advisory services. In software licensing audits, we check companies on behalf of software manufacturers to see whether they have the necessary licences for the software they use. In software asset management, we advise clients on how they can make better use of their IT assets - for example, software licences - in order to save effort and money.

My tasks so far include extracting data and analysing it with Excel, creating PowerPoint presentations and doing research on various software products. What's nice is that my colleagues not only explain how to work on a task, but also what impact this task has within a project. That really helps me to better understand the complex processes. Since the beginning of my studies, I have learned a lot about the structure of IT landscapes in companies.

What has been your highlight at Deloitte so far?

It's hard for me to pinpoint that to a single event. Rather, my highlight is the close supervision and support I get from Deloitte. During practical phases, I can approach anyone in my team with questions about tasks or processes. I also get good support from Deloitte during the theory phases.
My colleagues often took the time to explain complex backgrounds to me in detail, even a second time if necessary. I was treated as an equal from the very beginning. At Deloitte we are all encouraged to use the casual German “Du” instead of “Sie”, which I think is very helpful, as it makes for a more informal atmosphere. Even during the pandemic, there were opportunities to get to know colleagues better through Zoom events after work, for example at games.

What are your professional goals after graduation?

Of course, it's very difficult to answer that in the second semester. After completing a dual Bachelor's degree at Deloitte, there are many opportunities for further development. For example, I could well imagine doing a dual Master's degree at Deloitte. In general, my goal after graduation is to gain further practical experience in many different projects, to further qualify myself with courses, certifications and trainings and thus build up expert knowledge.

There are certainly many students what they should do after high school. How did you become aware of dual degree programmes and Deloitte back then, and how did you know it was the right thing to do?

The various options after graduating from high school can definitely overwhelm you. I became interested in dual degree programmes in the business administration field early on, as a certain "hands-on" approach helps me a lot in understanding new topics. The dovetailing of theory and practice seemed just right to me. 
In the course of several internships and the like, I realised that I would like to have a larger computer science component in my studies. I was also interested in business and IT consulting as a sector for my studies, as you always find new challenges in different projects here.
During my subsequent research, the dual study programme at HSBA with Deloitte turned out to be one of my favourites, as all of these criteria applied to this programme. I had heard of Deloitte before, but I didn't know that Deloitte also offered dual degree programmes. In retrospect, I can now definitely say that this decision was the right one and that I really like the dual study programme at Deloitte/HSBA. 

"At every stage though, you shouldn’t be afraid of asking or reaching out to colleagues and superiors. I think it is very important to be as authentic, polite and ambitious as possible."

What is your piece of advice to new students at HSBA?

I found it very helpful to dive into the subject and do some research on the internet. To learn more about specific companies and universities I would recommend visiting relevant trade fairs and check out the info sessions some universities offer. Overall internships and practical experience helped me best to find out what I wanted. High School can hardly impart this kind of knowledge about the professional business world. At every stage though, you shouldn’t be afraid of asking if you have a question or reaching out to colleagues and superiors. I think it is very important to be as authentic, polite and ambitious as possible. 

How did your company and HSBA handle the challenges posed by the COVID 19 pandemic? 

It all worked out very well. With Deloitte I was always able to work remotely and many events, that were planned as face-to-face events, were held online without difficulties. 
HSBA has a strict hygiene concept for on-site exams and all courses and seminars were offered online. Of course, face-to-face lectures would have been nicer but, as the study groups are very small, it was still possible to stay in contact with all lecturers and fellow students. 


We are very thankful to Deloitte for their kind support.