Tuesday, October 8, 2019

#SheCanSTEM: Sandra Hicks

MLGW has 2770 employees; 752 (27%) are women. Of the 752 women, 143 (19%) hold STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) positions. On the second Tuesday of every month, we will introduce you to a different woman working in STEM at MLGW.

Sandra Hicks’ first interest in STEM fields came when she was a sophomore in college and was ready to declare a major. “I remember one Christmas break going through the Memphis State catalog and trying to determine what I wanted to do as a career.  I loved math and did very well in it, so when I saw Computer Science included eight different math courses, I figured that was the major for me!” she says.

At the time, there were not very many females in the computer science field minoring in Management Information System computer programming, so she was determined to continue the course. She started her career at MLGW 30 years ago as a computer programmer and later became database administrator for a mainframe system and an Oracle DBA (database administrator).

For the past 11 years she has been in the Business Intelligence/Data Warehouse area where she is the Lead Business Systems Analyst responsible for extracting and analyzing data for company reporting and dashboards.

We asked Sandra a few questions to get to know her better.

What do you do in your current position? 
I am responsible for making sure the data from source systems such as the Oracle E-Business Suite's HR/Payroll, Finance, Enterprise Asset Management, Procurement and Spend, as well as many other applications at MLGW, are loaded into our warehouse databases to provide data solutions to our users through analytical reports and dashboards. 

What's interesting or cool about what you do?
I get an opportunity to work with a diverse group of people and various areas around the company. I work closely with Finance, Work Management, HR and many other areas to gather user requirements and assist with finding data solutions to any issues they may have.  As a result, I gain exposure to many of the processes that help make our company function on a day to day basis.
Why would you encourage girls to pursue STEM careers? 
Even now, some girls still believe that careers in science, technology, engineering and math are for males to pursue. If math, for instance, is your passion, there are many opportunities in this field and it is very rewarding with good pay. Because there's no turning back when it comes to technological advances, now is a great time to get on board. 

What advice would you give your younger self?
Realize your strengths early and research a variety of careers that would allow your strengths to become your career. Pursue your dream career with confidence.

Did you miss our other installments of #SheCanSTEM? Meet Arnisa Davis, Kelsey Seiter, Debra Higgins, Kerry Roy, Cynthia Jones, Juanita Ford and Shleah Whitlock.

Monday, October 7, 2019

Happy Customer Service Week!

Arerion Yarbrough
Sophia Q. Price
Brenda Boughton
We visited the Customer Care Center to get to know some of our employees better and learn about what they do on a daily basis.

MLGW has nearly 70 Customer Care Center Representatives made up of full time, part time, temporary and retired employees. Each representative receives four months of training in a classroom and on the phones. MLGW's online chats are steadily becoming more popular with customers and Customer Care Center employees. Every four months CCC reps bid to see who gets to work web chats; however, everyone in the Center is trained and helps out when needed.
Timothy Baird
Dorothy Dewitt

Zelene Valdez
Dorothy Dewitt is a retiree with 50 years of service who now works in the Customer Care Center. Dorothy says when she started working at MLGW in 1969, she was just a baby. She likes talking to people, and helping them. Her advice to her coworkers? "One call at a time. Don’t take it personal. Don’t take it home with you." 

Sophia Q. Price has worked at MLGW for 28 years, and 13 have been in our Customer Care Center. Sophia says she has a smile in her voice at all times and always tries to put herself in the customer's situation. 

Brenda Boughton has worked in #MLGW's Customer Care Center as a part-time employee since 1986. (That's 33 years!) Brenda says she loves her coworkers, helping customers and doing the job right.

MLGW Customer Care Center Representatives are available by phone Monday to Friday, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. (544-6549), or via webchat from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
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