At gap intelligence, new hires are slowly lowered into the water because we know that not everyone is an Excel wizard and we want to make sure that the onboarding process is as easy as possible. After having the opportunity of being a gapper for the past 6 months and having gone through the onboarding process, I would like to shed some light on my experiences and how gap has helped build a better me. To preface, I am a data operations specialist for the TV category, meaning I am responsible for all of the raw TV data that comes in through retail, advertisements, and through the ecommerce channels.
The first day of anything new can be daunting and the first day at a new company is no exception. New faces, new settings, and new processes can all be overwhelming. Luckily, gap understands and wants to ease new hires into their position. On the first day, new gappers are paired up with a “buddy”, which is a gapper with more experience under their belt and will act anywhere from a lunch buddy to a mentor. During my first day, my buddy took me on a small tour introducing me to each of the gappers in the office, and showing off our wonderful surrounding area, which is Liberty Station. While on the tour, my buddy gave me some pointers and spread the word about our values and what makes us unique. On top of that, my buddy bought me coffee! From a very small gesture, such as buying coffee, to explaining why we do what we do, it all truly stood out and provided me a warm gaptastic welcome.
Over the course of the next three months, I began to really feel a part of the gap family. On the work front, I found myself confidently flipping through spreadsheets as my Excel proficiency increased and I started to own a portion of my process. I went from being a fresh college graduate with minimal knowledge of the real world, to understanding the importance of my role as a data operations specialist at gap. I’ve learned to spot anomalies in the market through the 4 Ps of marketing: products, pricing, placements, and promotions. Armed with the knowledge of how the market is performing, I work hand-in-hand with gap's TV analyst to shed light for our clients and answer questions such as “When is a good time to buy a TV?” or “How much should we price our new product to stay competitive in the market?”. I have my manager and category analyst to thank for my development because they truly continue to invest time in my personal and professional growth. gap managers really care about your development, not just on the professional side but personal as well. During my weekly 1 on 1’s, I am encouraged to be open and talk about how things are going and if I am happy. This is all in conjunction with the strong cultural aspect of gap. The many activities that gapU puts on, from group workouts at Point Loma Sports Club to learning about pour over coffee, I consistently have the chance to bond with other gappers while improving myself.
Now, six months later, I am a full fledged gapper! As a data operations specialist, I own my entire category with hopes of taking on another category in the near future. The work that I perform at gap is seen directly by our clients and has the ability to effect decisions that are made in the market surrounding the 4 Ps. With the various trainings that I have gone through, I have immensely improved my technical abilities and have a deeper understanding of how everything is pieced together. What is amazing is how each gapper is a cog in the wheel that keeps gap moving.
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