DataCareer Insights: Interview with Markus Lenker from Mercedes-Benz Consulting

You are working as a Manager in the Team Analytics & A.I. at Mercedes-Benz Consulting. What excites you about your work?

With the topic Analytics & AI we are technologically at the forefront of current developments. It is very exciting to be involved in setting the future course for the automotive industry and for Daimler in particular. In addition to our technical topic, I am particularly impressed by the spirit and motivation of my team. Working together on complex issues and interacting with so many different departments and individuals is a lot of fun and ultimately the reason why I look forward to my work every day

What kind of tasks and questions are you currently working on? 

Our area of responsibility basically comprises of three focal points: Data Analysis, Artificial Intelligence and Process Automation. These cornerstones describe our current activities very well. In addition, we deal with topics that are enablers for these three focal points. One example is a modern IT cloud infrastructure. Last but not least, in such a dynamic environment it is important not to lose sight of the bigger picture. We therefore keep up with technological developments in the market and in the industry and are in close contact with start-ups, universities and various technology providers. 


«Before starting your career, gather experience from different industries and companies.»

Markus Lenker,
Mercedes-Benz Consulting

Markus Lenker heads the Analytics & AI department at Mercedes-Benz Consulting GmbH. Together with his team of AI specialists, they take on challenging data science projects in the automotive space. Markus has over 10 years experience in the automotive sector, where he has been active in the areas of brand strategy, digitalization and marketing.

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How are projects usually structured and how does the composition of an analytics/data science team look like? 

In our projects we usually work in a kind of triad: A project manager with expertise in the respective specialist area coordinates and controls the project. A hybrid consultant represents the AI & Analytics competence of our team in the project. Depending on the situation, this function can be provided by a data analyst, a data engineer, a data scientist, an IT architect or an AI specialist. In the end, we work together in a tandem of professional expertise in the field and technical expertise and have had very good experiences here. Our department can also be seen as a kind of cross section, since our goal is to set up projects from all business areas in accordance with our data generation and usage standards. 

Which skills would you regard as vital for your current job role

For my current job as head of the Center of Competence, above all I need to communicate clearly and precisely; the subject is often not trivial and therefore requires a lot of communication and transparency towards our internal and external customers. It is also important not to lose sight of the big picture. What really generates added value and what doesn't? Of course, our field of activity is very technological. That's why a certain joy in dealing with technology, complexity as well as figures and data is also required

What was your career path? Which steps gave you the most important learning experiences for your career? 

After my business studies, my path led me directly to an automobile manufacturer. At that time, digital business was growing rapidly, so I had the opportunity to work on exciting digital topics in the automotive industry right from the start. Here we learned above all to place the wishes of our customers at the center of our actions. Over the next few years, I was able to deepen my experience from different departments and perspectives on the subject. I have always enjoyed various topics and challenges very much, which is why after almost 10 years I decided to switch to the internal management consultancy of another automobile manufacturer. Here I first worked on the subject of Digital Business & eCommerce before I had the opportunity to set up a team of specialists on the subject of data and AI at two locations. 

How do you see the development of data science/analytics over the next years? 

For me, a data-driven culture and the right mindset are the key drivers for the future in the coming years. This means that more and more data will be collected and processed. This makes it all the more important to identify the relevant data and use them to make the right deductions for the further development of business and to be able to address customers in a targeted manner. In my view, data science and data analytics will become the central job roles in the coming years, across companies and industries. Data will be the USP in the future. That's why I can only encourage you to get acquainted with the subject. 

Which three pieces of advice would you give to aspiring data scientists? 

Before starting your career, gather experience from different industries and companies, do not commit yourself to a single technology and never neglect lifelong learning. This will prepare you very well for all future challenges. 

Mercedes-Benz Consulting

We are Mercedes-Benz Consulting. Our mission is to empower people and organizations, to blaze new trails and to travel them together. With a focus on Future Mobility, Future Retail and Digital Shift, we constantly aim forward – without losing sight of the people and challenges of today. As a wholly owned subsidiary of Daimler AG, at Mercedes-Benz Consulting, we live technological expertise. We bring drive, solid expertise and experience to every aspect of sales. From Business Management to Digital Performance, Sales and After-Sales to Mobility and Connectivity

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