Consulting company Neovantas gives IE University students the opportunity to step foot into the world of work as part of their studies. Internship program director, Juan de Rus, and Bachelor in Behavior and Social Sciences student, Josefina Pérez Jiménez, discuss their views of the program and its benefits for students’ future careers.

In today’s rapidly changing world, it’s all about perspective. Students from the Bachelor in Behavior and Social Sciences program at IE University use behavioral economics to bring consulting to a new level. By understanding the behaviors that influence our decisions, behavior scientists are able to improve business processes using a people-centric mindset. 

Neovantas’ internship program director Juan de Rus calls behavioral economics “a fresh perspective.” When analyzing a business process, a simple change in the vocabulary could very well make the difference between good and great, in turn, changing the final results. With a wealth of experience analyzing telephone calls, online processes, digital processes and commercial influences, Neovantas breaks down the biases and optimizes results. This deep behavioral analysis is carried out by a seamless collaboration among the company’s staff, including the innovative IE University interns who are eager to drive lasting change.

Blending perspectives

According to Juan de Rus, interns from IE University have a strong understanding of how to balance academic performance and business orientation. This, combined with their international backgrounds, makes IE University the perfect partner school for the global company. As the interns are studying the evolving market in real-time, they can bring new ideas and suggestions to the team of seasoned professionals. Additionally, Juan noted that the company’s flexibility and freedom are enticing qualities to the interns. This creates a chain of benefits for clients and interns alike.

Neovantas takes their role of training the next generation of behavioral economists very seriously. By allowing them to play an active role in the company from day one, Neovantas guarantees that their interns are involved in the day-to-day challenges and processes. From attending meetings and giving presentations to supporting the project in its entirety, students put theory to practice every day. Juan de Rus added that the most important thing for interns starting their first working experience is their attitude. Everything else can be learned, but the right working attitude is critical to their training.

Real problems, real solutions

Amidst the digital transformation enhanced by COVID-19, Josefina Pérez Jiménez received an email about Neovantas’ internship program from the IE Talent & Careers team. Her first project focused on developing a new, hybrid work model in a post-pandemic world. Josefina had to generate a benchmark of where the industry was, understand the new regulations, conduct employee surveys, and analyze the processes that would have to take place for employees to be happy and comfortable in a different working environment.

Working alongside the behavioral science team and with different clients, the team first had to identify the client’s issue and decide if it could be classified as behavioral. Then using benchmarking and behavioral mapping, Josefina and the team would look at the different frameworks, understand how the consumers were responding to the biases, and develop a prototype so the business could visualize where their processes could be improved.

Learning beyond the classroom walls

The experience at Neovantas is incredibly hands-on but simultaneously founded on theoretical knowledge. At school, Josefina learned design thinking, framework, bias, survey and how to apply these skills to improve a process. At Neovantas, Josefina was awarded the opportunity to apply what she had learned in school in real-life work situations.

It is important to think on your feet, work through the constraints and deliver to the client regardless. For a student, it is always exciting to apply your knowledge practically and see results.

Josefina Pérez Jiménez, Bachelor in Behavior and Social Sciences student

The experience for Josefina as a whole went beyond applying her new behavioral science knowledge. She also learned that professional mannerisms, presenting yourself to a client and submitting work to your manager are invaluable skills that are gained from this hands-on experience. Josefina believes that interning at Neovantas is giving her the opportunity to scale up in an ever-evolving market.