9th July 2024

From Graduate to Game Changer: Taha’s Journey at Vodafone and the Impact of the Vodafone Foundation

Taha Aydemir
Digital Analytics Lead

Around my last year at university, I developed a particular interest in data gathering and data processing roles. Telecommunications was especially interesting to me because it’s an area where data is so abundant.  

As soon as I heard about the Vodafone’s Discover graduate program, I applied. I was keen to be part of a company that supplies such critical services. The connectivity this sector provides is extremely important for a society to function properly and it fascinates me. Whether it is being able to make a call or browsing the internet, I know that I wouldn't trade my internet connection for most of my privileges at this point!  

These days, I’m still here at Vodafone. After the graduate program, I worked as Product Lead for our web platform, then as Event and Sponsorship Lead for our sports-related activities. Currently, I’m into my fifth year of my current role as Digital Analytics Lead, where I am basically a bridge between our technical and business teams: I help them to help them build an ecosystem where data is utilised properly. I’m responsible for the management of the digital data and tools we have in our marketing technology (MarTech) stack, and I work with our business teams across all of our digital platforms (applications, websites etc) to identify what kind of data is required. I then convert those business needs to technical terms, and build a development plan about which tools and techniques we need to use.  

Vodafone Foundation 

While at Vodafone, I’ve worked quite a lot with our awesome Vodafone Foundation. The Foundation’s mission is to help overcome economic and social problems that exist in the countries in which we operate, and I am really proud to be part of a company that uses its resources to act for such positive change. 

I first connected with the foundation when I was volunteering with the ‘Coding Tomorrow’ project. I was teaching children on a free course being run on Unity, a game development engine I am proficient in thanks to game development being one of my main hobbies. The project coordinator knew I was from Vodafone and mentioned me to the Vodafone Foundation, who contacted me shortly afterwards to ask if I wanted to work on some projects with them. From then on, I have become involved with a number of projects that I have loved being able to be a part of.  

The best moment for me so far was seeing the effect, first-hand, of the ‘Coding Tomorrow’ container that Vodafone organised for the people in the earthquake zone in Kahramanmaraş. The tragedy that those people went through is hard to describe, and seeing the impact that Vodafone Foundation had on the children and parents there was very emotional. The red container and other activities by Vodafone seemed to symbolise hope and happiness for them and became one of the reasons for smiles that appeared on the kids’ faces. It was a sight to see.   

The foundation sends out a mailing list with upcoming projects regularly, so anyone who wants to get involved should look out for their emails - it can be easy to miss in the sea of emails we receive daily. They also have a WhatsApp group with past volunteers, and they share it all on social media too, so give them a follow if you want to be notified. There are some Hackathon and Ideathon projects coming up which are always exciting to participate in - I always look forward to those!  

Vodafone life 

Vodafone is the most pleasant workplace I’ve ever worked in. I have seen a lot of other workplaces and I am sure that my stress levels day to day would be a lot higher if I was working elsewhere. I also enjoy the many social activities available to us, and all the opportunities we get to participate in interesting projects and events. As long as you are proactive, there is always something interesting to do here.  

Beyond that, it is rewarding to know that the work we do has real value. Every action we take changes the way millions of people interact with their digital platforms in some way and that makes the work we do that much more enjoyable. I definitely made the right decision when I left university and decided to apply for Vodafone’s graduate program!