From the desk of DiVA

Introduction to DiVA: What’s in a name?

by Dave Herberich, VP Analytics & Data Science

At Marqeta we are always looking at data internally and providing customers with insights whenever possible. However, as we’ve grown, we’ve decided to invest in a dedicated team in order to push the frontiers of data access, analytics, and action — similar to our accomplishments in payment processing. As a part of that effort, we’re happy to announce a new group: Data insights, Visualization & Analytics, or DiVA, for short. The DiVA team consists of data analysts, data engineers and data scientists of varying backgrounds including marketing, pricing, computer science and economics. There is one common theme for all of the data ‘gurus’ in DiVA: we love solving problems, creating opportunities and answering questions with data.

As the name suggests, DiVA is meant to cover a variety of functions: Data, BI, Analytics, Visualization and Data Science. This reduces down into 3 data-driven principles: Data Access, Data Analytics and Data Action:

(1) Data Access: Make curated data available — fundamental to fostering a data driven culture,

(2) Data Analytics: Provide actionable insights from analytics that become increasingly sophisticated, understandable and automated over time in order to better inform the ‘decision loop’ (one of my favorite articles on this topic) and

(3) Data Action: Provide the ability to take action for the data insights.

In each future desk of DiVA blog post, the above three principles will provide focus in an ever changing data landscape caused by the growth in computational power and the explosion of data analytics software. This changing landscape has created new buzzwords: Big Data, Deep Learning, Data Science, and likely helped increase the number of journal article submissions. What has not changed is the fundamental desire to be data driven; a desire we feel strongly here at Marqeta.

Our focus on these three principles is through a payments lens, meaning our data and analytics outputs will always have payments front and center. We have experience thinking through CRM opportunities at all stages of a program’s lifecycle: monitoring card activation during a program’s launch, evaluating marketing efforts and other experimental testing situations during growth, and providing relevant metrics as a program matures. Further, we are currently working on some new features to improve our capability of sharing aggregated analytical outputs and modeling efforts. We have big plans for the future, aimed squarely at improving each program’s ability to take action on relevant analytics.

It’s an exciting time to work with data but the name DiVA is also meant to poke a little fun at those of us working in analytics and data science. I’m in no way demeaning (pun intended) the value of data-driven work, as I’ve seen firsthand the value of both complex algorithms and simplistic analytics done well. However, with the Economist, BusinessWeek, WSJ and others as your paparazzi… it’s easy to feel like a diva…. So, if you can’t make fun of yourself, who can you make fun of? Whether you appreciated the joke or not, I hope you enjoy hearing from the desk of DiVA in future blog posts.

Dave Herberich leads a team of incredibly talented individuals tasked with solving data related problems, answering questions through analytics, and creating scalable data science solutions using modern technology, programing languages and software. He has more than 8 years of experience building and leading teams focused on leveraging data to solve problems with private companies. Dave received a BS from Tufts University and a PhD from the University of Maryland.