My experience as an Intern at Relatas, the beginning of my career in AI.
Hey, I'm Kaustubh, a final year Electronics and Telecommunications Engineering student from Mumbai with a passion for programming and Artificial Intelligence. I'm currently employed at Relatas as a Machine Learning & Artificial Intelligence Intern and here's my story, the Relatas way.
The coronavirus pandemic struck. I was in lockdown. My college shut down. I can't play volleyball or football anymore. I can't workout at the gym. It feels kinda grim with bad news all around and there are no signs of things getting better. This was the situation the entire world was in.
I decided to light it up with my love for coding and the enormous amount of time I had now. I started building projects from the endless list of projects that I've always wanted to build. Took all the courses that I've wanted to take. It's amazing. I'm learning all these new things, solving more and more problems everyday. But eventually reaching the dead end when my brother asked me the question that changed everything.
"Cool. You learnt all these things and have this many skills. What are you going to do with them now?"
I was stumped. I've done projects, internships and research papers but nowhere could I use everything I have and contribute towards something big because these internships last nearly 1-2 months and are more training based. So I started looking for another internship. I applied for Relatas Machine Learning Internship as soon as I saw 'minimum 6 months'. This is what I needed. Time. Time to understand a product, how it works, what it accomplishes, what more it could do and how to do that.
I understood why 'minimum 6 months' internship is required at Relatas. The kind of projects Relatas is working on is not the run-of-the-mill projects. They need deep understanding of business and technical knowhow.
I believe there are 3 stages of learning something. Theory, practicality, and application. The first 2 are extensively covered in colleges, courses, etc. but application is something that is slightly difficult to achieve by yourself. This is where internships like this come in, where we can cement our learnings by working on something that has significance in the real-world.
The Application Process
The application process at Relatas is highly efficient and very well managed. It is a 4 step procedure where applicants are throughly tested and filtered to suit the company's needs. The rounds are as follows:
- The first round is a general interview over Google Meet where they try to identify our plans and intentions behind applying for the internship. It is a simple 15-30 minute get-to-know-you call. I had my call with Naveen (Technical Lead), he was very comfortable to talk to with his casual but professional manner.
- The second round is a coding assignment where they provide a dataset and a detailed problem statement that we have to work on. First we are required to submit a pipeline of our approach and then the code for the assignment. For any doubts, Naveen was simply a text away and was very helpful during the entire round.
- The third round is a technical interview over Google Meet where they try to understand how much technical knowledge we have. It was a mix of theoretical and programming questions. I had my interview with Kempa (Technical Lead) for about 1 hour where he asked me questions over a wide range of topics. The thing about this call was that at no point of time did I feel like I was being questioned. Kempa was extremely friendly, reassuring me and actually explaining the answers to questions that I did not know about! Overall it was a delight.
- The fourth and final round is a call over Google Meet with Sudip (CEO, Relatas) where he explains some of the official requirements for the internship and answers any doubts we have.
And that was it! That's how I landed my internship at Relatas.
The Work Experience
I have been working as an ML intern at Relatas for nearly 3 months now. I will be breaking down my work experience month-wise.
- Month - 1
The first month was mainly spent on 2 things. Getting comfortable with the environment & getting comfortable with the data. I was given a brief Knowledge Transfer by the previous intern working on this project. Then I was asked to teach myself some new technologies which I would be using during this internship. These mainly included Spark (specifically PySpark) and MongoDB. The complete development environment is neatly packaged into a docker container which makes it fairly easy to use. Kempa, who is also my primary contact at Relatas, was always a call/text away and greatly helped me to understand everything.
- Month - 2
During the second month, I had final exams at college my college which had me worried about how I was going to handle both the exams and my internship at the same time. But Kempa and Sudip were very understanding and allowed to focus solely on my exams giving me a break from the internship. I still had the code for the project I was working on so during my exams, whenever I got the time, I studied this code so that when my exams get done, I can start working immediately.
- Month - 3
This is when I actually started working on the project I was assigned. It is challenging and fun to work on. Kempa is always there for help whenever needed.
There are numerous reasons why working at Relatas is a delight, here are some of them.
- Unique - The projects that Relatas is working on are unique and revolutionary. It comes as quite a challenge to work on them and develop something that I couldn't have imagined.
- Friendly - The work environment is very friendly. Everyone is addressed on a first name basis. We get to set our own deadlines and work based on our convenience.
- Understanding - Everyone is quite adjusting to sudden unforeseen circumstances that take place (my laptop crashed and I wasn't able to work for a week) and handle everything patiently. The team was patient, but it was a good learning experience for me.
- Time - Regular meetings for progress updates and feedback. These meetings are always short and to the point. Learning time management.
- Documentation - Maintaining proper documentation for everything that goes about in the company.
- Innovation - We are allowed to execute our own ideas and write innovative code. Everyone is open to new, better ways of going about a problem.
- Business comes first - Everything is done keeping in mind its business need.
Overall, I believe Relatas is a great place for an internship. I'm sure all interns here learn very important skills that will be needed in their future roles. I myself learnt a lot about office work ethics and I'm still working on it. Relatas not only brings revolution in Sales and AI but also revolutionises the people working there.