Rushen Patel, Head of Enterprise Data Science at Marks & Spencer

Marks-and-Spencer is a UK based retailer that is undertaking a transition from an ‘old-school’ bricks-and-mortar enterprise to a digital-first company. As part of that transition, an enterprise data science team was established 1 year ago – with the remit of deploying ML to improve decision making within the business.

In this talk I am going to cover our journey as we targeted and executed our first ML use cases, the challenges and learnings from building business stakeholder trust as well as the pain points we experienced moving our initial use case to production. I’ll also cover observations on the most effective ways of working and team structures that we have found for establishing a successful data science function.