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Ayumi's Experience with Dell's Finance Development Program

Ayumi smiling headshot

Ayumi C. | Senior Financial Analyst, Global Business Operations | Japan 

Originally Published: September 8, 2022

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? 

My name is Ayumi. I was born in Japan, but grew up in the U.S. After high school, I moved to Tokyo to study International Relations at Keio University. Upon graduating from college, I joined Dell Technologies in April 2020 as the first Finance Development Program participant in Japan. 


What is the Finance Development Program like? 

The FDP is a two-year development program that provides entry-level university graduates with an opportunity to launch their new careers in the CFO organization. This program includes rotations for a wide range of experience and MBA-type course work to build solid finance, operations, and business skills. 


What did you find intriguing about the program? 

I thought the structured nature of the program was perfect for me. I like to have an input-then-output cycle in place whenever I learn something new. Since my academic background was Political Science and I wanted to explore a new field upon graduating, the fact that the FDP curriculum provided both classes / case studies (i.e., input) and daily jobs (i.e., output) was a big positive. 


What was your experience like through your four rotations? 

I had the opportunity to try quite a few different roles. My first rotation was as an Assistant Finance Controller in Small Business Finance & Operations, where I took on out-of-cycle trend analyses, special pricing, and setting up account receivables reviews. Now that I think of it, the special pricing scope was key to understanding the value-add and crux of finance. Then, I moved on to GTM & Sales Enablement, followed by Dell Financial Services. Here I took on a Project Manager role with a diverse portfolio of projects ranging from reporting simplification to raising internal awareness / penetration of DFS offerings in Japan. Finally, I ended my time in the FDP with a rotation in Global Audit & Transformation as an Internal Auditor working with a global team on process audits outside of the CFO organization. 


Looking back at the past two years, how do you think you grew?

I saw a significant growth in finance and business acumen through the classes and rotations, so the input-then-output cycle I was expecting was definitely there. Also, I think the program instilled in me the importance of beyond-the-role contribution to the FDP community and the CFO organization, which I now actually enjoy as a breather from my daily job. Most importantly, I learned a lot about myself from strengths and development areas to preferences. I learned that what I’m good at isn’t the same as what I want to do or should be doing; it’s important to find that balance between doing something that you can use your skills to make an impact in and doing something that will challenge you.  

ayumi and man

Before joining Dell

Ayumi smiling

After graduating from FDP

What kind of leaders and colleagues did you meet through the FDP? What did you learn from them? 

My colleagues in the program are stellar. A lot of them have a Finance or Business degree, so I relied on and learned a lot from them when it came to reading financial statements and understanding how things connect. Also, we all come from various cultural backgrounds, so I was able to gain practical intercultural communication skills while working with them. As for the leaders, all of them had some quality that I want to develop for myself in the future. Having two female Directors was especially impactful for me as I aspire to be a leader in the future. They both taught me that you can be a strong leader while being caring and honest about what you don’t know.

ayumi and group of friendsWith my FDP & ADP classmates at the Global Conference in Singapore

What’s next for you after graduating from the program? 

Ayumi on a Dell laptop I am moving on to a Business Partner Support position in Global Business Operations where I will be supporting all the Business Partners for the commercial and enterprise segments in Japan. I’m both excited and nervous about my first post-program role, but I’m sure it’ll turn out to be another terrific experience.  


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