LinkedIn Strategy & Analytics - Ask Me Anything

Hey Everyone,

I'm a second year analyst at LinkedIn in the Strategy & Analytics rotational program.

S&A is a unique 2-year rotational program that allows analysts to rotate between functions such as Business and Product Strategy (BizOps), Corporate Development, Sales Operations, Product Marketing, Data Science, and more. Check out the website to learn more (I can't post links but just Google the program)

A bit about me

I've always been interested in strategy, technology, and startups. I was about to work in consulting, but then this opportunity came up and I couldn't pass it up. 2 years later, I can confidently say this was a great decision for me.

Given the increasing interest in technology careers, especially straight out of college, I thought it might be helpful to share my experiences from working across the following teams:

  • Rotation 1: Consumer Marketing Strategy
  • Rotation 2: Sales Operations
  • Rotation 3: Product Strategy (B2C)
  • Rotation 4: Product Strategy (B2B)

Surprisingly there's not that much quality information on non-technical careers in tech. Hopefully this thread can shed some light.

Lastly, I have a career advice blog called 2 by 22. Over the past ~3 years, I've documented everything I've learned about career discovery, decision making, and breaking into competitive companies. Check it out (again, just Google the name) and feel free to message me/add me on LinkedIn.

Comments (21)

 
Jun 17, 2019 - 10:09pm

Hey, pretty interested in hearing about your experience. A recruiter reached out to me not too long ago about the program. Let's start off with some basics:

What did you like most about each of the rotations?

Do you feel like you learned a lot of technical, transferrable skills?

If you had to go back and do it again, would you change anything? Different rotation perhaps?

 
Jun 20, 2019 - 10:38am

Yeah the recruiter has been reaching out as we are kicking off recruiting for the next class.

"What did you like most about each of the rotations? - This is a tough one to answer. There are general things that are consistently amazing like the people, team, culture, and work. More specifically though, I liked that I could focus on developing certain skill sets in each rotation. I commonly advise new analysts to take a skill-based approach to selecting rotations. Skills can be tool-based technical skills (Excel, Powerpoint, SQL), soft skills (communication, cross-functional stakeholder management, problem solving), and industry experiences (paid marketing, machine learning, enterprise go to market, etc.).

A few highlights of what I focused on in each rotation:
* Consumer Marketing Strategy: learning the ropes of working with cross functional partners, basic professional communication, my first couple Excel and SQL analyses, and pushing my strategic thinking/problem solving skills.
* Sales Operations : Learn how enterprise sales works, how to operate large sales teams, forecasting sales, setting quota for hundreds of reps, and extensive Excel and SQL analysis
* Job Seeker Product Strategy: Work closely with product managers to drive growth (read a lot about product growth paradigm), competitive strategy, paid marketing/customer acquisition, deep LTV analysis
* Job Poster Product Strategy: Partner with the head of product for our team to think through our portfolio of products for job posters, define key metrics for our team, define the product road map and evaluate new opportunities, drive measurable impact to the ecosystem

Do you feel like you learned a lot of technical, transferable skills? -- 100% -- I think everything I learned is directly transferable within tech. For context, I studied business in undergrad. However after working in tech for close to two years, I think it's critical to have a solid grasp of how data works, analyzing large sets of data, and experimentation statistics. I was able to learn all of these skills on the job by focusing on them at various aspects of my rotation. One aspect of the program is learning how to use SQL (which is taught in on-boarding). Most (if not all ) of my peers are comfortable writing hundreds of lines of SQL code to run complex analysis, despite starting with little or no knowledge. In my current rotation, I've also been able to dive pretty deeply into machine learning. I have weekly conversations with our AI engineers to learn about how our systems work, which we use to inform our product road map.

If you had to go back and do it again, would you change anything? Different rotation perhaps? -- The first two rotations are assigned and the latter two are electives (think core vs. elective classes). While leadership will work with you and your goals to assign a rotation that makes sense, there's only so much you can influence that. For the rotations I was assigned, sure -- it would've been interesting to spend time on Data Science or Sales. But that's just one of the (few) limitations of the program. I had to prioritize what I wanted to explore in my two electives. For those electives, I definitely would not change anything. They put me where I am today, which I'm very happy with.

I've written a lot of career advice for college students on my blog 2 by 22. Check it out!
  • 1
 
Jun 20, 2019 - 11:01am

Awesome. Thanks for the response. It is extremely insightful. I have a couple more questions for you if you don't mind.

You mentioned the rotations brought you to where you are today. With that said, I am curious about what's next for you? Do you have any sort of idea what you may want to do beyond the rotational program?

Along the same lines, what are the exit opps? Has anyone decided to leave the company entirely after doing the rotational program?

Curious about comp and comp progression as well. Any sort of insight would be great.

I forgot to ask this before, but how large is the program?

Thanks for doing this. It will help people, like myself, explore opportunities within non-traditional paths.

 
Jun 21, 2019 - 10:46am

With that said, I am curious about what's next for you? Do you have any sort of idea what you may want to do beyond the rotational program?

My medium-term career goal was (before entering the program) and still is to try my hand at building a startup. I'm going to push myself to make the jump within a few years. For now, after the program is over I'm going to explore product management opportunities. After working in strategy for a couple years, I want to develop the skill set of building new products from the ground up. Given my goal of building a startup, I think this will be a helpful career move.

Along the same lines, what are the exit opps? Has anyone decided to leave the company entirely after doing the rotational program?

The exit opps are great -- the vast majority of analysts are able to land a top choice role they want, whether that's internally or externally. If we take an average of all the cohorts so far (I'm in the 4th class), probably half the analysts stay for 1 year + after the program. Within my class, I think most people will stick around for a bit longer. Of those who leave, it's not because they don't like LinkedIn (many have an accelerated career path ahead of them if they stayed). Usually people leave because they want a startup experience, move to venture capital, or B-School. Functionally, strategy, product management, and product marketing tend to be the popular choices. But it really depends person by person.

I've spoke to alumni and other analysts who have interviewed externally and all of them consistently say this program sells itself. People in the silicon valley recognize and deeply value BizOps (strategy), Product Marketing, Data Science, Sales Ops, Corp Dev etc. from LinkedIn. Especially the BizOps team, because not many companies have a strong BizOps org. I believe modern BizOps was invented by Jeff Weiner (CEO of LinkedIn) and Dan Yoo (Former head of LinkedIn BizOps). As a result, a lot of BizOps teams at other companies were founded by ex-LinkedIn BizOps.

I forgot to ask this before, but how large is the program?
Usually 8-10 people per class.

Curious about comp and comp progression as well. Any sort of insight would be great. Analyst compensation is between consulting and banking (~$120k all-in). Because a lot of the program is a "choose your own adventure" model, hours vary but most analyst put in ~50 hours a week.

After two years and assuming good standing, you are offered a promotion to an associate role which is in the high 100's for all-in compensation (base, stock, bonus, 401(k), etc.). So far everyone has received this promotion. High performing analysts are able to get the senior associate role within 1 year of graduating the program (3 years out of college). I believe all-in comp at that level is ~$200k. This is all for BizOps. Other functions have their own comp progression.

I've written a lot of career advice for college students on my blog 2 by 22. Check it out!
  • 1
 
Jun 21, 2019 - 11:33am

Thanks for answering my questions. Now that we know a little bit about the role, I think it would be great to learn how you discovered the opportunity.

What was the recruiting and interview process like?

What kind of internship experience do the recruiters want for the program? Would you say the analysts in the class had similar previous experience?

 
Most Helpful
Jun 24, 2019 - 10:55am

I heard about S&A through a couple alumni from my University who were in the program. Most people find out about the program through LinkedIn InMails or friends/alumni. S&A does not have "target schools" or GPA cut offs anymore, and looks for people with the right skills, professional background, and interest.

Aside from the S&A program, the majority of people who join the BizOps org have 2+ years of experience in consulting, which influences how the org operates and recruits. Most of the S&A analysts had internships or cross-offers with MBB, BBs/buy-side opportunities, or high growth startups. That being said, I think they take an open minded approach to recruiting. You can break in with a wide variety of backgrounds as long as you're analytically sharp, can think strategically, and have a passion for technology.

Interview process tests strategic thinking and problem solving through case interviews, interest/basic understanding of technology, company-specific questions on LinkedIn's business model, and lot's of culture fit questions.

I've written a lot of career advice for college students on my blog 2 by 22. Check it out!
  • 3
 
Jun 26, 2019 - 10:15am

See comment above

I've written a lot of career advice for college students on my blog 2 by 22. Check it out!
 
Jul 26, 2019 - 1:19am

No way, I actually read your blog post on the program before arriving at this thread haha.

Anyways, hopefully not too last to ask questions -- what is the difference between the two application cycles? How do I decide which to apply to?

Thank you!

 
Aug 4, 2019 - 12:51am

There's no material difference. We do two so that people with tight deadlines (usually return offers) can still consider S&A.

I've written a lot of career advice for college students on my blog 2 by 22. Check it out!
 
Aug 4, 2019 - 12:53am

It's probably more informational, but general advice would be to act professionally and do a little research to show your intent/interest.

I've written a lot of career advice for college students on my blog 2 by 22. Check it out!
 
Sep 13, 2019 - 11:45am

No

I've written a lot of career advice for college students on my blog 2 by 22. Check it out!
 
Sep 9, 2019 - 4:23pm

Rohan-2by22 Would you happen to know if the interview process has kicked off already? I applied during the second round of applications, and I was just wondering if there is still hope for receiving an interview at this point.

 
Sep 13, 2019 - 11:45am

The first round finished. There is a second round that is kicking off any day, and should wrap up by end of September.

I've written a lot of career advice for college students on my blog 2 by 22. Check it out!
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