Jay Kuruvilla, DMBA ’15, develops digital strategies in fast-paced UX industry
As a production specialist for Boston Consulting Group in 2012, Jay Kuruvilla supported clients with their presentation deliverables, but he felt like he could add more value to the company.
After working closely with consultants all over the world who helped solve business problems, he made the decision to pursue an MBA degree but wanted to find a program focused on digital tools and innovation.
Jay invested time and energy into researching schools and curricula and landed on the MBA at St. Edward’s University. He began taking classes in 2013, and although the coursework was challenging, Jay enjoyed collaborating with students who had viewpoints and industry experience different from his own – in an environment where he was encouraged to think outside the box.
"I learned as much from my fellow classmates as I did from my professors," Jay said. "We took everything we learned, such as ROI, brand recognition and awareness, marketing, etc., and applied it to solve a business challenge for a company in the Austin area."
Through the program, he also learned how to look at the bigger picture – how to identify the value added and how to monetize ideas and products. This ability to strategize, look for opportunities and make recommendations has helped him in his current role as a user experience architect for Rockfish, a company that partners with large organizations to build digital solutions.
Jay uses his background in graphic design and animation and business savvy he gained from the MBA program to design apps and digital platforms for companies like Walmart, Sam’s Club and Banfield. He balances the needs of the user – their experience from beginning to end – with the goals of the client. "My role has slowly changed from just creating wireframes and prototypes to being more high-level and making strategic decisions, but that’s what I love about it!" he said. "I get to be involved with the decisions that directly impact the product and always consider the bigger picture."
As Jay travels between offices in Dallas and northwest Arkansas, meeting with team members and client stakeholders, no work day is ever the same. He is constantly reviewing project deliverables and making decisions based on design, strategy and consumer behavior – but that ebb and flow keeps him motivated to execute his best work.
In the year and a half since he graduated from the MBA program, Jay has drawn from skills he learned in the classroom. Now in a fast-paced digital industry, Jay has learned the importance of believing in himself and his abilities and voicing his opinion. He asks questions from colleagues in other departments, sees opportunities and strives to go above and beyond what his supervisors ask of him.
"This industry needs thought leaders, instead of regular employees, who can help guide future projects into success stories," Jay said. "If you are confined to the title you are given, you will stay stagnant and limit growth. The most important thing is to not underestimate yourself and what you can bring to the table."