Data and performance: MSc Strat graduate Aurélie Bergugnat’s journey to the frontline of digitization and innovation
Boston-based Aurélie Bergugnat is Chief Data Officer of Schneider Electric and is participating in the business transformation from the inside-out. We’re celebrating her career as part of the 30-year anniversary of our MSc Strategic Management, graduating in 2004.
After 14 years spent understanding every inner-working of Schneider Electric – moving across multiple departments, roles, and even continents – Aurélie now puts these rich years of insights to the ultimate impactful use in her current role as Chief Data Officer. A data enthusiast, she’s made it her mission to accompany the business in its transformation, putting innovation and insights front and center.
Learning business at HEC Paris
Passionate about performance management and all things efficiency, Aurélie aspired to pursue a career in the manufacturing industry – but not before getting her Master’s degree in Strategic Management from HEC Paris.
“I didn’t come from a business background before HEC, so the program was essential to my career in this way”, explains Aurélie.
“You learn how to think strategically and analytically, but also innovatively, every step of the way. Learning how to be innovative is really what the course is all about.”
360° business exposure: a wealth of expertise
Master’s degree in hand, after landing her first role at Renault in capital expenditures, she joined Schneider Electric in the Control and Business Performance department. A couple of years later, she moved to APC by Schneider Electric – a company providing protection against some of the leading causes of technological downtime – and started climbing the ranks: within five years, she transitioned through several different roles to eventually become CFO of one of its division.
“I experienced many different aspects of the company’s finance departments earlier in my career, moving from corporate finance to M&A integration and controlling”, she explains. “This wide exposure stood me in good stead to eventually steer the evolution of company performance as Chief Data Officer.”
Setting her up even more for this opportunity was her time spent as Executive Governance Vice-President: “it was an executive role with an overview of the company strategy deployment between operations, functions and businesses”.
Spearheading innovation at Schneider Electric
Aurélie’s 14 years of soaking up valuable insights in every nook and cranny of the business culminated in a role that she was made for: Chief Data Officer and Senior Vice-President, Global Data Hub and Performance Management.
“My teams manage all enterprise data assets”, she says. “Customer data, product data, vendor data… Through a set of governing rules that ensure best data practices from platform efficiency to data quality, we use this data to accelerate growth, improve customer satisfaction and optimize performance. To give you quick statistics for how digital our business is – almost 50% of our revenue comes from digitization: connected products, edge controls, Analytics, Software, services, Artificial Intelligence and more. So data really is one of the transformative pillars of our company.”
The domain might not be familiar to everyone, but for Aurélie and so many others in the business performance game, it is vital: “especially within the manufacturing industry, data allows us to understand and anticipate customer needs, drive digital transformation and seek new business models.”
Looking to the future, Aurélie has high hopes for Schneider Electric. “I’m passionate about business transformation and performance management, and I’ll keep on advancing these areas within the business”, she affirms. “One particular challenge is to transition the company from external acquisition – which we’ve been doing for 10 years – to end-to-end management. In doing this, all data is shared with every department – with sales, marketing, web, supply chain – so that every aspect of the business can be optimized more locally and organically.”