Instinctive Racing
Jun 03, 2020

Making data dreams come true

Satyajeet Datre, data scientist at Genpact, tells us how he makes numbers tell a winning story for Envision Virgin Racing

Statistician Satyajeet Datre describes the experience of being part of the Genpact and Envision Virgin Racing partnership a "dream come true."

Envision Virgin Racing is a founding team in the Formula E championship, the world's first all-electric, single-seater, international racing series. Envision Virgin Racing is working with Genpact to connect people, processes, data, and knowledge to make fast, accurate race-day decisions.

According to Satyajeet, what makes this relationship different from others is that it's a true partnership. For Satyajeet, working closely with the end-users of the program he is building means he's developing an in-depth understanding of the world of racing and engineering, which helps him appreciate and respond to the team's priorities.

By combining this knowledge of electric motorsport with his expertise in artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), he's been able to suggest enhancements before he's been officially presented with a problem.

A calculated decision

Satyajeet's role is to analyze hundreds of gigabytes of data from the drivers' simulator runs ahead of each race, examining speed, regeneration energy, power, and more. The insights feed into drivers Sam Bird and Robin Frijns' race strategies. Satyajeet uses this data to showcase the unique styles of each driver and helps them learn from each other's performances for the crucial 45 minutes (plus one lap) of a race.

Satyajeet was attracted to the field of statistics while he was at college. "Although it's an extended part of math, I was impressed by how little infrastructure is required to implement analytics and the massive return on investment you could get from it," he says.

He joined Genpact in 2018, having found the company's focus on people, global presence, and list of clients particularly alluring. He was excited by the possibilities that joining the company promised. Having worked in industries as diverse as retail, banking and finance, and telecommunications, he has added the sports industry to the list.

Satyajeet says that it's a high like no other to have drivers like Sam Bird and Robin Frijns look at his analysis and make it part of their driving strategy, and then celebrate wins with them. "To be able to use my data skills to get Sam and Robin onto the podium is incredibly exciting."

Three important traits of a data scientist

Satyajeet believes that a full-stack data scientist needs three things:

  1. An understanding of statistical algorithms 
  2. Fluency in the tools to write the algorithms 
  3. Knowledge of the industry and how it operates to create analyses that make sense to even a layperson 

An essential part of his role is to generate a graphical representation of his data analysis that can be understood by someone who is not well versed in reading numbers. He says that this skill of transforming data into a visual story has been among the most important things he has learned while at Genpact. He uses this ability to communicate insights in his work with other clients too. "Data visualization can easily be used to address a huge number of other business challenges," Satyajeet says.

Promoting the green dream

Satyajeet is proud to be associated with the Formula E, the world's fastest-growing platform for electric motorsport. His work helps generate greater interest in the green-tech industry and the ability to create a more sustainable planet for us all. Outside of work, he supports a local NGO that brings more trees and greenery to urban areas, demonstrating that we can all make a difference in the world we live in. And it shows that winning the race against climate change isn't restricted to our dreams. It's well within our grasp if we act.

About the author

Simon Fellowes

Simon Fellowes

Genpact trackside reporter

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