Director of Portfolio Analytics
Frannie Richert is the Director of Portfolio Analytics at ACES in Carmel, Indiana. She joined ACES’ Settlements group in a temporary position in 2012 and was hired into a full-time position in 2013. In late 2013, Frannie joined ACES’ Portfolio Modeling team.
Thinking back to when she first started with the company, Frannie immediately mentions how important having great mentors was to her success. She recalls, “When I started at ACES, I didn’t really have a strong grasp on what the company was doing or why we were doing it. I’m really fortunate that I found people willing to take me under their wing. For example, when I moved from Settlements to Portfolio Modeling, I had been with the company less than a year. I did not think I had any qualifications for the position, but I had people around me that knew my background, saw things in me that I didn’t see in myself, advocated for me, and encouraged me to push myself.” She says that throughout her career, she has frequently sought advice from experts in the company to give her guidance.
Frannie’s quest to continually improve is evident in her new role as Director of Portfolio Analytics, where she oversees ACES’ portfolio performance reporting (PPR). “The PPR group currently produces daily, weekly, and monthly reports that are intended to track performance, highlight impacts of decisions made, and help Members, Customers, and our staff make more informed operational decisions,” says Frannie. “We live in a world where you can pick up your phone and see what purchases you made, what your account balance is, etc. One of our goals is to be able to provide something similar to our Members, Customers, and staff in the future,” she adds.
Frannie also recently decided to go back to school to obtain a degree in computer science. While attending Indiana University, Frannie says she did not know what she wanted to do from a career perspective. She began college as a music major, and ultimately ended up with a degree in mathematics. Frannie notes that most people at ACES that go back to school pursue an MBA. She states, “Everyone is going to need to be more technical. It’s the world we live in, and it’s not going away. An MBA is great, and definitely may be something I pursue in the future, but a foundation in computer science aligns more with what I want to be doing and what I feel will enable me to provide greater value to ACES and our Members and Customers.”
Frannie adds that she enjoys programming and finds it to be extremely useful in her role at ACES. “I began learning to program in R when I was in the Portfolio Modeling group. When working with large data sets like the PPR data, it is generally much more efficient to create analysis using this data in R than in Excel. In many ways, learning R helped to create a natural transition for me to the PPR team,” says Frannie. She adds, “I recognize there are areas of improvement with our PPR reports, such as method of delivery, increasing efficiency and user-friendliness of the tool, as well as improvements and additions to the performance metrics and trend analysis we currently perform. I am excited about the changes my team has on the horizon to improve the PPR reports, and am confident that these changes will be beneficial to our Members, Customers, and staff.
If a new position and pursuing a new degree were not enough, Frannie has also taken on a leadership role as Vice President of Education in ACES’ recently formed Toastmasters Club. Frannie says that participating in Toastmasters and serving as a club officer have helped her not only with public speaking, but leadership, as well. “I’ve never been a part of a club with this much structure. We meet weekly, and the club officers put in a lot of work to ensure the club’s success. I think the club and all members have made significant professional improvements in the short amount of time we’ve been holding meetings, and that has been inspiring to see,” she states.
With the challenges of her professional life, Frannie makes an attempt to relax and recharge when she has time. “I’m very introverted anyway, but right now, my ideal weekend involves having as much low-key downtime as possible. When I’m home, I’m so relieved if I can just relax, play with my cat Zella, or knit a pair socks,” says Frannie. “Fortunately, I have people in my life that encourage me to get out and have fun so I don’t turn into a total hermit,” she chuckles.
When asked if she has any advice for new ACES employees, she emphasizes the importance of having good mentors and putting in the effort to learn and improve. “A mentor can be invaluable, but you can’t rely on others for advancement. You have to put in hard work, be a subject matter expert, and make people trust you as the subject matter expert,” she says. “The best advice I can give is to find something you love to do and find people in the company doing those things. It’s important to figure out what will make you successful within your team, but you also need to talk to people in other departments to develop a more holistic understanding of the complexities of the industry and our company,” she adds.
Frannie’s undeniable commitment to excellence and continual improvement make her an ideal ACES employee.