Ryan Freeman: Improving efficiency and productivity in retail

Kohl's education benefits programs

Meet Ryan Freeman: Production Control Supervisor at Kohl’s

Ryan Freeman, a Production Control Supervisor in Kohl’s e-commerce division, consistently uses data to help inform staffing decisions and push productivity. Ryan creates forecasts and models to support his division in meeting the company’s evolving business goals and priorities. He regularly presents his findings to stakeholders, using visualization tools and slides to communicate the data.


Adapting to new tools and technology

Ryan’s previous work experiences have given him excellent proficiency in Excel, but his current  role at Kohl’s demands expertise with Google Suite, specifically with Google Sheets. Ryan found the Data Analytics program at Pathstream in Guild’s catalog, and what motivated him to take it because he prides himself on being a lifelong learner and wants to excel in his role.

“Pathstream got me excited about learning”, he said. “It has been such a solid foundation on which to build my skills.”


New data analytics skills improve efficiency

In his current role, the skills he gained from the Pathstream program have helped him significantly cut down on planning time. With these more efficient processes, Ryan has more time to spend on critical processes and procedures to truly make a difference.

 “I used to have to be at work 30 minutes before my shift started to get my planning done. Now it only takes me 10 minutes”. 

Ryan also honed his data wrangling and presentation skills and says he feels more confident presenting his findings to stakeholders.  


Lifelong learning

Ryan talked about how the Pathstream program was challenging in the best way possible, and pushed him to broaden his horizons and redefine his limits. With the program under his belt, he decided to build upon these newfound skills and take advantage of his employer’s Education Benefits by enrolling in new advanced courses to learn Python, MongoDB, and Java. He feels that his Data Analytics program prepared him well for these more advanced courses: 

“It was much easier to take advanced courses with the foundational knowledge Pathstream offered me.”

When Ryan first started working at Kohl’s, the retail chain didn’t offer an education benefits program. However, he’s since seen a big shift after they rolled out these amazing benefits. Ryan raves about the support he receives in his current educational pursuits. He is even contemplating returning to school for a full degree after completing the advanced courses he is taking!

“I took the Pathstream program, and now am taking courses with the University of Minnesota.  I’m contemplating maybe going back to school and getting a degree! At this point, I’ve been taking classes for two years, so I might as well get a degree.”


Opening doors to opportunity

Thanks to the program, Ryan was able to network and build bridges with colleagues in his organization. 

“I was able to help create organizational knowledge of SQL by connecting with systems analysts in my organization about what I was learning in Pathstream.”


He spoke about how he feels so much more confident in his role and is looking forward to applying to a Data Analyst role in the next year or two where he can continue to use his new skills and learn.

“I am a person who likes to learn and constantly strengthen my skills. Pathstream helped me open future opportunities, open more doors for myself”.


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