If you’re considering buying, selling or renting a home, you’ve probably perused Zillow’s database of more than 110 million homes. Working behind the scenes to make this a seamless experience is Brandon McKinney, a business administration major at CU Denver, who has been interning as an engagement specialist with Zillow since February.
McKinney found the internship on the Experiential Learning Center’s InternLink database and scored the highly coveted position after three interviews. Even though he didn’t have a background in real estate, he thinks some other traits—like a willingness to take on new challenges—caught the attention of hiring managers. Of course a resume polished with tips from the Career Center might have helped as well.
“I’m really glad I got the opportunity,” McKinney said. “I especially enjoy the startup environment that they’ve been able to maintain. It’s a positive environment and there are a lot of options to relax and take your mind off work. Plus, the fully stocked kitchen doesn’t hurt!”
As an engagement specialist, McKinney assists the sales executives who are providing marketing solutions to real estate agents in various regions. He’s also working with Zillow’s customer relationship management (CRM) and market analysis tools. The experience is giving him invaluable software experience in a fast-paced environment, while also allowing him to grow a strong professional network.
McKinney was able to hit the ground running thanks to several of his business courses, which introduced him to some of the programs and practices he has been encountering at Zillow.
“My classes in the Business School have been very beneficial,” McKinney said. “One class I took focused on Access and Excel, which helped me learn to use those programs efficiently. My Information Systems Management course got me going with a lot of the CRM and market analysis tools which are used at Zillow. These business classes helped me gain the basic knowledge to be able to do the job.”
McKinney plans to graduate in December 2016 and hopes to pursue a career in marketing. He has enjoyed his internship at Zillow so much, he is keeping his eyes open for future opportunities with the real estate giant.
“Zillow has several aspects of the business that relate to marketing, and it has such a great atmosphere I would definitely consider working there in the future,” McKinney said.