Jim Hoover

Making an impact with analytics

Travel has been a constant in Jim Hoover’s life. Born in Gainesville to parents who both attended the University of Florida, his family moved frequently before settling outside of Tampa in Plant City, Fla. Hoover (MBA ‘96, DBA ‘17) continued bouncing from location to location as a supply officer in the United States Navy before retiring as a Captain in 2009. In his current role as Managing Director and Client Account Lead for Accenture’s account with the Navy, he continues to travel across the U.S., bringing his expertise in decision information sciences, analytics and supply chain to serve the Navy’s needs.

Jim HooverFor Hoover, his experience in the Navy as well as his education at the University of Florida have helped set him up for success.

As a supply officer, referred to as ‘the business managers of the Navy,’ Hoover ran the day-to-day supply chain operations on a surface ship, a submarine and at an air station during his 25-year career.

“On the surface ship, I did everything from run a small convenience store to all of the accounting for the operations I ran,” he said. “That role in the Navy is really a business role.”

Hoover was able to transform his business knowledge and expand his understanding of supply chain management and decision information sciences with an MBA, his first degree from the UF Warrington College of Business.

“What I learned at [the University of] Florida, I took to the rest of my career,” he said.

Upon retirement from the Navy, Hoover joined Accenture as a senior manager, quickly moving his way up to managing director three years later and client lead for the Navy 18 months ago. In his role, Hoover oversees large projects like running the Navy’s enterprise resource system, building mobile apps for shipyard workers, helping the Navy become auditable (as it is set to undergo its first audit next year), as well as some work with analytics and intelligence programs.

“I’ve been with Accenture long enough to understand how it can help the Navy, and I was with the Navy for long enough to understand how it operates and how it can benefit from Accenture’s services,” he said. “That combination has been helpful for me, and I hope the Navy would say the same.”

While Hoover had initially planned to pursue a doctorate after his retirement from Accenture, he was intrigued when the Warrington College of Business opened applications for its inaugural Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) class in 2014.

“When I was in the UF MBA program, I was a teaching assistant in statistics for the undergraduate students,” he said. “I really enjoyed it, and it’s been a goal to eventually teach since. When UF opened its first program in the DBA, I thought to myself, ‘Why wait? This is a program that’s not like other online degrees,’ and I thought I could swing it with my work.

“I joined the first class, and I was just amazed with the program, the professors and the quality of my colleagues in the class. They had accomplished so much, all still while working full time.”

Thanks to his DBA, Hoover has been able to accomplish two important goals – use his research and analytics knowledge in his role at Accenture and teach business analytics to his own class of Master of Accounting students at Florida Southern College this past spring.

“I’m really passionate about analytics,” he said. “If I think about the next 20 years and where the jobs are, it would be in analytics and data science. Managers of the future have to understand analytics so that they can make decisions.”