Astronaut, or Insights Director? Oliver talks to us about his career

Like many of us, Oliver wanted to be an Astronaut. A keen runner and chess player, he’s now Director of the Innovations and Development team in Europanel, based in London. We stole some of his time to find out what’s kept him at Kantar for nineteen years.
26 May 2023
A man with black rimmed glasses looking at the camera, with a blue shirt on. He has short brown hair.

International Consumer Insight Director, UK

Talk us through your time at Kantar so far. 
I joined Kantar nineteen years ago (it was called TNS at the time), purely because I wanted to both move to London and have a change of industry. Kantar had a vacancy that ticked both these boxes, looked interesting and required my skill set. 

Now, I’m Director of the Innovations & Development team in Europanel. We provide multi-country panel data solutions, such as reporting tools and data sets, to FMCG clients. Many people seem surprised that I work for a market research company, but don’t spend all day cold calling or standing on a high street with a clipboard!

Why are insights and data so important for marketing? How does the data we collect impact our clients and consumers on the street?

In this time of increasing uncertainty our clients rely on our data to inform them of what is happening in their markets. Insights help them decide where best to invest to achieve their goals. The effect of this is that consumers should find themselves better informed of a greater range of products that meet their specific needs.

What been the highlight of your time here?
Maybe not a highlight, but I do feel very proud when I see systems my team and I have deployed that have become integral to the business. Unofficially, my highlight is making some really amazing friends!

Is there an international side to your role?
I work exclusively on international projects, and despite working for Europanel, not just European ones either! I’ve contributed to projects commissioned by all the big FMCG manufacturers, plus many more as well as some international retailers too.

As you would expect from an international market research company, we are a very multicultural team and with that comes a very open friendly culture. Because many of our employees are new to the UK, strong friendship and support groups have been built within the company.

Are there opportunities to work flexibly?
I do take advantage of the flexible working. As a father of two, being able to flex my time, increase my holiday and work from home is invaluable when the kids are not in school.

What do you love about working here?
The people. I also love that I can get to the office without a car or public transport – I cycle.