Why we’ve partnered with WiD UK 2019

N Brown is proud to be the headline sponsor of Women in Data’s Twenty in Data & Technology 2019 campaign. Data is at the heart of our business and we’re upskilling more of our colleagues in Data Science, from a mind set and technical point of view, so that the use of data is embedded throughout the business to allow us to serve our customers better than ever before. We are proud of our diverse and inclusive workforce and are delighted to be partnering with Women in Data this year to champion the fantastic women in our business driving our data strategy.

Name: Dr Mary Guettel

Position: Lead Data Scientist, N Brown

Expertise: Designing solutions for data-driven decision making; building and fostering a data community and training in both technical and mindset aspects of Data Science

Education: MA Mathematics, The University of Edinburgh; PhD Numerical Analysis, The University of Manchester

Almost all computational methods we use in Data Science are powered by Linear Algebra algorithms, developed by Numerical Analysts. My PhD research was concerned with the design and performance analysis of new algorithms for computing matrix functions – a concept which generalises functions such as the exponential to matrices. While this involved mainly theoretical research in Mathematics, I was intrigued by the value these ideas can generate in a commercial setting.

One of the applications of my work was in the modelling of interactions in large social networks, which naturally led me to the position of a Data Scientist in a marketing agency. I was lucky enough to be involved in the end-to-end process of creating solutions for a wide range of clients across the UK and Europe. This allowed me to appreciate the skill and art of transforming raw mathematical results into actions which touch people’s lives.

My current role is Lead Data Scientist at N Brown. My team and I are responsible for the delivery of complex data science projects increasing Marketing efficiency and accelerating Product innovation. One of my high priorities is creating a buzzing Data community at N Brown. We are on a journey of democratising data and embedding a truly data-first mindset throughout the entire organisation. While this is not without its challenges, I get great reward from partnering with colleagues from all business areas in discovering new and more efficient data-driven ways. Another exciting aspect of my role is managing collaborations with universities throughout the UK, organising regular Data meetups, and inspiring and training the next generation of Data Scientists.

Name: Charlotte Perrins

Position: Data Scientist

Expertise: Delivering insights through the use of data to support business decisions

Education: Statistics, Mathematics, Further Mathematics A-Level, Level 4 Data Analyst apprenticeship

My Data Analyst apprenticeship at N Brown kickstarted my career in data in 2017, quenching my thirst for knowledge and propelling me into the world of digital retail and Data Analytics. From beginning my career as a Customer Insight Analyst apprentice, to now holding a Data Science role within a centralised Data Division here at N Brown, it has always been my purpose in this organisation to contribute to helping our customers look and feel amazing through the use of data, an example of this being producing bespoke customer segmentations to improve targeting through marketing campaigns and other means.

I am passionate about knowledge sharing between colleagues and feel that it is incredibly important to upskill others, be it through investing in apprenticeships or internships for example, to feed the ever-growing need for data professionals within business. I’m proud to call myself a Woman in Data, in what can stereotypically be considered a predominantly male profession, and fulfilling my desired career path of becoming a Data Scientist aged just 21, in such a highly sought-out occupation.

Name: Helen Bollington

Job Title: Analytical Business Partner

Education: BSc (Hon’s) Psychology, Chartered Institute of Marketing Professional Post Graduate Diploma in Marketing

Expertise: Partnering to the JD Williams, Fashion World and Ambrose Wilson Brand teams requires strong interpersonal skills, the ability to transform a business question into a data brief to deliver actionable insight and the ability to communicate complex analysis in a simple way. Along with my Business Partnering responsibilities I am also the Lead analyst on CRM and Loyalty Programmes and I led the customer analysis on the Digital Transformation Project.

After graduating with a Psychology degree, I started my career as a Marketing Co-ordinator at the Co-op, where I furthered my studies, undertaking the CIM Professional Post Graduate Diploma in Marketing.

As a Psychology Graduate working in a Marketing Department, with a keen interest in consumer behaviour, I naturally fell into the role of analysing customer and market trends. This led to my next role within the Co-op’s Travel Division, managing the customer research and insight plan across the Travel Group.

In 2011 I joined N Brown Group’s Customer Insight team. Working in such a well-established analytics team has given me the opportunity to work across various specialisms, including customer, product, trading and digital analytics, for both UK and International brands.

My current role as an Analytical Business Partner, involves working closely with the marketing team to lead and deliver short-term tactical analysis and long-term strategic insight projects that align to the team’s goals and objectives.

With the vast amount of data available to us, and the need to keep up with advances in technology, I am continuing to develop my skills in the area of analytics having been selected to join N Brown’s first data fellowship programme working towards a BCS Diploma in Data Analysis.

“Data-driven decisions will become paramount to success and growth. This shift will also see the evolution of ethical commitments to the use of data.”

How N Brown see the data landscape changing in the UK in the next 5 years

The next 5 years will see the data spotlight shifting from technology to people. Democratisation of data is emerging as a global trend. Data Analytics and Data Science tools are more easily available than ever before, however there is a shortage of people with the right skillset in the UK. Data-driven decisions will become paramount to success and growth. This shift will also see the evolution of ethical commitments to the use of data.

About N Brown Group

N Brown is a top 10 UK clothing & footwear digital retailer. We are size inclusive, focusing on the needs of the underserved customer groups – size 20+ and age 50+. We offer an extensive range of products, predominantly clothing, footwear and homewares, and our Financial Services proposition allows customers to spread the cost of shopping with us. We are headquartered in Manchester where we design, source and create our product offer, and we employ over 2,400 people across the UK.