ITA Spotlight: Nielsen Global Connect
Tuesday, January 21, 2020
Posted by: Abbey Kwiat
Ted Bach, SVP Technology and Ton An Huynh, Global Product Leader , Nielsen Global Connect
In 25 words or less, what is Nielsen Connect all about?
We collect purchase data from the billions of global transactions that consumers make and use it to help brands and retailers understand and optimize their decision making and business strategies.
What problem do you solve and how do you solve it better than the competition?
Our data and analytics help clients predict and activitate sales to drive growth in their businesses. We are most known for our coverage and measurement, but we’re increasing our portfolio investment in predictive analytics.
One of the ways that we stand out from our competition is that we have the most expansive coverage globally. We have the largest portfolio of services that go beyond just measurement—we give insights to improve business.
What are your primary goals for Nielsen Connect?
Right now, our primary goal is expansion: adding more clients in the U.S. and other markets globally. We are focused on our open Nielsen Connect platform, powered by Microsoft Azure, which allows clients to integrate diverse data sets so they can measure areas of growth, predict consumer behavior and decide what action to take next.
Where do you see Nielsen Connect in two years? Five? Ten?
Beyond expansion, our biggest area of focus is on the applications on our platform; going beyond predictive analytics to provide meaningful recommendations to our clients, through expanded use of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML).
What risks or issues do you foresee in your industry’s near future?
The pace of change is increasing in the whole marketplace, as our clients grapple with a quickly evolving landscape of how to engage with and distribute goods to their customers. We have to evolve with the landscape and ensure we deliver the same value from a coverage perspective, while also providing them with more innovative ways to drive efficiency.
What are the biggest challenges you face as you scale your business?
We have such a large portfolio of clients, and the business maturity of each client varies greatly. We are constantly challenged to navigate the complexities of helping our clients innovate and keep pace while they are in various stages of maturity.
What’s the biggest obstacle you’ve faced as an organization, and how did you overcome it?
Globally we have many competitors across different aspects of our business, so there’s always going to be competitive pressure. But we’ve proven over nearly a century that we are resilient, with a long-term strategy that will win.
What motivates your employees to come to work every day?
From a technology perspective, we’re working with leading, cutting-edge solutions in the cloud and an extremely modern architecture. That excites people because they get to learn every day and operate on the forefront of innovation.
What makes Nielsen Connect stand out?
The global nature of the business and our position in the marketplace. Also, our vast portfolio of clients compared to our competitors.
What’s the No. 1 thing on your to-do list?
Scale to additional clients and markets. Also to increasingly leverage the power and potential of the Nielsen Connect platform, including building new products and applications for other markets.
What do you do to encourage constant growth and change for your employees?
It’s one of the pillars of our employee experience. We truly invest in our people, encourage them to take ownership of their career, explore new opportunities and provide ways for them to do that within the organization.
This is a large, global company. There are a lot of opportunities to move or switch roles—it’s almost like you can work in a different company, but without actually leaving the company. Early in your career you can learn in different areas and find out what you like to do. In the next phase [of your career], you can build skills: you can move across functions, from technical to commercial, or even corporate. We’ve seen many people move across different dimensions.
What are the top reasons employees would say they love working for Nielsen Connect?
The people—that’s the first answer associates give, that they like the people they work with.
Also, the growth opportunities that we talked about earlier: whether it’s from a function, geography or technical aspect, there’s always something new and a wide variety of opportunities for our associates.