FEATURE4 July 2022

Shray Agarwal – Research Hero

Features People

The Market Research Society launched the Research Heroes programme to celebrate the sector’s unsung heroes. Shray Agarwal has joined the cadre of Research Heroes 2022.

Shray Agarwal, Business Manager, Quantum Consumer Solutions


Shray is part of the business management division at Quantum Consumer Solutions, India, and has worked in the market research industry for the last nine years. Starting his career as an analyst with Evalueserve in secondary research, he later moved to qualitative and has been hooked to its dynamic and evolving nature ever since.

While working at Quantum, Shray has developed a keen interest in the business management side of things and now overlooks the financial health and operations of the Delhi office. He also services a portfolio of clients ranging from fast-moving consumer goods to alcholic beverages and telecommunications, enabling him to master the ins-and-outs of research operations and client servicing.

Shray’s mantra is “if you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading”, which motivates him to constantly come up with ways of achieving his goals and ensures Quantum’s clients receive exceptional service.

Shray was nominated for “demonstrating admirable leadership across 2021 and 2022 using both head and heart” and helping Quantum to “pivot overnight towards online methods, in a country where internet penetration is only 41%”.


What is the biggest challenge you have faced during your career?
Given we are in the business of qualitative market research, my biggest challenge has been, and still is, to come up with innovative ways to answer client questions in terms of execution. There is no one standard way of doing things and I feel this is the beauty of the challenge. It always keeps you on your toes and pushes you to think out of the box and do things differently. 

What will be the next big trend or development in the research industry, and why?
I would like to answer this question from both a research and operations perspective. I feel the next big trend in research is futureproofing a brand so that it does not lose its value in an ever-changing and dynamic market, while still winning against the competition. The second big trend would be “where a brand will get their next 100 million consumers”.  With urban markets becoming more populated globally, it is time for organisations to focus more on semi-urban and rural markets to make their mark.

From an operations standpoint, I feel we have just tasted the entrée when it comes to exploring digital means of doing fieldwork. We have not yet experienced the full might of information technology when collecting research data. Be it in the form of artificial intelligence, eye tracking, online panels, etc, there is still a lot for us to explore and implement. This is both cost effective and agile, and has the potential to change the market research industry significantly.

Who inspires you as a researcher?
There is no one answer to this. I have been a great admirer of work done by the team at Quantum. I have seen them come up with the most innovative ways of answering research questions. I have also followed the work of strategists such as Kim Albee, Sajal Kohli, Leon Pieters and Rohan Sajdeh. In my view, anyone who has helped change the face of a product or a brand is inspiring. 

View the full list of Research Heroes for 2022