FEATURE7 July 2023

Tanya Squires – research hero

Features People

The Market Research Society launched the Research Heroes programme to celebrate the sector’s unsung heroes. Tanya Squires has joined the cadre of Research Heroes 2023.


Tanya Squires, TS Research Assistant

Tanya has been supporting independent market researchers with project management and admin tasks since 2017. With 12 years’ research experience prior to starting her own business and solid project management skills honed clientside, she removes the pain points from projects and gives her clients their time and focus back. 

Tany was nominated because "she will put her hand to any task and do it with absolute diligence, keeping multiple research projects on track and to time all while having a smile on her face. This award is perfect for her, as she is often in the background of projects, but her work is what supports everything to get done without a glitch. I'm sure many others in the ICG and elsewhere would also attest to how brilliant she is." 

What is the biggest challenge you have faced during your career? 

My biggest challenge, back in 2017, was working out exactly where I’d fit within the research industry. Having worked as a researcher for over a decade, I was ready to leave behind the shackles of employment and branch out on my own – but I had no idea what that would look like. My heart has always belonged to qual, but the travel and lifestyle didn’t appeal to me with a young family (I didn’t foresee the massive shift to online that was just around the corner!) 

My business, TS Research Assistant, was co-created with my very first clients, as I developed my offering based on what they needed support with. It was also built around an insight. Independent researchers are under huge time pressures and often need support with admin, project management, and time-consuming but important tasks. Yet it takes a solid understanding of research to do these tasks well, and briefing someone not fluent in ‘all things research’ brings its own set of challenges. This is where I realised that I could help. 

What will be the next big trend or development in the research industry, and why? 

Perhaps I should ask ChatGPT to formulate an answer to this one…?! But paradigm-shifting advances in AI aside, I will answer this question based on personal observations of projects I’ve been working on (and my gut feeling is that these observations could relate to bigger trends). I’m seeing a shift towards research becoming both broader/more inclusive and deeper/more niche, in terms of who we’re actually speaking to. And I’m seeing research and recruitment methods evolving to meet this. 

Who inspires you as a researcher?  

Honestly, I’m inspired by working day-to-day with independent researchers and field agency owners – people who are proactive and innovative, and who come up with creative solutions to every hurdle and curveball thrown their way. Neither research nor self-employment are for the faint-hearted, but the intersection of the two is a great place to be and continually pushes me to level up. 

View the full list of Research Heroes 2023