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NEWS13 March 2018

Intelligence Capital: the changing face of insight

Impact 2018 News UK

UK – The Market Research Society has launched an important new initiative called ‘Intelligence Capital’ during Impact Week, with the goal of putting insight at the organisational top table.

“There are countless pages written about managing financial capital and the importance of human capital,” says MRS CEO Jane Frost. “But the thesis we have is that a company needs a third set of capital, which is intelligence capital, and it’s this third leg which makes any company stable enough to grow.”

The MRS Delphi Group thinktank will oversee a programme of work designed to create an intelligence capital business model, assisted by the board of clients brought together to drive the creation of Impact Week, which will become a sector client council in recognition of the fundamental role of insight within growth-minded organisations.

However, Frost is also keen to engage with a cross-section of the “brilliant minds” attending this year’s conference on the basis that richer and deeper thinking will ultimately lead to a better model. How, for instance, might a corporate insight function leverage a focus on intelligence capital to strengthen its hand?

A key aim going forward is to present intelligence capital as a driver for growth and a core requirement, alongside financial and human capital, for any successful organisation. Frost hopes the programme will help build a greater dialogue between the insight and finance functions in organisations and a greater appreciation of how insight can capitalise on data and new technology opportunities.

“In a sense, this is about stopping talking about research as a process,” says Frost. “It’s talking about it as an outcome, as a sound basis for growth in a modern company.” 

MRS Delphi Group will publish a report on intelligence capital before the end of Q3 to be followed by a dedicated conference on the subject before the end of the year.

One objective is to use intelligence capital as a marketing tool to persuade finance and other stakeholders that an investment in data and analytics – and indeed in insight more widely – will give organisations a significant advantage over their competitors. The intention is also to underline that more and better horizontal collaboration with functions such as finance leads to powerful insight that is more usable and adoptable across an organisation.

“Technology and the big data it produces has changed research and insights massively in recent years and the change will only accelerate,” says Will Galgey, CEO, Kantar TNS UK. “At Kantar we are excited about this new reality and have been actively embracing it for several years now, investing in new methodologies, technology and analytics capability.

“We passionately believe that new and deeper consumer understanding comes from using new big data sources but using them in conjunction with better, mobile driven surveys and the deep human and cultural understanding of consumers that comes from great qualitative research,” he adds.

“In our view, the skills of the great insight professional to combine these disparate sources of data and turn it into a cohesive and actionable story have never been more important. Yet great insight professionals need to push harder to put themselves front and centre of business and demonstrate the value of their work. This is why Kantar believes intelligence capital is so important and why we are proud to sponsor it.”

Watch clients including Tesco, Barclays and Diageo discuss why intelligence capital is an unmissable opportunity for the sector: https://www.mrs.org.uk/resources/intelligence-capital

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