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Data is important, but it's even more crucial how we interpret it: Interview with Eva Vandenberge

min. read

In today's digitalised world, every business can access an incredible amount of data. However, the real value of data comes from interpreting it through data analytics and using its insights to make strategic decisions.

Boobook’s unique approach to data and business insights starts with its competent and skilful analytics team but also relies immensely on business savviness. Numbers on their own, nor fancy analytics mean much. Knowing what to look for and connecting it back to the business issue is as important as data science. One of our senior data science consultants, Frederik De Boeck, talked about this in our previous article.

Meet another team member: Eva Vandenberge, one of our consultants making the "bridge" between data analytics and business, translating complex data language into clear business insights.

With her 18 years of experience in marketing, communication, market research, and data-driven business consultancy, Eva is a perfect combination of a marketer with an analytical brain. She specialises in data insights and business consultancy with a high level of storytelling and data visualisation expertise.

Eva is in direct communication with clients, but she also works on conveying the research, getting the insights, and being fully involved with the projects.

"We have a powerful bond with our clients because they trust our collaborative approach and professional consultancy," says Eva.

She joined boobook three years ago as an Insights and Client services director, but her career as a business consultant and data wizard didn't come overnight. With her Master's Degree in Communication Sciences degree, she worked as a communication specialist at De Lijn for seven years. Later on, at Ipsos (Synovate), she was a research manager focused on loyalty research and conveying customer experience surveys. After nine years at Ipsos, she was ready for a new chapter. Luckily, an ex-colleague meddled in.

"Frederik (De Boeck) was my ex-colleague at Ipsos who started working at boobook, and he was very enthusiastic about me joining the team. I scheduled a meeting with Nicole, and she offered me the job after a few days. I didn't have any second thoughts because I liked Nicole's attitude and philosophy. I could easily relate to the values that boobook stands for."

Challenges are the best ways to grow and learn

As a natural problem-solver, Eva looks at challenges as a regular part of work and life.

"If I face any issue, I say, okay, this is a problem, how can I solve it? I don't stress because I understand challenges are the best ways to grow and learn." 

eva vandenberge

This mindset and determined attitude fit perfectly with the boobook's approach and framework: "At boobook, we tend to keep asking questions until we reach the very end of the road. Our work is based on in-depth business analysis and strategic thinking. We need to understand the business questions and get to the core of the client company and its processes."

Speaking of challenges, 2020 proved to be one of the most difficult years for everyone. Pandemic impacted our lives profoundly, but there is always a silver lining. 

For boobook, the calm period was beneficial for reassessing how the company operated. "At the beginning of the pandemic, it was quiet as many projects were on stand-by. We took that time to discuss the processes within the company and how to restructure our team. Some decisions were hard to take, but this time was precious because it helped us find focus again," says Eva.

Businesses of the future will be more data analytics oriented

Even though she already has a wide range of skills and considerable market research experience, Eva is a firm believer that there is always room for improvement and new skills. "That's the beauty of this type of work; there are always new things to know. It's never a dull moment, and I like it because it keeps me agile and curious," she confesses.

Nobody can tell the future, but Eva believes it's looking bright for data analytics and data science.

"Data can help companies make decisions about their customers by understanding who the customers are, what they do and especially why.

As more and more data is available, I expect companies' mindset to evolve and become more 'data analytics oriented' from the start of every new development.

Companies will think about existing data and reporting tools, the ideal measurement framework and KPI's they want to track, privacy rules, etc. This way, companies will be able to get the most out of their data, and struggle less with all kinds of different systems that are not designed with data analysis in mind," Eva explains.

Companies need to think big regarding analytics, and by thinking big, I mean long-term planning, moving forward step by step. I believe there are exciting times ahead for data analytics.

Eva believes that data translators will be even more in demand. "I think the need for data analysts will increase, especially if they are business savvy. AI won't replace a human brain to ask the right questions, translate the data into insights and create an impactful strategy. Data scientists and consultants know how to connect the dots, and enable companies to communicate better and more efficiently within the organisations and with their customers," she concludes.

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