Colleague Spotlight: Meet Richard Little, Analytics Team Manager

Amy Owens

Written By Amy Owens

10th August 2021

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This month our Colleague Spotlight is on Richard Little, Analytics Team Manager, who heads up our MI and analytics team. Find out more about his role within AdviserPlus and how the analytics team’s role is vital in helping our clients make better business decisions.

Can you tell us a little bit about your background and previous experience?

I’ve got over ten years in the MI and analytics industry, working for a variety of household names. Most recently, I was the Commercial Analytics Manager for non-edible products at major UK supermarket. One of the areas I analysed was toilet paper sales during the panic buying phase of the pandemic! My job was to help the traders understand the data and being embedded within the trading team rather than a team of analysts gave me great exposure to the broader considerations.

I studied History at the University of Liverpool, not a subject you would necessarily associate with analytics, but history is all about critical thinking so it’s similar. During the course, you study historiography which is when you consider what historians have written about history rather than just looking at the events themselves. This analysis can get many layers deep, you’d consider which historians had sensible views and which didn’t, and you’d pick out different pieces of information and rationale to support your argument. It’s the same with data – you’re just using numbers to pick out bits and pieces to substantiate a position.

Why did you join AdviserPlus?

First and foremost, I’m a proud Wirralian, so in terms of location it’s close to home and really handy if I need to pop into the office. I felt as though joining AdviserPlus was a good opportunity, particularly at this time because I think that one of the things to come out of the pandemic is that businesses will have to change the way they operate with more employees working from home, or remotely. As a result, they will want to transform the way they deliver HR. That, combined with the capabilities of empower®, which will allow businesses to have confidence that their people processes are being managed correctly, provides AdviserPlus with a massive opportunity to help all kinds of organisations. That’s what sold it to me really, I wanted to be a part of that.

Tell us more about your role and why analytics in HR is so key?

My role spans the data journey; so that’s everything from extracting the data from our core live systems into our data warehouses, building dashboards, reporting to clients and managing that service. The team will also analyse the data to determine what it means and, importantly, how we use that data to help our clients make better decisions.

I’ve been heavily involved in the empower® project. As a team, we’re currently building the solution out for some new and existing clients, presenting the dashboards to them, incorporating their feedback, and getting the MI and analytics element of the solution to a point that will tell the client everything they need to provide visibility, derive insight and inform their decision-making.

What’s the most satisfying part of your role?

There are two factors really. I like managing people and having a big team where it’s very much ‘we win together, and we lose together’. I also like that every day is different – depending on what I’m working on or what direction the business wants to go in, no two days are the same. It’s always been in my mind that whilst I wanted to work with numbers and data, I didn’t want to do the same thing every day for my entire career. I enjoy what I do immensely and I take great satisfaction in developing my team and helping people understand what data means. The interesting thing about working at AdviserPlus is that you’re not just working with data from one business, you’re working with data from lots of them and to be able to analyse the similarities (and differences) between them is fascinating.

Our dashboarding and benchmarking proposition within the HR world is unique. We can offer a lot of value add and insight that other businesses in this space can’t, in terms of analysis. For example, we can look at a client’s data and highlight things which they may not be aware of themselves, such as identify behaviours, learnings, and ways of working in the best areas of the business and extrapolating that out to areas that don’t perform quite as well. It makes a massive difference and can produce huge cost savings and returns in productivity.

You’ve only been here for a couple of months, but what are you enjoying most about working for AdviserPlus so far?

The people are great. AdviserPlus is an organisation that people want to work for, and they will go above and beyond for the business and its clients. You don’t get that in many places. I’m really enjoying the role itself, it’s busy and things change quickly so it keeps me on my toes.

If you weren’t working at AdviserPlus, what do you think you’d be doing?

I’m really into cycling so I’d probably want to do something in that sphere. I’m currently training to be a bike mechanic so I’m doing some of the exams towards that, learning how to strip a bike down and put it back together. I do a lot of long- distance road biking so I’d probably want to do something related to that – it’s my hobby.

And finally, can you tell us an interesting or little-known fact about yourself?

I’m a distant relation of Stan Laurel. I’m not sure how exactly, it’s fairly tenuous but it’s somewhere on my dad’s side.

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