New GI Insight Development Director aims to drive the integration of online and offline customer data

GI Insight, the data marketing, customer insight and loyalty company, has confirmed the appointment of senior software executive Kevin Van Heerden as Development Director at a time when the firm is making significant advances in the integration of real-time data with other offline and online information. Van Heerden has been brought in to oversee the development, data operations and customer service teams, with the aim of further advancing the company’s Single Customer View (SCV) database capabilities, driving new approaches to data integration, information management and consumer insight.

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Van Heerden has a strong background in both management and senior technology roles, having worked at a range of companies including Xbis, Rimo3, Camwood and Semper Software. He has extensive experience in the development of analytics applications, business intelligence software, integrated mobile apps and other data-related enterprise programmes.

His appointment as Development Director comes at a time when GI Insight is enhancing its omni-channel customer insight capability with the integration of new sister company Cognesia’s real-time digital analytics capability into its array of services. The addition of live tracking and analysis of customers’ online interactions enables GI Insight to bolster the comprehensive offline SCV it can generate for companies aiming to build loyalty and react to customers more effectively.

Andy Wood, Managing Director of GI Insight, comments: “Kevin has got excellent experience, expertise, gravitas and the dynamic drive needed to move the business forward. His deep technical knowledge and extensive background in developing software and database solutions, including business intelligence and real time analytics platforms, has given him the ability to communicate fairly sophisticated technical concepts in a straightforward way – and bring clients along with him in that journey. His experience enables him to quickly grasp clients’ needs and address those.”

Van Heerden notes GI Insight’s technological potential and reach in the loyalty marketplace was a major draw when it came to joining the company: “I’m really excited about the fact that GI Insight are running some of the biggest loyalty programmes. The complexity and challenges they face daily and the way in which they solve them was intriguing. There is a lot of great knowledge within the business that could become intellectual property, providing opportunities for the development of new technological solutions for marketers.”

Van Heerden adds: “From a strategy perspective GI Insight is now ahead of the marketplace in terms where it is going with the use of real-time data and mobile. It is really a new frontier and very few companies other than GI Insight are in a position to leverage a loyalty programme in that space. We can be really proactive in this area and I’ll work with my team to stay ahead of the game. The company is also right for the market in terms of the expected EU-driven data protection legislation, which is going to start dictating that you can’t communicate directly with consumers if they don’t opt in. Our loyalty programme experience will be instrumental to helping clients in this area.”

Wood concludes: “This is a great time for Kevin to be joining the business. His appointment enhances the stature of our team and he will play a critical role in the development of strategy as the business evolves. Every team needs to continue to grow and Kevin will lead the way in boosting efficiency, jump-starting new technology developments and improving ways of working.”