The scope of my role will continue to evolve

Lou Perkins, Data Privacy and Governance Analyst

So how did I end up working at Compare the Market? That’s a good question and one that I’m really happy to answer as it’s not something I was actively planning at the time my journey began – however, it delivered a great and exciting outcome.

I had a job with a local family-run business and was happily establishing my role when a friend (and ex-colleague!) asked if I was interested in hearing about a Data Privacy and Governance Analyst role at Compare the Market. I replied with what was, at the time, a surprising response of ‘never say never’…

I’d heard about the company (or at least the meerkats!) and knew that they were a great local employer, so I read the job description and found myself asking lots of questions. I already had knowledge and understanding of Data Protection but was particularly interested in learning more about Data Governance and had begun using LinkedIn Learning and the ICO Website to get going. By now, I was intrigued and submitted my CV. 

Fast-forward to a fact-finding chat and an online interview, and I was offered the position – I was chuffed!

Starting a new job is always nerve-wracking and this was no different. But as I sat in the awesome Meerkat Museum waiting for my line manager to greet me, I was instantly put at ease when her opening sentence was ‘Hi Lou, great to finally meet you in person, it’s been so long I feel like I want to hug you…’.

So, we did – what a welcome!

It’s been eight weeks since I joined, and I can honestly say that my feet haven’t touched the ground – but working in a hybrid way means that it’s been a great balance of WFH and being in the office.

I have been inducted into everything training and learning-wise using a combination of The Burrow (Compare the Market’s intranet!) and Teams virtual sessions. I attended a group face-to-face Q&A lunch event with the Exec Leadership team too. 

I’ve also been introduced to lots of great, super friendly and supportive people both in the office and via many meetings and events that take place on Teams and Slack… I particularly love the ‘Ask Me Anything’ channel, which makes finding out literally anything easy, and even better, nothing is a silly question to raise – it’s a brilliant concept! 

And now on to my role! This sits within the Data Governance wider remit under the Data Enablement umbrella and basically covers anything and everything relating to ‘data’ – why we need it, how we obtain it, what we use it for, how we store/delete/obfuscate it and how we keep whatever data we collect safe. To do this, we interact with many other departments including Customer Operations, Legal and Compliance, Marketing, Service Desk and many other support functions (to name just a few).

More specifically, I’ve been taking the reins of identifying any data privacy breaches from all raised incidents, classifying them accordingly and reconciling them on a monthly basis with our Legal team to ensure that any classed as ‘notifiable’ to any regularity bodies are done so within the required timescales… the pressure! I’m also involved in the resolution journey of incidents and attend applicable Post Implementation Reviews (PIR) and any Root Cause Analysis (RCA) reviews to help prevent recurrence.

As you can imagine, based on the nature of our business, there are many risk controls that we need to adhere to in order to ensure the safety of our customers and our business – and this is covered by daily, weekly and monthly checks to ensure we remain compliant. It’s part of my role to carry out these checks and to submit monthly reports detailing all the outcomes.

We’re also currently reviewing our controls to make sure they’re up to date and consider the advances made in data science and data ethics.

But I’m pleased to say that this is work in progress as I get to grips with it all… There’s so much to take in! 

And alongside it all, we’re always looking for ways to make continuous improvements to our processes to ensure we remain vigilant, compliant and current in line with law and legislation.

In summary, data, privacy and governance is a huge topic (I’ve literally skimmed the surface here!) and one that will continue to become more and more important (and stringent!) as the world’s tech stage continues to grow. In essence, it will never stand still and therefore the scope of my role will continue to evolve and adapt with it. 

I am so excited to have been given the opportunity to be involved, and I hope that when I find my feet a bit more over the coming months, I will do the role justice… Maybe check in again in a year’s time to see how things are going and progressing!


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