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  • Gill Tomlinson, Director – Data and Analytics, Three UK

Gill Tomlinson, Director – Data and Analytics, Three UK

How is your organisation using data and analytics to support the corporate vision and purpose?


Our organisation makes extensive use of data and analytics. As a telecommunications company with a responsibility to ensure we maintain a stable and high-performant network, we use data and analytics to drive diagnostic analysis of the network and accelerate the remediation of fault resolution. Across the business, we utilise data and analytics daily to drive strategic decisioning, run our business and understand our customers’ needs in order to provide viable product propositions, drive campaigns and support revenue growth.

Looking forward to 2021, what are your expectations for data and analytics within your organisation?


We aim to become a digital and data-driven business and see data and analytics playing a critical role in supporting 5G and IOT propositions in the future. 


Is data for good part of your personal or business agenda for 2021? If so, what form will it take?


Data for good is part of part of both my personal and business agenda. Within the business, utilising data to inform decision-making around driving our aspirations for diversity and inclusion.

What has been your path to power?


I have worked in data and analytics globally for over 17 years across multiple organisations and countries. I started my career in the credit bureau industry and went on to support the development of data credit bureaux across the Middle East and Africa. 


I moved to the UK just short of 10 years ago and worked on major data and analytic programmes for Deloitte. I then took on multiple interim roles as head of change for credit risk data at Royal Bank of Scotland UK, head of data quality at Lloyds Commercial Bank UK, then went on to fulfil the roles of chief data officer at Whitbread UK, chief data officer of RSA and director of data and analytics at Three UK. 


I have been part of the DataIQ 100 for several years, was chosen as one of the 20 in data and tech in 2018 by The Female Lead and Women in Data. I was also awarded chief data officer of the year by IPQC in 2017. I am a keynote speaker and multiple conferences across the UK. 


What is the proudest achievement of your career to date?


Being chosen as one of the 20 in data and tech in 2018 by The Female Lead and Women in Data.


Tell us about a career goal or a purpose for your organisation that you are pursuing?


I am currently driving the implementation of data assets with the purpose of building a very strong data proposition to support our data monetisation objectives.

How closely aligned to the business are data and analytics both within your own organisation and at an industry level? What helps to bring the two closer together?


We have worked very hard to align the business with the data and analytics function, both in changing the operating model to integrate data skills and capability within business functions and through collaboration on key data, BI and analytics projects to drive business outcomes. I think alignment on the measurement of value of the capabilities is critical to close the gap. 


What is your view on how to develop a data culture in an organisation, building out data literacy and creating a data-first mindset?


I think organisations need to adopt a multi-pronged approach. I think the operating model of the data and analytics organisation needs to change to ensure that the right skills and capability is integrated into the functions of the business and not separated from them. I think innovation workshops, training sessions, apprenticeship and graduate schemes are really useful to drive data literacy. 


Self-service and the enablement thereof, plus ensuring you take a top-down approach, are critical. The sponsorship and endorsement of the board and ongoing co-ordination with the board to ensure they are data-driven is also critical to success.  

Gill Tomlinson
has been included in:
  • 100 Brands 2021 (EMEA)