Our team are passionate about research that drives change and growth. Our collective expertise in health and the student market combines quantitative and qualitative market research techniques with strategic planning, branding, communications and design.
Nick Carley, Managing Director
I've been running my own businesses since my early thirties. Beginning with education and training, I moved on to enterprises in the IT, public relations and market research sectors, before establishing our current research-driven consultancy, Alterline. I love nothing more than talking clients through what makes their business tick, analysing what’s going on, thinking about what will work best for them and their customers, using evidence to influence these discussions, and coming up with a plan – to deliver quick wins and longer-term strategic outcomes.
Outside of work: When I’m not with clients and colleagues, I’m drinking coffee, dreaming of the next business idea, enjoying London’s endlessly changing streets, and putting the world to rights with my wife.
Ben Hickman, Research Director
I love a challenge and thrive on helping people to solve their big, strategic problems. I've always worked in research agencies and believe in the power of creative market research. I spend a lot of my time getting to know our clients, their organisations and their aspirations. Working with our team I help senior managers to understand their customers' lives, attitudes and experiences, translating that understanding into ideas, strategies and actions that can make a difference.
Outside of work: I'm kept on my toes by two young children and enjoy sharing in everything the world has to offer them, from ball pools to sailing, or finger paints to mountain climbs.
Beth Carley, Head of Research Impact
My background is in academic research, with an MSc and a PhD in social research, statistics and social policy from the University of Manchester. My postgraduate research employed a mixed-method approach to examine the outcomes of community empowerment policy in deprived neighbourhoods. My role as a research consultant at Alterline involves distilling the breadth of research intelligence we gather for clients into clear and concrete messages, publications, strategies and actions. This can be a formidable task, but one that is incredibly rewarding – great research speaks truths with profound reach, and can be a vehicle for growth and progress like no other.
Outside of work: I am mostly to be found drinking coffee with a book in my hand – either science fiction or something on politics, philosophy or psychology. I volunteer at Hammersmith and Fulham Mind, do yoga as often as I can, and intermittently enjoy running. My guilty pleasure is EastEnders.
Nina Copping, Head of Health
My interest in health was first ignited when studying for my first degree, in Human Sciences at the University of Oxford. Since then I have held a number of health roles in the academic and charity sectors, including as a public health researcher at the Universities of Southampton and Birmingham, Executive Director at The Medicinal Cannabis Research Foundation and Operations Director and Strategic Development Director at National Osteoporosis Society. I hold a Masters of Public Health (MPH).
I am motivated by making a positive difference, especially to health and wellbeing and am passionate about the huge difference that can be made by putting people’s needs and experience at the heart of thinking and decision-making. Having worked with Alterline as a client, I was inspired by their expertise and their commitment to turning research into action to drive real and positive change for organisations and the people they are there to serve.
Joining Alterline in April 2016 was an opportunity I couldn’t turn down and I am relishing the opportunity to work alongside clients to help them achieve their aims.
Outside of work: I enjoy the simple pleasures of tea, cake and chat. I have a partner and two children and when we’re not at home we love going on family adventures or planning the next one!
Professor Judith Burnett, Associate Consultant, Higher Education
Professor Judith Burnett is a sociologist of generations and social change, and has worked in higher education for 25 years, holding senior positions at PVC level. She has a particular focus on workforce development, student experience, and building academic strength. She has been Chair of the British Sociological Association and Trustee for eight years. She now heads Judith Burnett Consulting.
A previous Alterline client in her role as Pro Vice Chancellor at the University of Greenwich, Judith now works with us as an associate consultant, bringing her specialist expertise to higher education research projects.
Laura Hotchkiss, Research Manager
Throughout my time as a researcher I have developed an interest for all things statistical, and enjoy using a variety of methods such as correlational analysis, significance testing and audience segmentation. An example of this would be the work we did with Sheffield Hallam Student’s Union, segmenting their student population. This helped the Union to understand the needs and personalities of different groups of students in order to develop a new strategic plan. My first role in research was based around using consumer insight communities to assist in research. This, together with my background in psychology, completing the advanced certificate in market and social research practice and my experience at Alterline has given me a high capability when managing and executing research projects. As Research Manager at Alterline part of my role includes supporting other members of the research team to progress and develop in their career paths. In this I hope to promote a passion for research amongst the growing team.
Outside of work: I enjoy staying active by taking long walks with my chocolate Labrador and getting my friends to taste my home made chocolates.
Zara Lawson, Research Manager
I enjoy nothing more than getting to the bottom of what people think, why they behave as they do and how this translates into memorable customer journeys and experiences. In a project with Benenden, a healthcare mutual, we have used the evidence from their quarterly tracker to understand pinch points in members’ journeys and explore this in a deeper and systematic way through supporting qualitative work. I've honed my abilities by working with the team and recently completing my Research Masters. I love working with everyone at Alterline and getting stuck in with the new and exciting things that come along here.
Outside of work: I enjoy losing myself in a good puzzle, collecting random facts and world cinema.
Jessica Flavell , Research Manager
My curiosity for clinical science led to a first-class degree in Biomedical Science, to several years in the pharmaceutical market research sector, and the ultimate realisation that my passion lies not in molecular functions, but discovering how health fundamentally impacts people’s lives. At Alterline, I’m looking forward to delving beyond surface-level insights to answer challenging questions; and knowing that our research has a tangible benefit in the real world.
Outside of work: I organise live music events and volunteer for a global development charity. The rest of the time, you’ll find me reading, hiking, or relaxing with my two cats.
Susanna Jenkins , Research Executive
I first became interested in studying human behaviour during my degree in psychology and my interest in research was cemented when I completed my Masters in health psychology. I moved to market research because it allows me to use my interests to make measurable improvements to the lives of both patients and students, and give a voice to those who often go unheard. I am excited by the prospect of applying my quantitative and qualitative skills to a wide range of projects with Alterline.
Outside of work: I spend my time enjoying the music and food scene in Manchester or trying to keep up with my kitten at home!
Neesha Patel, Solutions Lead
I’m a passionate and driven individual and I take a positive and energetic approach to all the challenges I’m presented. My customer-centric mindset, alongside my scientific background brings an individualistic and realistic style to research and innovation.
Throughout an eleven-year career working within Personal Care I have undertaken several types of roles. Working within strong, collaborative teams has highlighted the value of teamwork- in trusting, appreciating and respecting one another’s skills and experience.
Outside of work I like watching Formula 1 races or the cricket, either live, or on TV with a big cup of tea.
Paul Ryan, Marketing Manager
I completed by Professional Diploma in Marketing in 2013 and I am a Chartered Marketer and a member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing. I’ve been working in marketing for over 15 years, but originally left university with a Physics Degree. This means that data, analysis and insight are always at the route of our marketing strategies and tactics.
I am responsible for all marketing activities within Alterline, including external communications (both traditional media and digital media). My role is a mix of both strategy and hands on application.
Outside of work you’ll find me performing in a local musical, watching a live show, cooking or baking something.
Adelaide Chitanda, Research Assistant
My interest in research stems from my degree in Criminology, in which I acquired a solid foundation of research. I was able to expand on my degree knowledge during my masters in which I continued with Criminology with social statistics.
What motivates me is the idea of positively impacting the lives of others through research, as well as exploring and examining different aspects of society. During my short time at Alterline I have had the opportunity to contribute towards research within higher education and healthcare. Furthermore, I have also had the opportunity to further develop my research skills and understanding in a practical manner.
Outside of work: Outside of research I enjoy taking part in yoga, meditation and cooking for friends and family.
Ashleigh Lewis, Research Assistant
Having recently graduated from Manchester Metropolitan University, I am thrilled to join the Alterline team and to applying my skills and knowledge in a work setting. As market research assistant I analyse set data, contribute to client report content, help to recruit for interviews and much more. I am excited to start working more closely with our clients as my time here progresses.
Outside of work I spend a lot of time with my family and during the summer months I like to get out onto the walking trails of the lake district or visit the many UK theme parks.