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Introduction

This Privacy Notice covers the handling of personal data by Advantage Group International Inc. and its affiliated entities, collectively known as “Advantage” and referred to as “we”, “our” and “us” in this document.

We understand that you care about the privacy of your information, and we take that seriously. This Privacy Notice describes our policies and practices regarding collecting and using your personal data and establishes your privacy rights.

Contact Details

Advantage Group International Inc.

Address: 40 University Avenue, Suite 903, Toronto, ON M5J 1T1, Canada

Email address: [email protected]

ICO registration: ZB414373 – The Advantage Group International, Inc

Changes to This Privacy Notice

Our privacy policy is regularly reviewed.

We recognize that information privacy is an ongoing responsibility. Advantage reserves the right to modify this Privacy Notice at any time without notice to reflect changes in legal or regulatory obligations or how we deal with personal information.

We will notify you if we make any material changes by posting the revised notice on our websites. Your continued use of the websites, and continued provision of personal data to us will be subject to the terms of the current Privacy Notice.

This version was last updated on November 08, 2022. Previous versions can be obtained by contacting us.

Who We Are

Advantage Group is the leading advisor in business-to-business engagement solutions globally. Trusted by many of the world’s leading brands, Advantage Report has become the gold standard for improving performance between suppliers and retailers in over 40 countries. Established in 1988 and headquartered in Canada, Advantage Group acts as an integral link between supplier and retail partners in the world of fast-moving consumer goods. We use data, feedback and strategy consulting to illuminate opportunities for mutual growth, strengthen relationships and provide invaluable insight, helping people and organizations work better together.

What We Do

Advantage Group helps people and organizations work better together. We provide the gift of feedback and, through insight, drive positive behaviour change and business growth. In the world of fast-moving consumer goods, we act as an integral link between suppliers and retailers. Advantage uses data, feedback and strategy consulting to illuminate opportunities for mutual growth, strengthen relationships and provide invaluable insight. In over 40 countries, Advantage creates better insight, better business and better lives. 

How We Collect and Use (Process) Personal Data

  1. Visitors to our website
  2. Clients and business contacts
  3. Research participants
  4. Marketing
  5. Recruitment

1. Visitors to Our Website

When you visit our website, we use third-party services to collect standard internet log information and details of visitor behaviour patterns. We do this to determine the number of visitors to various parts of the website. When you complete a contact form on our website or use the email for enquiries, we use the information you gave to respond appropriately.

1.1 Social Media Features

Our website may include social media features, such as LinkedIn or YouTube buttons and widgets, or other interactive mini-programs on our sites. These features may collect your Internet Protocol (IP) address, which pages you visit on our site, and set a cookie to enable the feature to function correctly. Social media features and widgets are hosted by a third party or directly on our website. Your interactions with these features are governed by the privacy policy and other policies of the companies providing them.

1.2 External Websites

Our website may provide links to third-party websites. We do not control and are not responsible for the content or practices of these websites. Providing such links does not constitute our endorsement of these other websites, their content, their owners, or their practices. This Privacy Notice does not apply to these other websites. Those websites are subject to any privacy and other policies they may have.

2. Clients and Business Contacts

Our clients are businesses and their representatives who commission us to provide our services.

2.1 Information We Hold About Our Clients and Suppliers

We may hold the following information about our clients and suppliers:

  • Contact details
    • Name, job title, business address, business email address, business phone numbers, mobile phone numbers
  • Usernames and login information for our platforms
  • Usage reports from these platforms
  • Transaction data, including details about services you have purchased from us or provided to us
  • Financial data such as bank details
  • Photographs, professional profiles, and areas of expertise for client profiles
  • Videos and photographs of our clients that were taken at any of the events they attended
  • Client testimonials for our services

We may receive personal data from our clients about other individuals, such as their colleagues, while providing our services. This information is used solely for such purposes and is handled per client instructions.

This data is collected and processed to fulfil our contract and provide you with our services. We also use your data to contact you for our research analytics.

3. Research Participants

We conduct research and analytics to provide a range of services and solutions. For this purpose, we undertake research that may include online surveys, telephone interviews, or focus groups.

If you are an employee/owner of an organization that we believe may have an interest in our services or those of our clients, then we may hold personal information about you, such as your name, job title, work telephone number and email address. We capture this data from the public domain by speaking to someone at your company or by directly communicating with you.

3.1 Information We Collect About Our Research Subjects

We may collect and hold the following information about you:

  • Contact details
    • Name, job title, employer name, contact email, phone number, region, country of residence
  • Specific attributes to aid our research and reporting of results, such as confirmation about purchasing and using a particular product or service.
  • Call records and survey responses
    • Your responses and call records are only processed in a way that does not identify any individual.

3.2 How We Collect Your Data

We may obtain information about research subjects via the following sources:

  • Our database of customers and previous research subjects
  • Publicly available information about people of interest
    • e.g. Google, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, news articles
  • Our clients who have asked us to conduct such research
  • Our approved vendors
    • They are required to obtain and provide us with an audit trail of your consent to share your personal data with us

Your email address or phone number will be used to contact you regarding your participation in our survey. If you take a survey or provide us with personally identifiable information within the survey, the following will be retained by us in case we need to contact you for a follow-up:

  • Your first and last name
  • Job title
  • Email address
  • Company name

This information will be used solely by Advantage and will not be distributed to any third party.

The responses you provide in a survey or through a follow-up interview with an identified Advantage interviewer will be used in aggregate form to provide valuable information to our clients. You will not be personally identified by your survey ratings nor through comments obtained in any follow-up interview.

Your participation in our online surveys is always voluntary and with your consent. You can choose to remove your email address from our mailing list anytime. Once it has been removed, you will no longer receive survey invitations or communications from us for that survey. To unsubscribe, please reply to your email invitation, expressing your wish to opt out.

4. Marketing Data

We hold contact details of individuals who have expressed interest in hearing from us or have engaged with us for our past services. All direct marketing activities to such individuals shall comply with relevant privacy and regulatory requirements.

4.1 How Your Personal Data Is Collected

You may give us your personal data by:

  • Completing any form on Advantage’s website or subscribing to newsletters or e-bulletins
  • Completing a form attached to corporate communications, direct marketing campaigns, or whitepaper
  • Registering for our webinar, virtual events or in-person events
  • Taking part in an event sponsored by Advantage or Advantage’s client
  • Joining any of our forums, or client and leadership groups
  • Procuring any products or services from Advantage
  • Signing up to blog or submit a comment
  • Interacting with our account managers, sales team, or business development team
  • Participating in research interviews

Data may also be gathered from the public domain, such as:

  • LinkedIn
  • Google
  • Your website

4.2 How We Use Your Data

We may use your data to form a view of what we think you want or need or what may interest you. We only use the data you provide us directly for this purpose, along with the aggregated data provided by our analytics partners.

We strive to provide you with choices regarding specific personal data uses, particularly marketing and advertising.

We send electronic marketing, such as email marketing, to people who have previously bought or expressed interest in our services. We carry out this marketing activity based on our legitimate interests.

We will always offer a way out of receiving this marketing when you first purchase our services or products and in every marketing communication afterwards. We may send out postal marketing to grow our sales which is in our legitimate interests. You can update your marketing preferences to refrain from receiving these communications.

You may also receive marketing and events information on the email address you have made publicly available (on LinkedIn and other similar platforms) if this will be useful. You can unsubscribe from these emails if you don’t want to receive them in the future.

5. Recruitment

All the information you provide during the application process will be used to process your application and to meet legal or regulatory requirements if necessary. We will not share any information you provide during the recruitment process with third parties for marketing purposes or store any of your information outside Advantage-controlled systems.

The information you provide will be held by us securely. We will use the contact details you provide to contact you to progress your application. We will use the other information you provide to assess your suitability for the role you have applied for. We do not collect more information than we need to fulfil our stated purposes and will not retain it longer than necessary.

5.1 Application Stage

All applications are submitted via our website, through recruiters, or directly. We ask you for the following:

  • Contact details
    • Name, job title, employer name, email address, phone number, region, country of residence
  • Previous experience
    • Details of your education, work history, your interests, qualifications, and experience

This information will only be visible to Advantage employees who require it for hiring purposes. You can withdraw your application or change details by informing us in writing.

5.2 Selection Stage

We will shortlist applications for interviews. Information will be generated by the applicant and by Advantage. For example, you might complete a written test, or Advantage might take interview notes. We use this information to assess your suitability for the role. We will also conduct an identification verification and check your right to work as per local regulations before any offer letters are issued.

5.3 Length of Information Retention

If you are unsuccessful at any stage of the process, the information you have provided until that point will be archived from the date an email notification is sent to you. We retain the information generated throughout the assessment process (e.g. interview notes) for six months following the closure of the position. If you are successful in your application, we will retain your information per our Privacy Notice for Employees and Contractors.

Use of Cookies

When you visit our website, we may use ‘cookies’ to track the behaviour patterns of visitors to our website. We place a text file (a cookie) in the browser directory of an individual’s computer hard drive. A cookie is a small piece of information which stores basic information you enter into the website on your web browser. The cookie cannot be read by any website other than the one that sets up the cookie. Some browsers can be set to reject all cookies.

Please see our cookie policy here.

6. When and How We Share Your Personal Data

We may share your personal data with the following:

  • Our Marketing Team and Research Team, where we have either obtained consent or assessed that it can be processed under the legitimate interest basis.
  • Our IT service providers and cloud service providers who provide data storage, processing, backup, and retrieval services.
  • Third parties (e.g. digital marketing providers, sponsors of our events and webinars) with whom you permit us to share your contact information.

International Transfer of Data

Your personal information may be collected, transferred to, and stored by us in Canada and our offices or affiliates in other countries where we operate.

Please refer to our region-specific data processing guidelines below.

Automated Decision-Making

We do not use automated decision-making concerning your personal data.

7. Security of Your Personal Information

Advantage has strict measures to protect every aspect of your personal information. Access to all personally identifiable information is restricted and limited to a few key, identifiable personnel. Our websites and survey security are reviewed regularly.

Advantage will never ask you for private information, such as your credit card or driver’s license, as a part of our research. We use secure servers and firewalls when collecting information and protecting respondent privacy. Your profile information is highly confidential and will be used only by Advantage to email you concerning our surveys or as otherwise provided in this Privacy Notice.

We maintain physical, technical, and administrative safeguards to help protect the privacy of the data and personally identifiable information you provide. We update and test our security technology and controls on an ongoing basis. We restrict access to your data to those employees who need to know that information to provide benefits or services to you. In addition, we train our employees about the importance of confidentiality and maintaining the privacy and security of your information. We commit to taking appropriate disciplinary measures to enforce our employees’ privacy responsibilities.

We have information security policies and procedures to protect personal information from unauthorized access, alteration, disclosure, or destruction and have several layers of security measures appropriate for the type and sensitivity of the data.

8. Data Storage and Retention

We store your personal data on our servers in Canada, Australia, Belgium and the UK, on the servers of cloud-based services and IT service providers, and in physical forms in our office and at backup and archival facilities. We retain data per our data retention policy and regulatory data retention requirements.

For more information on where and how long your personal data is stored and your rights of erasure and portability, please contact us at [email protected].

9. Your Rights and How to Access and Manage Your Personal Information

  • EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), UK GDPR and UK Data Protection Act

We confirm that Advantage complies fully with the above regulations for individuals based in the EU, European Economic Area (EEA) and the UK. If you wish to verify that Advantage is processing or accessing your personal data, please contact us at [email protected].

You have the right to request the correction of inaccurate information, deletion of information, and to instruct us to stop processing your information. If you’d like more information or to make a request, please contact us at [email protected].

We verify that any data transfer outside the EEA or UK is subject to EU or UK adequacy requirements, standard contractual clauses, or UK international data transfer agreements. We may transfer data necessary for the performance of a contract between us. When data needs to be transferred to a country or a region where these measures do not apply, we will seek explicit consent from you before making such a transfer.

  • Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA)

For individuals based in Canada, we confirm that Advantage complies fully with PIPEDA and all other Canadian data protection regulations, such as Personal Information Protection Act (PIPA) BC, PIPA Alberta and the Quebec Privacy Act.

Please contact us at [email protected] if you wish to:

  • Confirm that Advantage is processing your personal data or accessing personal data we may have about you
  • Request a correction of inaccurate information, deletion of information, and withdraw your consent (you have the right to do this at any time)
  • Learn more information, ask questions about this Privacy Notice and how we process personal data or make a complaint

Email is not a 100% secure medium; you should know this when providing us with personal information.

If you are unhappy with our response, you have the right to complain to the supervisory authority.

Individuals based in Canada, please contact:

Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada

30, Victoria Street

Gatineau, Quebec, K1A 1H3

Individuals based in the UK, please contact:

Information Commissioner’s Office

Wycliffe House Water Ln, Wilmslow SK9 5AF, UK

Other territories:

We comply with applicable data protection regulations for individuals based in other territories. Please contact us for further information.

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