At lunchtime on 11th December, East-based ICG members held our second virtual meet-up via Zoom.
Martyn writes: the planned discussion was shelved, as the lead on the topic was unavailable – we will probably to return to it at a later meeting. There was no shortage of topics however!
Covid effects were aired, as we might expect. In particular there were reports of client requests for faster (impossible) turnrounds and also for reduced fees. But the key topic was methodology: what has changed, through necessity, these last few months, and what might stay with us afterwards, either by choice or by default. Obviously much of what would have been face-to-face pre-pandemic now happens, if at all, online. One aspect of this is the potential to return to the same set of respondents, not necessarily on the same topic – a methodology one member thought was successful enough to migrate into the post-Covid world.
A number of challenges were identified to our new ways of working. With asynchronous groups, one challenge is how to encourage all participants to ‘talk’. The answer seems to be that more time is required than might have been thought. But there is a context which is influencing this change: people are becoming more used to engaging in this manner through platforms such as WhatsApp app. It might be argued that Zoom is doing a similar job for live online groups. We are just all becoming more used to interacting in the new normal way.
The issue of incentives was discussed, with GiftPay being suggested as a good platform that can arrange payments to charities as well as retail, for instance.
Quality in survey response was then discussed. Two separate members reported incidence as high as 25% “cheaters”, with a range of behaviours to identify and counter. Echoes here of past debates around the quality of recruitment in qual. A real issue, and one that seems only to be addressed by spending time on quality control (as the providers don’t seem concerned), something that tends not to be charged back to the client.
Finally the idea of ICG debates was raised: a platform to share open discussion on topics such as those discussed here today, but with advocacy (whether you believe it or not) to ensure broad opinion is presented. Arthur agreed to talk to someone at the ICG as everyone thought this was a good idea.