Sometimes a new report comes along just at the right time. Since our previous blog  Automation – but not at the expense of proven research methodologies the McKinsey Global Institute published a great report about ‘Harnessing automation for a future that works

Why does QuenchTec exist? The answer is to empower marketers to apply agile and automated insight processes for faster and better decision-making.

Harnessing automation for a future that works

This report from McKinsey is the most comprehensive report I have seen about the impact automation can and will have at a macro- as well as micro- level. Every business leader, university faculty, as well as policy maker should read this report.

As automation is shaking up the status quo of our industry and will re-shape the ecosystem of market research providers. I encourage the leaders of our industry to study this report and question to what extent they are ready to embrace the new reality:

  • Automation to raise productivity growth globally by 0.8 to 1.4 percent annually
  • Half the activities in the global economy have the potential to be automated by adapting currently demonstrated technology
  • Collection and processing of data are amongst the activities most susceptible to automation

Look at this graph and grasp the scale of change our industry is facing

Data Collection and Data Processing are – after predictable physical activities – the most susceptible activities to be automated. Over 60% of these activities can be automated by adapting currently demonstrated technology. Imagine how big this can and will go at the current rate of innovation!

Even a CEO’s job can be automated

It is estimated that about 25 percent of a CEO’s work could potentially be automated, primarily such tasks as analysing reports and data to inform decisions, reviewing status reports and so on. Again an area where our industry plays a strong part.

So why have we not seen our industry embracing these opportunities sooner? I am concluding this to be for 3 main reasons:

  • Quality concerns. Automation still seems often to be associated with the ‘cheap, quick and dirty’ way of doing research on a DIY basis. We already addressed this issue in our last blog post
  • Outsourcing to countries with lower wage rates constrains the adoption of innovation. Research and fieldwork agencies have outsourced tasks and processes with high technical potential to be automated to countries with lower wages instead of driving the innovation agenda.
  • Lack of Market Research domain expertise in available tech solutions. Most of the required technologies have not been designed for Market Researchers. As a result, many have tried to adjust these technologies it was not designed for best use. Apart from sharp innovators like ZappiStore the tech solutions have not been designed with a researcher’s mind, hence the successful adoption rate has been limited to specific tasks, instead of redesigning entire research processes through automation.

Make us all more human

The latter point is exactly the reason why QuenchTec exists: to empower marketers to apply agile and automated insight processes for faster and better decision-making.

QuenchTec encodes the deep tech and research domain expertise of its people into powerful and easy to use applications. These tools enable marketers to conduct research at the speed of the business, focus on generating insights that shape business decisions and not waste time and efforts on processes.

If through our work we can – using the words of the mentioned McKinsey report – “make us all more human” we should be even more inspired to change our industry for the better.