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MRX Lab Podcast

Exploring new & novel conversations from the fringes of the insights industry.

Episode #3 - Software Devs vs Insight Pros: Who Shapes Research Experiences?

In this episode of the MRX Lab podcast from FlexMR, we explore the relationship between insight professionals and software developers. In an era where online researchers are 2.3x more likely to use an online survey than an offline alternative, it’s important to examine the skills, relationships and effects that development teams are having on the industry. And more important still is not just understanding the impact, but actively brining both skill sets together in order to deliver better research software and better results for our clients.

To research this piece, we spoke with software developers who work in the insights industry. That duel perspective brings a new angle to the debate and represents a voice that is hugely influential in designing modern research platforms, but is rarely given much consideration.


There’s no real answer to the core question posed in this podcast. Who shapes modern research experiences? The truth is both researchers and developers have a hand in the process. But who should influence what, and how are the two groups working together – is something that is still worth exploration and discussion.

Perhaps one of the most surprising findings that came out of talking to insights industry software developers was the recognition that both groups have the same vision and responsibilities as insights professionals, but just use a different set of skills to achieve that goal. That’s encouraging. However, it also addresses the core challenge that sits between us achieving even better software as an industry. It lies in the phrase “different skills.” Of course, both groups will have expertise in different areas. But there still needs to exist some degree of overlap in terms of shared language and shared understanding if we are to all to aim for the same goal.

Towards the end of this podcast, we pose a set of four questions. Because this is a conversation that we all need to engage in. Whether client side or agency side, it’s near impossible to work in the insights industry today without using, in some capacity, software to enable data collection, analysis or reporting. So we should all engage in this discussion and look to ways we can achieve better research outcomes, and help remove the constraints of technology.

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