Q…It’s Better than P But Too Much for R
Note from Alisa: This blog entry is written by none other than the amazing Nicole Armstrong, my fantastic and highly-experienced colleague. She said that she would introduce herself, but I know that she won’t do herself justice so I’m usurping the intro to say that she’s fantastic and we wouldn’t be here without her. No, Nicole, I’m not just saying that so you write more blog entries (although I hope that is an unintended consequence). So, read Nicole’s review and then tell her how much you want to hear more about her perspective!
With all the new tools and technology out there to help us researchers serve our clients better, it can get a bit overwhelming to decide which ones you really need, and which ones will provide the most value. Here at Harvest, Alisa is annoyingly obsessed with streamlining our process and likes to test anything that promises simplification.
Recently, we’ve taken the opportunity to try out Q Research Software. If you’re not familiar, Q is an all-in-one analysis software designed specifically for market research. During our demo, Alisa and I were doing happy dances, giving each other the thumbs up, and generally freaking out in excitement over the processes it can automate and the time it can save. Most importantly, we were excited to finally find a solution that would automate the tabs to PPT chart cut and paste scheme. We couldn’t wait to dive in! We would save so much time! We would be efficient! Happy dance! Happy dance!
So, we got a trial, and then reality hit. Hello, learning curve! Duh. I mean, what fancy specialized-for-your-industry software have you ever been able to use straight “out of the box”? In my experience, none. Happy dance put on hold.
Yes, Q is powerful and has tons of amazing features; yes, they offer a training session with a real person to walk you through how to use it; yes, there’s interactive online training; yes, they have a responsive help desk; and yes, there’s even a huge library of resources to help you understand how to use the product. However, when you’re in the weeds trying to meet ever-tightening client deadlines, time to take advantage of those awesome resources is hard to find. We were feeling deflated and starting to think maybe it wasn’t the silver bullet we (and many other market researchers) had been looking for.
Then, we had a break in quantitative reporting – a little breathing room to begin to explore Q in greater depth. We were able to poke around and take the time to learn how to do some of the things that could ultimately save us some time. We also learned a few tips and tricks from others who were using it. Q started to be exciting again!
Since then, we have continued to learn and apply our newfound knowledge to projects and add value for our clients. We have plenty more learning to do, but we are feeling hopeful that Q will only continue to prove its value as we use it more. If you’re looking for an all-encompassing analysis solution, Q is a great option, but be warned – there is a LOT of ramping up time required for Q to provide any real benefits over what you might currently be using and familiar with. The bottom line? Q is an excellent choice IF you have the time to invest in learning how to use all of its fancy features.