Image of Angry Bird game

Will anything replace PowerPoint soon? (a forecast from 2011 revisited)

Posted by Ray Poynter, 29 August 2018. Until 2012 I used to write a blog on Typepad and recently I have been tidying it up so that the blog can be deleted. The post below was originally posted on 30 July 2011 – back in the days when Angry Birds was all the rage. I thought I would re-post this blog now to help emphasise how little has changed and how far we are from having a new paradigm for reporting. “Will anything replace PowerPoint soon? Posted by Ray Poynter, 30 July, 2011. It is hard to imagine anything replacing PowerPoint in the foreseeable future. There are some key elements that a system for delivering results and insights has to have to be a standard, including: Available technology, the system needs to be able to produce PDF files and a file format that can be widely read by clients (e.g. Excel, Word, or PowerPoint 1997-2003), or WMV. The standard deliverable must not need to access the Internet, the intranet, or supporting files. The standard deliverable needs to be static, so that different clients see the same view, this rules out deliverables like What-if models, GapMinder, and interactive tables. The standard […]

Image of digits

How many significant digits should you display in your presentation?

Posted by Ray Poynter, 27 August 2018 Too many digits can obscure the story being communicated by numbers. Let’s consider a simple example from a trip to your gym and its hi-tech weighing machine. Perhaps the machine says that your weight is 101.7865 kilograms and that it should be 82 kilograms. The story is that you are about 20 kilograms too heavy. To see the story you need to focus on comparing 102 kilograms with 82, not 101.7865 with 82. If your presentation or report displays too many digits you will obscure the story you are trying to communicate. The choice about the right number of digits to display is the choice about how many significant digits to display – the topic of this post. Digits Obscure – Example 1 Consider the table below, which is extracted from the ITU (International Telecommunication Union) and shows how many mobile phones there were in each of the countries displayed, from 2010 to 2017, per 100 people. If you click on the data tables they get bigger. The data shows four decimal places and is not very easy for most humans to quickly review. This data is not friendly for the analyst looking […]

AMSRS Conference 2018

The excitement of the new and the best of the old – AMSRS Annual Conference 2018

Last week I had the honour to attend the Australian AMSRS Annual Conference in Melbourne, and once again it was a great event, leaving my head full of new ideas, and my batteries re-charged with a love for market research and insights. The success of the AMSRS conference was built on four key pillars: The people, starting with Leslea Clements and Elissa Molloy, extending to the wider AMSRS team (staff, board members, volunteers etc), and the programme committee. The excitement of the new, in particular the way the invited speakers made a point of pushing the boundaries of what we mean by market research and asking questions about where next? The best of the old, AMSRS makes plenty of space available in its programme for social research, methodology papers, case studies, and initiatives such as the better surveys project – ensuring that the core skills and assets of market research are retained and enhanced. The social side, AMSRS dinners are legendary, blending a great chance to meet people and simple, unadulterated fun. For me the key highlights were: WIRE – Women in Research. On the evening before the conference proper WIRE organised an event chaired by Erica van Lieven and […]

Front cover of Skills and Training Report

Market Research Skills and Training Study 2018 Report

Posted by Ray Poynter Sue York, 8 August 2018 Below is the Executive Summary of our Market Research Skills and Training Study 2018 Report. You can download the full report by clicking here. Executive Summary Market research is a knowledge-based industry, its key asset is people – software comes and goes, techniques evolve, but if the future of market research is to be secured, it will be on the strength of its people to add value, and importantly, to add value that non-researchers cannot. To ensure that value-added future, market research needs to develop its people, and a key part of that process in training, to build the competence of the people who make up the research industry. However, this report suggests that too little training is happening. The authors believe that if market research and the insights profession is to prosper in the upcoming world of big data, automation, and artificial intelligence, this must change, and we will outline some of the key steps needed to achieve that. This report is based on a study conducted globally in April to June 2018, with 1108 market researchers and insight professionals, and builds on our Market Research Knowledge Benchmarking Study 2017. […]