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Traditionally, large organizations have both a research organization and a customer analytics organization that are distinct from each other and often in entirely different chains of command. I have seen many organizations where there is tension between these two organizations. Neither seems willing to acknowledge the value of the other and this causes opportunities to be missed. Today, organizations need to challenge the old assumption that these groups should be separated.

In the context of this blog, I am discussing research in the sense of traditional primary research that covers satisfaction surveys, focus groups, etc. I am not referring to research in the sense of medical or technical research such as drug testing, circuit board design, etc. I am also focusing on the customer analytics team since that is the team that deals directly with other types of customer information. While operations or supply chain analytics teams could also benefit from the combining of the groups, the biggest impact will be in the customer realm.

Defining the Differences

Traditional research groups focus on interacting with customers and prospects to understand what they think and say about an organization’s products, brand, and reputation. Whether an in-depth online survey or a lengthy focus group discussion, research …

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