Market Research Response Rates

Initial report of the BHBIA Response Rate Task Force

The BHBIA Response Rate Task Force is delighted to announce that you can now download our full, Board approved report: Reversing the decline in HCP participation. This report reveals the immediate threat that dwindling HCP participation poses to the quality and validity of our findings. We need to act now to ensure the future credibility of our work, and to restore HCPs’ faith in our professionalism.

The report’s recommendations are the culmination of many months work and based on BHBIA-sponsored qualitative and quantitative research amongst HCPs – including active, lapsed, and non-participants.

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Overview of the findings

Healthcare market research is becoming slower, costlier and less credible as a result of an ongoing decline in the response of health professionals (HCPs) to our invitations to take part.

This threatens the quality and sustainability of healthcare market research. If we can re-engage with HCPs now, by addressing their concerns and showing them the value of their contributions, they will participate more often and encourage others to follow suit. The BHBIA Response Rate Task Force has undertaken qualitative and quantitative research to establish what is holding HCPs back, and what we must do.

It’s not about how much we pay them. What really matters is how we show that we value them, their time, and their expertise.

The frustration is with “screening”. HCPs say it’s too long and stringent. Fixing it heads the top five changes we must make:

Target more effectively, tighten the control of screening questions, be flexible with quotas, and collaborate before fieldwork, to stop wasting HCPs’ time and improve data qualit.

To stop participants feeling they have been misled, or treated like a commodity.

Not being bored or confused will help participants to engage more, and give better quality input.

Being paid late or not at all is a real issue. Putting this right is fundamental to treating HCPs with professionalism and respect.

To enable more HCPs to participate, and demonstrate that we care about them.

You can see the specific actions needed to achieve these, along with other recommended changes, in Key Findings and Recommendations and the summary chart on page 12 of the report.

Time for change

We have already acted, via a collaboration with the BHBIA and EphMRA Fieldwork Forums, on “Screener Design & Best Practice” guidance originated by that group. This highly practical document is in tune with our recommendations.

Please act too by reading this report, sharing its messages, and making the essential changes now.

  • The future of business intelligence depends on us taking action. We have already started adopting
    innovative ways of designing studies to encourage greater participation.

    Paul Ward

    Head of Business Operations & Excellence Sanofi Genzyme

  • This is a good piece of analysis by the BHBIA but it would be easy for the recommendations to sit on
    a shelf if not taken up by the membership. At AbbVie we have included a reference to the study in
    our RFP form and asked agencies to outline how they are addressing issues raised in the report.
    Agencies responses will influence our decision making.

    Steve Johnstone

    Head of Customer Insights AbbVie

  • We held an internal management meeting to review the report. This led to the development of a
    process that pays honoraria on a weekly basis. The benefits were immediate. Our response rate
    increased and the number of help desk inquiries were reduced.

    Jerry Arbittier

    CEO SurveyHealthCare (SHC)

  • We have run a full agency briefing on the key principles outlined in the report and are asking PDs to
    challenge clients re screener length, best practice, as necessary. We are also collecting feedback on
    HCP / respondent engagement on every study (qual or quant) as part of the DG or QNR template
    and plan to review results quarterly to feed into planning and respond on a timely basis.

    Rachel Medcalf

    Managing Director Adelphi Research