Every day, my inbox is bombarded with requests for feedback. Most requests I honor because I am a data nerd and I know there's some fellow data nerd behind the scenes who really needs the insight for their business case. Also because my husband is a PhD and we spent several years of our marriage dedicated to quantitative assessments - I have seen tears spilled over empty questionnaires.
Many survey requests I archive for later because I want to see how our partners and competitors collect data and use it to shape their programs. But mostly, I just think it is incredibly important to share your opinion when asked. (I could write a whole different blog on when NOT express your opinion, mostly from first-hand experience.)
This is a list of the top 7 reasons why I think people should respond to SIG surveys in particular and surveys in general.
SIG Member Input Drives Content Creation
As sourcing professionals, you are really good at understanding the value of your partnerships and ensuring you realize that value -- that is why we have strategic sourcing, negotiations, performance measurement and things like vested sourcing. Providing your input to SIG about what you need from our partnership is critical to us delivering the content, the speakers, the tools, the connections and the awareness you expect from us. You are paying for it, so let us know how we can serve you!
Expressing Your Opinion Is Good for Mental Health
Get it off your chest, share your concerns and join a community of people who are facing the same problems as you. We know your leadership, your customers and your team are all leaning on you to make 2021 successful. Telling someone about this can be extremely helpful, because it means someone is in your corner listening.
If You Don't Vote, You Can't Complain
This is a lesson I learned from my parents. If you don't take advantage of the tools provided, then your future complaints will often be immediately dismissed. It seems like such an obvious lesson, but then again, the average voter turnout for U.S. presidential elections over the last century has hovered between 50% and 60%.
Your Partners are Listening and Developing
I have the privilege of participating in the call for presentations and speakers for SIG's Global Summits. I conduct this massive call for presentations twice per year and have done so since 2011. Every single time, the first thing the speakers (buy-side and their advisors, consultants and providers) ask me is, "What does the audience need to hear?" Your insight is not only valuable to them, but of course, this is what helps drive research and development. The next big procurement innovation could happen because you decided to sit down and respond to a survey.
Assessment Starts with Reflection
The process of responding to a questionnaire can help you reflect on what's important to you. Thinking about what truly matters can help you better prioritize your needs and goals. Anyone who has ever sourced anything knows this. You find yourself in a scoping call with a vendor and all your critical stakeholders, and suddenly you find the project requirements changing because the vendor started asking pointed and detailed questions (sometimes even the same ones you asked!). Within a matter of moments your stakeholders are shifting their objectives, goals and timelines.
Benchmarking, Benchmarking, Benchmarking
Sometimes even the way a question in a survey is worded, or the questions themselves, provide clues to the market landscape or to industry trends. Data gathering, insight seeking, benchmarking -- these are all familiar tools to sourcing practitioners, especially those of us who like to learn about new subjects, new categories and new professional services.
More and more firms are starting to understand how difficult it is to balance work and life now. But that doesn't mean the desire to understand your needs has gone away. So, look for the incentives and don't be afraid to take advantage of them. Here at SIG, we offer respondents who are anxious about purchasing and conduct policies to donate their incentives -- such as a gift card for responding to a survey -- to a charity of their choice.
So, I hope that when the next survey pops up in your inbox, you will take a few minutes and appreciate the importance of responding. This data nerd appreciates it!
SIG is hosting a survey (with an incentive!) to find out what matters most to SIG members. Please take some time to contribute your thoughts and opinions so we can better serve you! The first 100 qualified respondents will be eligible to receive a $5 Starbucks gift card (or similar) or a donation to an approved SIG charity.
Mary Zampino is the Vice President – Content, Research & Analytics at SIG and has over 20 years of experience in information technology and over 15 years of experience in sourcing. Prior to joining SIG, Mary worked at Enporion, where she was responsible for the analysis, configuration, execution and award evaluation for over one thousand sourcing events, across a diverse range of direct and indirect categories. Mary is committed to customer service and considers information sharing and usability the top priorities for any project or organization. Mary holds a Bachelor's Degree in Information Science from the Florida State University and has completed certifications in Health Information Technology and Requirements Gathering.