Explore our blog for insightful articles, research revelations, and creative ideas that inspire.

The best tool for the job. We pride ourselves on building innovative approaches…


A few months ago we were involved in a ‘Linked In’ discussion with a passenger who had been handed a paper questionnaire whilst travelling by train.

This passenger questioned the use of a physical questionnaire, suggesting that it would have been better to use a digital version. This is a very logical question and one we ask ourselves constantly. The only issue is that this passenger, like most, had no digital presence for the rail journey they were making. As such there was no way of contacting them, or their fellow passengers, in any way that is comparable in terms of a representative coverage as is possible using this ‘old fashioned’ methodology.

At Future Thinking Gemseek we pride ourselves on building innovative approaches to providing data intelligence, however, this is always done by selecting the BEST way of doing this. It may be that we don’t need primary research and can get to the answers through data science techniques being applied to secondary data. It may be issuing huge numbers of short questionnaires after every customer interaction, reporting in real time via an online portal that contacts the key stakeholders to let them know what their scores are and even closes the loop allowing feedback to individuals. It may be that the best way of answering a client’s questions is to conduct two focus groups on a rainy evening in Hull.

And of course, the BEST way may well be utilising a number of methodologies/ techniques to form the ideal mix of insight.

It is great that the passenger questioned the methodology utilised in the on-train survey. It is important that this is what we do all the time – we don’t just use that method because we always have. It is also important that our clients question whether they are doing something because it is the best way to get the insight they need. Not just are they repeating an old methodology when a new one is better but are they going for a bright, shiny new methodology just because it is bright and shiny and new, not because it is actually the best way to get the understanding they need.

I guess the conclusion I am trying to come to is that a tool is just a tool. It is irrelevant. What is important is not if its new or old, not if it is being used for the first or the three hundred and sixty third time, what matters is does it tell you something that is going to help your business be better tomorrow than it is today.

So at Future Thinking Gemseek, we develop nice new shiny solutions but pride ourselves more on understanding your business, your industry and your challenges. Finding the solutions to what keep you awake at night through a greater understanding of your customers/ consumers/ shoppers/ passengers etc, helping make you a better version of yourselves.

For more information on our work in across the services sector please contact Steve King at

Share this article:TweetShareEmailPrint