On the trail of the Analyst Relations Professional of the Year

IIAR AR Professional of the YearIf you have ever had enough money to pay for the services of an AR agency, no doubt you will have run a survey or two to evaluate how well your AR practice is performing. However these surveys – by their nature – remain proprietary information and the industry has never looked itself in the face as a whole to see what it looks like across the board.
Enter the IIAR with the idea to run a survey of all the analysts across the globe, to see what they think en masse of the Analyst Relations community. The idea is simple: for the past few years we have run a survey among AR professionals to find out who is the favourite analyst of the year, but now the tables are turned and it’s the analysts’ turn to vote on who is the favourite AR professional of the year…

No drum roll yet – we’re not ready to announce the winner just now, but we will very soon – promise!
First of all, down to basics: “What is this survey?” we hear you say, “How did you do it?” and “Really, why bother?!” The answer is simple and threefold, we wanted to:

  • Raise the profile of AR as a profession
  • Recognise those individuals who stand out from the crowd, as seen by the analysts themselves
  • Evaluate how AR professionals are performing as a group, and identify those areas which need more attention

Easy, right? Wrong. Running a survey is no easy business, and analysts are not easily coerced into freely sharing opinions. We’d like to thank those who were willing to give their time to read and re-read the draft survey questions, provide their inputs – often long and detailed – which were very much appreciated and carefully considered. We are very grateful to them for sharing their views so openly and freely. We would also like to thank all the analysts who took part – all 320 of you!

But back to your questions. First of all, the “what”. This is a survey of all industry analysts from all firms across the globe, designed to ask their opinion of AR across a number of criteria for the year 2013. It was conducted by the IIAR and kindly sponsored by ARInsights, using their database of nearly 7,000 analysts to ensure a sufficient sample size. We’d like to thank Crystal Golightly (@crystalARI) and ARInsights’s management, as well as Matt Heath (@IDC_EMEA) at IDC and Claire Booty (@ClaireBooty) at Ovum who ensured we had maximum turnout from the major analyst firms. Unfortunately, Gartner and Forrester were not as cooperative as their counterparts and we regret to say that the number of analyst responses from these firms is sadly lacking.

We looked at the analysts’ perception of how AR professionals are performing as a whole according to the ‘Three Rs’ of AR:

  • Responsiveness
  • Relationship
  • Results

Both individuals and top megavendors are rated along those three criteria, which came from detailed interviews with several analysts. Indeed according to our analysis, those Three Rs of AR are the key determinant of the quality of the relationship and performance of AR professionals and AR programmes.

As for the results, well they yielded a few surprises, as well as confirming a few things we already intuitively knew.

 

STOP PRESS –  IIAR members can register now for the announcement IIAR Webinar on the 11th April – SAVE THE DATE!

IIAR Webinars are free to attend for all IIAR Members, a good reason for joining the IIAR. For non-members there is a fee of $25/£15 (pay here) that is redeemable against IIAR Membership over the next 12 months. Join the IIAR via the form on this page, new members are always welcome !

 

Laura Brownrigg (LinkedIn)
Ludovic Leforestier (LinkedIn, @lludovic)

 

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14 Responses to On the trail of the Analyst Relations Professional of the Year

  1. Stephen England Friday 28th March 2014 at 16:46 #

    KCG has just completed and is about to announce its Analyst Choice awards – based on Analyst Perception Audit scores across 20+ categories. Over 300 analyst’s votes including VERY high turn out from Gartner and Forrester as well as many point players, IDC and others. See our site for more info on finalists and methodology.

  2. Stephen England Saturday 29th March 2014 at 12:42 #

    Did anyone get prior Gartner approval for the questionnaire before sending it to their analysts? Failure to do so will lead to a “ban”. Forrester are less strict but less organized, and that can suppress response.

    • Ludovic Leforestier Saturday 29th March 2014 at 13:39 #

      Yes, we did Steve.

      • Stephen England Saturday 29th March 2014 at 14:43 #

        So why the poor response? We get almost 100% response from Gartner.

        • Ludovic Leforestier Thursday 3rd April 2014 at 12:46 #

          Maybe because we’re truly a independent industry association?

  3. irwin lazar Tuesday 1st April 2014 at 03:11 #

    Hi there, I don’t believe anyone at Nemertes Research received your survey, how do we gain inclusion in your list? Thank you.

    • Laura Brownrigg Wednesday 2nd April 2014 at 15:44 #

      Hi Irwin, the AR Insights team helped us send out the survey to their entire database so I don’t know why the Nemertes Research team didn’t receive the survey. I can see your firm and a number of analysts in the database, so it must have been a technical glitch. We’ll check with AR Insights to see if they can find out what went wrong. Hopefully next time around you will all receive it.

  4. Stephen England Thursday 3rd April 2014 at 23:26 #

    Everyone can view the voting analyst lists for 2013 in these reports by category – the analyst lists are there for all to see.

    http://www.knowledgecap.com/KCG/MAPDDS

    The methodology is here:

    http://www.knowledgecap.com/KCG/ACAMeth

    and the finalist companies lists here:

    http://www.knowledgecap.com/KCG/ACA14Fin

    The awards will be announced April 24th at KCG Connects in Austin.

  5. Duncan Chapple Monday 7th April 2014 at 21:29 #

    I think that the IIAR approach has a big advantage if it’s using the ARchitect list: it’s going to be a more representative sample. Gartner doesn’t employ half the analysts in the industry and, while I appreciate that KCG’s clients will have asked for it to be over-represented, unless you use some sort of sampling approach then there’s always the chance that just by over-focussing on one analyst firm you can game the whole methodology. I would love to be able to compare the results of the two approaches and ask professionals which they think is more representative.

    • Stephen England Monday 7th April 2014 at 22:41 #

      KCG also uses the ARchitect list through our partnership with AR Insights. But we are focused on buy side influencers and RAS analysts (not vendor consultants and journo-analysts) of which Gartner and Forrester do employ close to half globally. I was specifically reacting to the notes that response from Gartner and Forrester were almost non existent. Such a sample cannot give a representative result of a program’s value – surely? Our respondents and finalists are already public.

  6. Duncan Chapple Friday 11th April 2014 at 17:43 #

    Stephen, the IIAR survey had around 25 responses from Gartner. That’s exactly the same as your survey. Are you saying that your survey is not gathering enough responses from Gartner?

    I think you’ll find that your real objection isn’t how many people from Gartner and Forrester participated, but how many other people did.

    • Stephen England Friday 11th April 2014 at 18:37 #

      Actually Duncan, our response count from Gartner was almost 120 analysts – and we are very happy with the response from all the smaller firms too. Forrester was a bit light last year but IDC was well represented. We actually design, contact, analyze and publish the entire list broken down into 20+ sub categories. We are in year 11 of this program.

      My “real objection” is the difficulty getting similar specific information on the IIAR sample.

      BTW – None of this surprises me if the survey was not Gartner approved. All of ours are.

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