NEWS9 July 2021

Survey launches on freelance research practices

News UK

UK – The ICG (Independent Consultants Group) has launched a survey to explore freelance research hiring practices as it looks to define best practice for working with freelancers.

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The survey is open for four weeks to those who hire freelancers and freelance researchers themselves, both qualitative and quantitative.

The research will explore the interactions organisations have with freelancers when they work with them and vice-versa. It includes questions about agreeing a fee, briefing, invoicing and dealing with cancellations and scope changes.  

Following the survey, the ICG will publish a summary of the results and a set of best practice guidelines for freelance researchers and organisations to use. 

Tom Woodnutt, founder of Feeling Mutual, is leading the initiative and co-designed the survey with Yolo Comms founder Nik Harta. 

Woodnutt said: “There is a surprisingly high level of uncertainty on what best practice means when it comes to hiring freelance researchers. On the ICG forum we hear many stories of poor practice that puts undue pressure on freelancers – especially post-pandemic. 

“As both a hirer and occasional freelancer myself, I’ve seen both sides. Over the last few months we’ve been discussing the topic with ICG members and beyond, and have developed a draft set of best practice guidelines. We are asking both hirers and freelancers across the research industry to complete the survey, so we can validate our thinking with a robust enough sample and then share the results and best practice guidelines.”