Spam the torpedos!

The Spam dilemma: After reading yet another negative media piece about the VET sector I raised concern with our team about morale out there in training world. We wondered what was really happening out there, how people were feeling. How confident are ‘you’ about our sector’s future?

Bad press, changing requirements, IPOs, acquisitions, aggregation, closures, VET Reform, Total VET Reporting, a New Year and USIs to boot, even saying all that is hard enough let alone dealing with it.

As a team we came up with the idea of measuring individuals’ confidence levels, aggregating the data to create an index, and then sharing it with everyone – then we would all know how ‘we’ feel. This type of survey already exist for retail and banking, however there isn’t one for the training sector, we think it is time that was changed.

A survey may seem like a strange thing to do for JWGecko unless you know our history; team gecko put media research data online for ACNielsen in New Zealand as our first project some years ago and then went to Hong Kong to work with Steve Garton and Cartoon Network on what was the largest youth survey of its kind in the Asia Pacific. The Gecko survey tool and reporting engine were multilingual and multi-character set: English, Hangal (Korean) and both simplified and tradition Chinese; a Confidence Survey for the VET sector should be easy enough – remind me I said that at some point :-)

So what is the spam dilemma?

Well the fact is that to produce an interesting Training Sector Confidence Survey we need a statistically valid sample and we don’t know 2500 VET leaders – we need to send emails to people we don’t know – we don’t like that.

So we talked the subject through at great length to establish whether there really is a fair value exchange – because, to us at least, that is the point.

What are we trying to do?

  • Provide valuable insights to VET participants
  • Improve our brand recognition

What are we trying to sell?

  • Nothing really although we would like people to think of us as good citizens in the sector.
  • We can’t sell to most RTOs since our products only currently work with three or four products many RTOs don’t use.

What do we get out of it?

  • Valuable insights into the sector – definitely, everyone does!
  • We will share these with those who complete the survey – benefit cancelled out?
    Not entirely but there is value to everyone.

What’s the harm?

  • Not much that we can think of although
  • I am SURE to get the rough end of someone’s email kahunas, life’s like that.

Overall analysis?

  • A fair value exchange for those who participate.
  • The jury is out.

In summary: When it comes down to it; we would rather be damned by someone for trying to do some good out there than sit back and do nothing.

So today we will invite, via email, some people we don’t know to participate in what we hope is an exciting and valuable new VET initiative – you be the judge of whether it was worth it or not.


John Wooding
VET Enthusiast