According to InSites Consulting, the launch of Fluent fits within the broader ambition of the agency to offer clients the opportunity to benefit from a hybrid service delivery model.

"According to the latest GRIT report, automation is especially popular when it comes to analysis and reporting of quantitative research, with close to 50% of participants reporting to have adopted, or being in the process of piloting, automation tools," says the team at Insites Consulting.

This is in line with a recent InSites Consulting study among corporate research and insights managers, indicating that 35% of insight professionals are experimenting with DIY tools today, and 52% are exploring automated solutions for the future.

The Fluent platform aims to add a consultative, expert-approved layer. It is an automation solution for clients, integrating aspects of setting up and running a quantitative test among consumers, from study design to data collection, data analysis and reporting.

The platform allows research users to create and deploy research studies at their convenience, with a turnaround time of two to three days from the initial set-up to the final insight delivery. The process can be run fully DIY, or co-piloted with a solution-driven professional, aiming to ensure strategic input into the process and value-add interpretations of findings.

The Fluent platform was originally developed by South African modern insights agency Columinate. With Columinate having recently joined the InSites Consulting ranks, the software now becomes part of InSites Consulting’s global offering.

"Fluent is designed to make research more efficient and extends the digital research benefits of increased speed, lower cost, and higher quality to a whole new level," says Henk Pretorius, InSites Consulting managing partner, co-founder and MD of Columinate.

"Today, Fluent is available in the South African market, solely for ad testing as a first pilot roll-out. In the second phase of development, Fluent will incorporate more validation methodologies such as insight validation, idea screening, including concept and pack testing before rolling it out globally," Pretorius adds.

With the Fluent automation platform, clients will be able to reduce the cycle time of consumer validation projects, drive down overall costs and take control of the research process. InSites Consulting says the validation solutions offered through Fluent will be tailored to the needs and wants of individual clients, offering a desired level of customisation.

In addition, the Fluent platform will be integrated into InSites Consulting’s community platforms, aiming to unlock an additional layer of efficiency by having the same participants collaborate across multiple studies.

"In most cases, the internal clock speed of companies is slower than the external clock speed of environmental change. With Fluent, we are supporting clients in synchronising these clocks," says Annelies Verhaeghe, head of innovation and managing partner at InSites Consulting.

"The Fluent technology supports our ambition of becoming the first full-fledged hybrid research agency, incorporating a DIY environment in our full-service research offering," concludes Verhaeghe.

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