How Askable Plus helped Macquarie University make informed decisions within three weeks

Key outcomes

2-3 weeks of dedicated research work saved

According to Kevin, the research project was completed in 3 weeks, a timeline that "cut two to three weeks off" what usually takes 5-6 weeks for Macquarie’s internal team. “In using our internal folks, they've got other stuff on,” he explained.

High confidence in decision making

With only one yearly opportunity to refresh their course information on the website, the team at Macquarie University had to get it right. Askable's research generated actionable insights, directly contributing to informed decisions.

Cost-effective and flexible

Flexible, dedicated resources from Askable Plus provided an efficient and cost-effective solution. "You can get a dedicated UX research resource that you might only need for a short period of time." Kevin emphasised. 

"For anyone looking outside of their organisation for UX research capability, Askable Plus is the answer!"

Kevin Raccani
Digital UX CX Manager
The challenge

Limited opportunities and lack of time led to anxiety

Macquarie University ranks among Australia's top academic institutions, catering to a broad spectrum of both domestic and international students. This diversity amplifies the role of moderated research, enabling the university to delve into the underlying 'whys' of students from varied backgrounds, truly representing their differing needs and viewpoints. The research methodology also leans heavily on a rigorous quota sampling, considering diverse parameters including nationality, fields of study, language proficiencies, among others.

Kevin's team has showcased their expertise in this area, having previously carried out exemplary research through Askable's participant recruitment.However, the recent project they undertook presented its own set of challenges.

According to Kevin, Macquarie University had only "one opportunity a year to update the course details" which made it extremely critical to get it right. The limited opportunities amplified the importance of accuracy and increased the stakes for this project. 

Additionally, their internal resources were both stretched and valuable. Kevin encapsulated this sentiment when he stated, "We're all busy." With everyone engaged in multiple projects, the team was hard-pressed to allocate dedicated time for this particular research.

A subsequent concern arose about the breadth of their research; the team was uncertain if they could engage more than 6-8 participants, leading to anxieties about potentially oversaturating or under-serving the research pool.

The solution

Highly qualified Askable Plus researchers that deliver actionable insights without the hassle

The research team at Macquarie University recognised the importance of conducting comprehensive unbiased research and opted for Askable Plus – our complete research solution. Askable offered an end-to-end service—from recruiting participants all the way through to delivering actionable insights. Kevin had the opportunity to choose from a pool of highly qualified Askable Plus researchers with years of experience in the higher education industry.

Their capacity issues were immediately resolved, thanks to the efficiency of Askable’s project management and smooth recruitment process. Originally intending to engage 6-8 participants, Macquarie University was able to expand this to a diverse set of 24, which proved to be rather important.

Kevin endorsed the experience, stating, "Askable’s coordination was really good. So the communication through Slack and pulling those questions together was really, really helpful."

Beyond recruitment, conducting research, and management, Askable offered valuable unbiased and actionable insights. Kevin appreciated this third-party analysis, affirming that the external perspective helped them identify issues they hadn't considered before. "We now know that it's a slightly bigger issue than we had thought," he mentioned.

Another significant advantage was the speed of project completion. With two Askable Plus researchers, the university was able to expedite the research process considerably. Kevin was enthusiastic about the quick turnover, saying, "I'm really glad that there were the two people doing the research. It got done really, really quickly."

The result

Amplified efficiency and time savings

One of the most compelling outcomes of the partnership with Askable was the significant time saved. Had Macquarie University conducted the research internally, Kevin revealed it would have taken nearly "five to six weeks of dedicated work" due to other ongoing projects and interruptions. With Askable Plus, Kevin explained, "it probably cut two to three weeks off the end of getting through all of this".

Empowered decision-making through unbiased insights

The research wasn't just fast—it was enlightening. Kevin emphasised the role of Askable Plus researchers in offering a new perspective into the research. "We've always thought that it's this much of an issue. But now that the Askable Plus researcher has uncovered it, we now know that it's a slightly bigger issue than we had thought," he said. This third-party validation empowered Macquarie University to make confident, evidence-based decisions for improving their course pages.

Cost-effectiveness with flexibility

Kevin was particularly appreciative of the financial efficiency that Askable Plus brought to the table. "For anyone looking outside of their organisation for UX research capability, Askable Plus is the answer," he affirmed. Unlike hiring a full-time staff member, Macquarie University could engage highly qualified Askable Plus researchers on a project basis, without committing to a long-term salary. This unique business model offered them the nimbleness they needed to tackle their specific challenges.


"In the middle of the presentation, my manager wrote to me and said, 'this is fantastic.' So he was really happy"

Kevin summed up the overall experience by recalling his manager's immediate reaction. "In the middle of the presentation, my manager wrote to me and said, 'this is fantastic.' So he was really happy," he shared. The final endorsement? "I have no hesitation in going back to Askable Plus," encapsulating the measurable success and client satisfaction derived from this project.

Overall, Askable significantly exceeded Macquarie University's expectations, delivering cost-effective, rapid, and deep actionable insights. This collaboration perfectly illustrates the immense value that specialised external expertise, like Askable Plus, can bring to an organisation's internal capabilities, offering holistic, credible, and actionable results.


Macquarie University


Ranked among the top 1% of universities globally, Macquarie University is recognised for its pre-eminence in key research disciplines, as well as producing graduates who are among the most sought-after professionals in the world. Their vision is to be a destination of choice for students and staff who share their values.



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