Welcome to Happy Stories! Every week we’ll keep you up-to-date on the latest developments in the area of UX research and testing of digital products. Tests ensure happy users and that makes us happy. Hence the name; Happy Stories. Recruiting the right respondents for your next test can be quite a hassle. But don’t worry, we experience this every day and that’s why we will share our best practices of recruiting respondents.

At the end of this article you will know:

✓   The do’s and don’ts of recruiting respondents

Be critical and realistic

Clients often have divergent ideas about what kind of respondents they want for the research. It is easy to pass this directly on to the recruiter, but what do these things mean and why are they so important to the customer? With this information a recruiter can do a lot more and a search direction really becomes a criterion with which panel members can be ‘tested’.

It is up to the researcher, and not the recruiter, to determine what is actually necessary and to translate this into good recruitment criteria. Determine before the recruitment starts what is important to the customer, for whom the product solves a problem, and what can influence the results of the test.

Determine which criteria have priority

After determining the criteria, it is important to determine on which criteria the priorities lie. Certain requirements are very nice, but not necessary to be able to test a product. Someone does not have to fit exactly in the target group if they have experience with it and / or can easily imagine it.

By putting the criteria in order of necessity, the recruiters know what they should pay special attention to. This does not mean that you have to become less critical / specific when setting up the criteria, but indicate which criteria are essential and which ones would be nice.

Prepare a timetable in advance

Sometimes a recruiter makes an initial planning but later it appears that this planning will not work. On the other hand, respondents quickly lose their motivation or drop out when they have to change their plans. Therefore Decide in advance how the test day will look like. This allows the recruiter to quickly make a good planning and try to stay as close to this schedule as possible.

A good timetable shows how long a test session lasts, what time the first respondent can start, how much time is needed between respondents, how long the lunch lasts, what time the last respondent ends, and what time the debrief begins. In addition, it may be necessary for various reasons to plan a gap in the day.

Limit homework tasks

Sometimes it is necessary for respondents to perform, activate, or prepare something before the test. However, this can deter and makes it more likely that respondents drop out. So let them do this only if it really can not be done otherwise. Another way of doing this is having the respondents carry out the tasks as much as possible on the test day, where possible even in the waiting room, because they have to wait there and are directly able to ask questions.

Plan an appointment with the recruiter

Sometimes the criteria seem simple and the research is reasonably standard. Nevertheless, it is always a good idea to schedule time together with the recruiter to start the recruitment process. Firstly, you are more likely to discover whether the recruiter fully understands your criteria. Secondly, there are often things that you have forgotten to report, such as the test location, the fee, the reserve respondent, age requirements, Android / iOS usage, and whether the respondent can know in advance for whom the test is being carried out.

Plan and Prioritize

Finding the right respondents for your test can be quite a hassle. The most important lesson have learned over time is that you need plan your test in detail and prioritize. Using the above tips will help you do this and make it a more hassle free overall experience. And if you need help, we are happy to help with our respondent network with 7000+ respondents.

Happy week!