MRDs moving to DIY?

As primarily a fieldwork firm heavily engaged in both traditional qualitative fieldwork and online qualitative fieldwork, we have a broad vista of the qual industry.  Our clients are researchers who hail from literally all over the world. 

Around the office, we have been noticing a dicotomy that has created a lot of discussion and diverse opinions about the direction of the industry.  We are noticing two opposing trends that appear to both be driven by the need to lower costs. 

  1. Marketing Research Departments are shedding personnel and outsourcing more.
  2. Marketing Research Departments (MRD) are doing more DIY qual in-house and cutting out the outside research supplier.

Personally, I think MRDs are using online qualitative services to do more DIY to cut qual costs but continue to outsource face-to-face qual.  If this is the case, then the future will look quite differently for MRDs and research firms as online qual continues to gain traction and evolve. 

Thoughts?

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