Large organizations' demand for research can outstrip capacity. Unless research is able to scale in response, it's possible for it to become a bottleneck for design and development. However, it can be difficult and sometimes inefficient to grow the number of researchers.
Democratizing research—that is, sharing research activities among non-researchers—can help scale research insights without having to expand the team. This requires the role of the research team to shift toward acting as a centre of excellence, providing models, templates, best practices, and playbooks that act as guardrails to maintain research quality.
This approach should be scaled in gradually, as it still requires effort to support. Start by democratizing lower complexity, evaluative research activities; research specialists can continue to perform generative research.
- Make research insights easy to find, consume, and use - Research is pointless if it's not made accessible to those who need to act on it