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Compusense at 30: still putting clients first

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I’ve been part of Compusense since its beginning. My dad started the business in 1986, a couple of years after finishing his PhD in Food Science. One of the things I can recall from those early days, and something that continues at Compusense now, is the importance he put on his relationships. He would talk about colleagues and clients as friends, and still does. In fact, I’d say that many of the long-term professional relationships he’s had over the 30 years of Compusense (and even longer as a food scientist) have lasted because he fundamentally cares about the people he’s worked with. Three decades later, it’s something that Compusense continues to embody.

Compusense isn’t going to be the fastest to market. We’re not going to be the ones to jump on a new method bandwagon on day one. Why? Because we’re in sensory for the long haul. We’re trying to make the lives of our clients and users better - not just by automating a solution, but by getting a deep understanding of the challenge our clients are trying to solve. By getting to the heart of the problem, not just a statistic. By looking for the outcome, not just a short-term software solution.

It’s true, our software is more expensive than many of our competitors. And we’re facing competition that’s looking to drive down the price of sensory software. That’s ok - they’re going to deliver a different solution from what we’re offering. They’re looking to create a one-size-fits-all application and trying to make as much money as they possibly can in doing that. That hasn’t been our model to date, and it’s unlikely to ever be.

We’ve invested and reinvested in our products and our people since we started. We’ve never taken seed money, and we’re not beholden to some investor who’s going to be looking for double-digit returns. Why? Because we’re not in sensory just for the money - we’re in it for the long haul.

Sensory and consumer science are finally getting more mainstream attention than ever. We’re not just talking about “the Coke / Pepsi taste challenge” anymore. We’ve got high-profile scientists like Charles Spence who are getting the attention of the media and the general public in helping people understand the role our senses play in very complex and rich experiences. And just as we have done since 1986, Compusense is going be a part of helping sensory and consumer science make even more progress.

We do something that’s different from our competitors. Instead of spending more money on marketing and sales, we self-fund research that gets published in peer reviewed journals and presented at international conferences. We’re doing this because we can use the results of that work to better inform our solutions, and to help our clients get better results from their research.

At the IFT conference in Chicago this July, I spoke with a colleague who remarked on how things have changed with regards to the software offerings on the market lately. I agreed; there’s a lot more to choose from, and that’s a good thing. The variety and number of offerings mean that the value of sensory science is being recognized more and more. There are always going to be those who race to the bottom with a cheap(er) solution. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing–as demand for sensory software grows, that market will grow too.

But what we offer is not for that client. We’re not in it for a quick fix and a cheap solution–we deliver sustainable, dependable, thoughtful solutions. We’re drawing on 30 years of experience in sensory and software, and that’s informing the advice and support that we provide to our clients at no extra charge.

So, if you’re looking to implement inexpensive software to get a sensory program going, you’re probably not looking for us.

On the other hand, if you’re looking to establish a relationship with a company that’s trusted by some of the world’s leading product manufacturers who are committed to good sensory and consumer research, we should probably talk.

mpfindlay

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Michael Plater Findlay
Vice President, Business Development
To learn more about Michael, visit Meet our Team

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