WLUSU market research project moving forward

The first step towards the Wilfrid Laurier University Students’ Union market research project has been taken, as members of the board of directors and the management team plan to sit down with a consultant from MacPhie and Co. on July 31 to map out the union’s objectives for the project.

The research initiative will involve WLUSU hiring an outside firm to gather student opinions on the effectiveness of the union and evaluate overall satisfaction with student services on campus.

Board chair Saad Aslam noted that the meeting with the consultant is a necessary first-step for WLUSU to be taking.

“[The consultant] will help us get a better understanding of what market research can offer,” said Aslam.

“From that we can put together a proposal to fit our needs and get the best value for our money.”

WLUSU vice-president of public affairs Joel Robinson added that while they haven’t finalized anything yet, after sitting down with the consultant they hope to have a better idea of what to look for when hiring a research firm.

“We will sit down and define our objectives and get an overall idea of where we want this market research to head towards and set some goals for the year,” said Robinson.

WLUSU hopes to have a research firm hired by mid-to-late-August and have the beginning stages of the project underway right after Orientation Week in September.

“We will start setting up some more concrete timelines, but it will be a one-year project, ending in April,” said Robinson.

“Hopefully we can get results back throughout the year so we can make changes if necessary.”

During the June 13 operating budget meeting, the board of directors passed a $25,000 amendment to make this project possible.

Since management had created a zero-balanced budget, the board’s approval of this project gave the board a deficit budget.

Video conferencing project on hold

A $43,000 project to install video conferencing in the WLUSU boardroom has been put on hold.

The board passed the project conditionally at the operating budget meeting in June, but after additional documentation was sent to the board – at thier requst – there was still a lot of e-mail discussion on the topic.

Aslam decided that it would be best to continue any further discussion at the next board meeting, which will take place mid-September. At this time the board will decide if management can proceed with this initiative.

Aslam notes that the suspension of the video conferencing project is not related to the union’s deficit budget, which the market research project created, saying that the video conferencing money would not likely be re-allocated towards the market research project.

“We do have money set aside in our reserve fund for extra things that come up,” said Aslam.

“That’s where the money for the market research will come from.”

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