Last updated: 
14 June 2018

Current research

Web Optimisation Research

IP Australia is conducting research to understand issues relating to the design, delivery and maintainability of our website. This will inform a plan to optimise our website to ensure it continues to meet the needs of our audiences.

As part of this improvement effort, IP Australia seeks to more fully understand our customers’ experiences when using our website. We have engaged an independent firm, Digital Garden, to help us conduct this research which will be conducted during June 2018. A selection of our customers may be approached by Digital Garden seeking assistance with the research.

Further enquiries about this research can be directed to the IP Australia Web Team at

Deep dive customer research project (June – July 2018)

The IP Australia Customer Satisfaction Survey 2018 achieved one of the highest response rates achieved from our customers. The results have been distributed to and discussed with our executive team. Based on the feedback from our customers, IP Australia has commenced activities to adjust and improve our services where needed.

As part of this improvement effort, IP Australia seeks to more fully understand our customers’ experiences regarding certain services that we provide. We have engaged an independent, quality certified research firm (Bastion Latitude) to help us conduct some qualitative Deep Dive research into these areas. This research project is being conducted during June and July 2018. A selection of our customers may be approached by Bastion Latitude seeking assistance with the research.

Further enquiries about this research can be directed to the IP Australia Customer Intelligence Team at

Recent research

Customer Satisfaction Survey 2018

The Customer Satisfaction Survey measures customers’ satisfaction with our products and services over time. The survey:

  • ensures a customer-centred approach to service improvement and provides reporting across important performance indicators (Customer Service Charter and Portfolio Budget Statement).
  • used new techniques and survey structure to achieve our highest response rate so far (21%), providing highly reliable results.

The 2018 findings show:

  • the agency has sustained its high overall customer satisfaction (85%), comparative to the previous year (84%).
  • customers are very happy with our call centre service and the politeness and professionalism of our staff generally, although we can make some improvements in the way we answer more complex issues on the phone.
  • there are improvements we can make to the application and examination process based on customers’ experience, communicate important messages about protecting intellectual property with our customers, Australians and industry.

Further enquiries about this research can be directed to our Customer Intelligence Team at

Trade Mark Assist – Usability research

We have completed a second round of usability testing research in September 2017 to identify how easy our new Trade Mark Assist tool is to use in preparation for a Beta release. We sought feedback on ease of navigation, ease of learning, and whether needs are being met when using the tool.

Trade Mark Assist is a tool for applicants that uses machine learning to provide a smart search and suggest function for trade mark goods and services as well as business rule and mandatory field testing (based on the Trade Marks Act 1995).

On completing a preliminary assessment, applicants are provided with a list of potential trade mark issues in real-time. By informing and educating applicants through Trade Mark Assist, it is predicted that trade mark application quality will be improved.

Our research found that 93 per cent of experienced users and 89 per cent of inexperienced users had a positive experience with the pre-release Beta of Trade  Mark Assist. Following feedback, we focused on mobile support, simplification of the search function, reducing unnecessary text and the ability to apply for a trade mark from within the tool.

This was a really positive message for us as we continue to innovate our customer service channels for small business, and we thank all those who participated. You can try the current version of Trade Mark Assist now.

Customer Satisfaction Survey 2017

The annual IP Australia Customer Satisfaction Survey is a longitudinal survey which allows us to measure customer satisfaction over time and to gain valuable insights, enabling us to innovate and adapt to the changing needs of our customers. Customers across all four IP rights (patents, trade marks, designs and plant breeder’s rights) who had submitted an application within the last 12 months were surveyed. We received responses from 2061 customers, providing a statistically reliable sample.

Overall customer satisfaction with, IP Australia employees and services was very high. Satisfaction with staff courtesy (88%), the reliability of the IP Australia’s website (86%), responding in a timely manner (85%) and the accuracy of information provided (84%) all rated highly.

Respondents to this year’s survey have provided valuable ideas and insights that will help us improve services for our customers into the future, while we continue to provide the highest quality IP rights in a fast-changing world.

Understanding what satisfies our customers (April – May 2016)

This research was conducted by Colmar Brunton on our behalf

We sought to understand what aspects of our products and services are most important to you to assist us to better understand how we can measure your levels of satisfaction with us. We conducted in-depth interviews with a sample of our customers. The outcome of this research informed our Customer Satisfaction Survey.

Customer Satisfaction Survey 2016 (May 2016)

The customer satisfaction survey was part of a two-phase research activity. The first phase involved stakeholder interviews to capture information to inform the quantitative survey conducted in May 2016. The survey was sent out to over 7300 customers who applied for or had been granted an IP right in the period mid-November 2015 to early May 2016. Those that responded included self-filers, attorneys and individuals who filed through an attorney across all four intellectual property (IP) rights.

The purpose of the survey was to understand customer levels of satisfaction with various aspects of our business and look for opportunities to improve the products and services we provide.

Overall, the results were excellent with no significant areas of dissatisfaction. We’re happy to hear you’re satisfied with our service, but we know there’s always room for improvement.

The key findings of the 2016 survey include:

  • 89 per cent of customers surveyed were highly satisfied or satisfied with us overall.
  • Interactions with our staff was a stand-out area of high satisfaction. Customers regard our staff as courteous, helpful, competent, sympathetic and fair.
  • While customers were overall satisfied with the quality and reliability of our services – Online Services (eServices), website, search systems, and call centre – these areas are some of the least satisfying aspects to our customers.
  • For examination products, the most important attributes for customers were: accuracy of search, first reports to include all significant objections/deficiencies, and correct application of the law.
  • The length of time the application process takes is the least satisfying aspect for customers. It is not clear whether this is due to levels of understanding of what is involved, false expectations, quality and reliability of online systems, or other factors.

With a focus on continuous improvement, we’re taking on board your insights and looking at how we can make things better. We’ve already made changes to our website and some correspondence and will look to improve our targeted educational resources.

We thank those that responded for having your say and helping us to continuously improve our services.

Patent Search Information Statement (May 2016)

This survey sought feedback from IP professionals and self-filers on the Australian Search Information Statement. We wanted to understand how our patent search information statement compared to the information provided by other intellectual property offices and sought input on improvements that might be valuable to users of our patent search products.

Source IP (May 2016)

In May 2016 we sent out a survey to the research organisations who are currently featured on Source IP to ask them about their experiences with the design and implementation of the site along with their feedback about the first six months since it was launched.

We received feedback from 14 participants and the overall feedback was excellent, with all respondents extremely supportive of the site and happy with the initial consultation and the level of communication since launch.  Various pieces of feedback indicated that the profile of the site needs to be increased.  As promotion and marketing of the site began in April 2016, (one month prior to this research), this feedback is encouraging for alignment to our future directions with the expectations of those involved with the site.

Start-up research (May 2016)

The Start-up Research project was conducted by Bienalto Consulting to understand how start-ups interact with IP and to better understand commercialisation strategies.  The project was a two phase research activity, interviewing 24 people as part of the qualitative research, followed by a quantitative survey. The survey was sent to over 800 customers and was available via our website and social media channels.  The survey received 218 responses.  The key finding from the report noted that start-ups do not have the capital to actively engage with IP and proposed a stronger package of content across domestic and international IP is required as well as an enhanced on-the-ground engagement program and active media and marketing strategies to lift IP Australia’s reputation. 

TM Headstart (May 2016)

This research sought feedback on our TM Headstart service to explore possible user experience improvements. We wanted to understand how the service was being used by trade mark filers (including first time self-filers and experienced users), as well as their perceptions and motivations, to help us make informed decisions regarding any future developments of the TM Headstart service.   

IP Insurance (April 2016)

This survey was sent out to 12,000 customers who had transacted with us within the six month period prior to April 2016. We conducted this research to understand our customer’s views of IP insurance. The survey was closed on the 8th of April 2016. The information was collected to better understand how IP Australia could support IP owners protect their IP.

Correspondence re-design (January – March 2016)

This research consisted of two stages, the first stage included a survey sent out to a selection of customers who had transacted with us in the 12 month period prior to January 2016. The second stage consisted of a survey to users of our online services. The first stage closed on 29 January 2016 and the second stage closed on 30 March 2016. We received detailed responses from our customers about our redesigned correspondence. This information was used to assist in the design of new look correspondence that we are planning to roll out via a phased approach over the next 9 months (to end 2016).