What separates a good survey from a bad one? And more importantly – why does it matter if the survey is good or not? A survey is a survey, right? So something has to be better than nothing – or does it?

Surveys are built with the intent to achieve projectable results or descriptions of a larger population. A well-built survey contains the following:

  • Provides large sample precision
  • Supplies objectivity of large probability samples
  • The wealth of high-powered analytic tools available
  • Reveal complex, multi-level distinctions among groups
  • Inter-temporal comparisons

If a survey isn’t properly built it could result in broad shallow data, irrelevant results, it could include biases, become unrewarding, or result in high unresponsive rates. A survey isn’t just a survey, anyone can just ask questions, but it is about asking the right questions to the right person at the right time, in order to attain the necessary results. An effective survey demands mastery of sample, mastery of question design, and effective supporting plans such as: handling nonresponses, managing data collection, data analysis. Survey questions must be focused on a single topic, use simple vocabulary, be brief and grammatically simple. Surveys are one of the most efficient research methods because they are cost-effective, extensive, flexible and dependable. They allow decision-makers to eliminate the “gut” decision making ideology from their minds and allow them to become data-driven decision makers by analyzing results in order to draw conclusions and make the best decision possible. 

By: Brandon Diaz

Leave a Reply