Four Steps to a Quality Survey

A well made survey is a solid tool for any company. It can help with external or internal logistics and is a great tool for evidence. Unfortunately, not all surveys are made equally. There are four key steps to creating and conducting an effective quantitative survey.

The first step is preparation. This step is all about figuring out what the research aims to ask and why. There should be research objectives, a timeline, an outline, and basic formatting. Preparation takes the most thought but the least execution typically.

The second step is creation. Hopefully an outline already exists at this point, but this is where the survey takes on its form. An important note here is making sure the questions are asking what is intended. This means do not load questions, make questions clear and concise, and don’t attempt to influence through formatting.

The third step is execution. This can include a preliminary test to ensure everything runs smoothly. And then quite simply conducting the survey. Execution can be one of the longest but most simple steps in the process. It’s a matter of finding the right people and getting them to take and finish the survey.

Finally there’s analysis and reporting. Analysis is where everything comes together. What were the results, and more importantly what do they mean? Although reporting and formatting is how the results actually are received. If these results are meant to incite some sort of change, reporting is essential. Charts and graphs are particularly effective ways to visualize data.

And those are the four simple but essential steps to creating a survey. It’s important to make sure that each is given the time it deserves. If that seems challenging, there are services like IncQuery that can expedite the process. Analysis in particular can require coding and software that many companies and individuals may not have. The most important part is never compromising the study for simplicity or ease.

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