Survey Design
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The Professional Survey Group has designed hundreds of surveys for clients in a number of industries over the past two decades.  A well-constructed survey requires the successful interplay of many elements.  Finding the right balance of questions to address often disparate needs is one of the great challenges in survey design.  Partnering with experienced researchers can help you avoid serious errors that will diminish the quality of the information you gather and reduce the value of your project.

The Professional Survey Group will assist you in the process of quality survey design.  Below are just a few of the issues that we will help you to successfully navigate:



Crafting well-written questions

Poorly-written survey questions will not only confuse participants, leaving them doubting the professionalism of the survey, but will often lead to misleading responses.  Over the years, we have seen many examples of poor question design, even in widely distributed surveys by large research organizations.  We have seen questions requiring an advanced degree in English to understand, questions containing three or four disparate thoughts, and "yes" or "no" questions in which the participant is offered a nonsensical scale.  The consultants of the Professional Survey Group know how to craft well-written questions that will be clearly understood by all participants.
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The importance of proper survey length

Fielding a survey that is too long, irritating your current or potential customers and lowering completion rates, is certainly the most obvious and egregious mistake that can be made in the survey design process.  However, there is no magical limit to the number of minutes allowed for a successful survey.  Different audiences with different levels of motivation will tolerate different survey lengths.  Forcing yourself to abbreviate a survey unnecessarily, therefore forgoing valuable questions that would have informed business decisions, is a lost opportunity and constitutes a failure to maximize the investment you have made in your survey endeavor.  The Professional Survey Group has years of experience working with clients to field surveys of the appropriate length for a variety of audiences.



Whatever your research goals, the Professional Survey Group can help you craft a well-designed survey which will ask the right questions in the right manner.  Whether you have only a vague research question or need help refining an existing survey draft, we can help you deliver a seamless and professional end-product.
Ordering questions appropriately

A subtle but important factor in survey design is the fact that posing certain questions can affect participants' responses to later questions.  The Professional Survey Group understands these effects and knows both where questions should be placed within a survey, as well as when question order should be rotated or randomized to prevent ordering effects.
Choosing the correct question format

Should a specific question be asked as an open-end (allowing free text response), a dichotomous choice (e.g. Yes/No, True/False), or on a scale?  In many cases it depends on the information that you hope to obtain from that item.  Other times there are clear correct choices that only years of asking questions in various ways can inform.  Choosing the proper question format takes both an understanding of the likely response quality and a well thought out analytic plan. 
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