Member Article

Powerful strategies start with your data

Now, more than ever, data is a vital input to successful business decisions. Every business that is thriving today truly understands this and embraces the concept of continuous evolution. A real-time understanding of customer attitudes and behaviours, of how this changes over time and is impacted by global economic, cultural, and political dynamics powers their growth. This means your data must be of the highest quality and stand up to integrity.

There is no silver bullet that can deliver quality research data. The way in which your business, people, processes, and panels operate is central to delivering high-quality results.

*It starts with the panel *

Recently, there have been challenges in the industry with declining response rates and failing panel quality. The ability to control every aspect of who is invited to surveys, as well as the quality of surveys produced is timely, more costly, and therefore rare.

The best panels value their members. Members should be rewarded for the time that they devote to your research – that means paying them fairly and not over soliciting them. Provide enough opportunities to engage them with surveys, but not so many that they are unable to give considered responses. Placing your respondents at the heart of the research process is fundamental in delivering data that can be trusted first time. Our research shows that panellists enjoy being rewarded for their opinions.

Representation is everything

Representation in research is about ensuring that samples accurately reflect the wider population that the research seeks to represent. Effective decision-making based on research data can only happen if that data includes accurate and robust proportions for key sub-samples of the target audiences you need to represent.

Research agencies have a responsibility to actively recruit members that will enable them to deliver truly nationally representative samples. It is absolutely crucial that decisions are being made based on data from a representative, diverse sample of respondents, and your clients are trusting you to provide this.

Where required, you should be able to deliver data with quotas on age, gender, region, social grade, sexuality, disability, and ethnicity. The recent publication of guidance in this area by the MRS Representation in Research group is a great tool that you can use to ensure you maintain focus on this. Technology plays an important role

In the modern research industry, it’s important to use the best available technology to support data quality. For example, for over a decade we have worked with a leading anti-fraud solution provider to support our focus on data quality.

This mean we can check whether someone is in the right country to be eligible to take part in the survey. We also stop duplicate survey attempts and removes bots and fraudulent respondents. Whichever tool you decide to use, it’s important that you are working with a trusted partner who can support your requirements and help you deliver high quality data the first time, every time. Quality powered by people

Ultimately, data quality is determined by your team, processes, and experience. The best tools in the world won’t deliver the data you require alone. By truly understanding the strategic reasons behind the data collection, we help our clients determine the best possible questions to ask, and how to ask them. We then build the processes and checks around these questions to deliver the quality that matters, so they get the insight they need to power their business growth.

Data processing should include automated checks to screen out respondents who are not paying full attention to a survey, logic checks to see if respondents are attentive throughout the surveys, and review areas such as speeders, straight liners, and open-ended responses.

As clientgs you should constantly feed back on the quality of the data you receive in order to enjoy lower than industry levels of “don’t know” in your results. The responses to our open-ended questions will be rich because of this approach, too.

Quality should only ever get better

Data requirements and quality are constantly changing, and we are always challenging ourselves to deliver better and better. There’s no single solution to delivering truly high-quality data. It’s a combination of many parts and always delivered by experienced and trusted teams.

Ultimately, if you operate with data integrity at the heart of your processes and values, you’re on the right track. The most effective strategy is based in deep customer understanding. So, it all starts with the quality of your data…

Chris Atkins - Managing Director, Yonder Data Solutions

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Yonder .

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