Help Your Business By Improving Your Surveys0. 

The decisions that you make towards your success in business can stem from how effective your surveys are. Gather info on how your customers feel about your products or services, your employees etc… A very effective way Ebook:Strengthen Your Business In A Recessionthat you can tell how your company is doing is by conducting a thorough survey of your customers/ clients.

You can create a survey by using a survey form. There are several ways to gather information for your surveys. You can start with surveying the your current clients/ customers by email, a group meeting such as a seminar, anonymous survey by mail, a booth in the mall or the phone.  The way that you design and implement your survey determines how effective it will be. You will know that you have a weak or strong survey by your results.

So what makes a good survey? Well your design and implementation is very important. When you construct your surveys do not create questions that will influence answers.  For example: in a questionnaire directed toward employees about ideas for the company’s future growth, questions such as: “Do you feel our company should prepare for changes in the industry?” Questions like that elicit obvious positive responses. Instead, wording should be more specific, such as: “Name the single most important change the company should consider during the upcoming year.”

Make your questionnaire specific.Don ‘t ask: “What is your opinion of the new phone system?” Instead, say: “Give specific examples of how the new phone system has benefited your work.” You might add a follow-up question to cover opposite responses, such as: “Site specific ways in which the new phone system has hindered your work.”

Just keep questionnaires brief and to the point. Respondents tend to become irritated when asked too many questions or if it takes too long. This could influence the accuracy of results.

You can keep it simple and not too many long drawn out questions, If you need written answers keep them very short fill in the blanks. Instead, use scales that allow them to select their degree of satisfaction or dissatisfaction like 1-10 and 10 being the highest level of satisfaction.

For example, the question: “Are you satisfied with the service you received from our receptionists?” could be followed by selections that the respondent could circle: Very satisfied, Satisfied, or Not satisfied. Keep choice of selections to a minimum. This makes it easier for respondents.

Following the scale of choices, the questionnaire could include space for the respondent to write specific reasons for being satisfied or dissatisfied. At the left of this space include: Reasons, Please explain or Examples. This will allow the respondent to describe specific situations, and may prove helpful in the overall evaluation of the survey.

When creating the page layout of a survey questionnaire (and even when writing the questions), find sample surveys that you can use as a basis for your design. This will make things simpler than designing from scratch. Survey forms can be obtained through local Chambers of Commerce, Small Business Administration centers or the Internet.

When conducting a survey, make sure that you’re addressing the people who will give you the most accurate and useful information. For example, if you’re interested in finding out what customers feel about you, don’t limit your survey to only your most loyal customers.

In general, the more people you survey, the more accurate the results. A survey among 25 people isn’t as strong as a survey among 100 or 1,000 people. The exception is, of course, when only a small number of people can give you the information you need.

If your survey is attempting to gather and document information that is vital to your company, consider hiring research experts to design and conduct the survey for you. These firms specialize in market research and can make sure that results are statistically valid. You can locate research firms in the Yellow Pages or the internet, under “Market Research Companies” or “Marketing Consultants.”