Employee Satisfaction Surveys – Choosing the Right Data Type for Your Survey

When preparing an employee survey or employee questionnaire, the questions you select directly impact your survey success.   When you reach the analysis and reporting stage, the tables, charts and statistics produced relies on the ‘type’ of data that is provided from the questionnaire you’ve prepared.  Each response gives information that is either qualitative or quantitative and depending on your objectives, understanding each data type is critical in order to formulate a questionnaire that gets the detailed data you need from your successful employee survey.

Here are five types of data you might consider necessary for your employee survey:

1.    Named Category Data 

  • Usually obtained from closed questions and are in no specific order 

2.    Ordered Category Data 

  • Labeled categories in an obvious order.  Ordinal Data (as it’s referred to) is usually obtained from rating scale questions but also from closed questions with ordered categories 

3.    Numeric or Quantity Data 

  • Numeric responses usually obtained from open questions with a quantity response or form ordinal date with numeric values assigned to the categories 

4.    Date and Time Data 

  • Open question that requires date and time response 

5.    Literal Data 

  • Open question with a free text response 

In our next few posts this week, we will be delving into these data types in greater detail with specific examples of each, to assist you in preparing the right employee survey for your human resource survey needs.

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