Introducing: the Survey Tools project
What is the survey tools project, and what are its aims?
Survey tools are an essential part of collecting information for research. Out of 27 survey tools used across The University of Manchester by the research community, two have basic support; Lime survey and Select Survey.
The Research Lifecycle Programme (RLP) engaged with the research community and found that these tools do not fulfil user requirements due to difficulty in use and unwieldy design. As a result, many different survey tools are used across the University and most do not adhere to UoM’s information governance policies.
The aim of the Survey Tools project will be decommissioning the existing survey tool offering at the University, and replacing them with two best of breed tools:
- QualtricsXM – a world leading tool recommended by Gartner
- A locally supported REDCap surveys service– a specialist FBMH researchers tool of choice
The project is due to start in September 2020 and aims to be completed in 1 year.
How will the new tools benefit the research community at Manchester?
The use of QualtricsXM will benefit the research community in the following ways:
- Access to best in class, easy to use survey tools complete with online training and support
- Reduced time developing and deploying surveys, including access to more sophisticated surveys
- Automated reminders and thank you notes will save researchers time, improve completion rates and improve the quality of researcher data
- Access to a better, secure platform for surveys
- Easier analytics of collected data
- Personalised surveys to give participants a tailored experience
- Shared permissions, internally and externally, to make collaboration easier and remove the barrier that cross-institution access currently causes
- Management of 2,000 active surveys on one tool, saving time switching between multiple survey tools
- Ability to download results in multiple file types
- Payments made to survey participants, if used, can be easily tracked
- Ability to fine-tune hypotheses in order to identify specific variables that influence people’s choices
In addition the Supported REDCap service provision, will allow restricted data to be stored securely using the Restricted Data Service, currently being developed by the RLP and expected to come into service by June 2021.
Will there be opportunities for people to get involved or engage with the project?
In January 2020, we asked the staff and the research community to have their say on the most important requirements for survey tools at the University. This feedback was used to select the QualtricsXM and REDCap tools.
In the future, we will be contacting people about their current surveys migration, archives and the closure of current survey tools.