Critical Insights Information Center
In addition to a robust qualitative research practice, Critical Insights also specializes in the design and implementation of national and local telephone surveys for clients in the government, private enterprise, academic and non-profit sectors.
The company’s staff combines a broad knowledge of advanced survey methodology with extensive experience in project management to produce the highest quality results. The staff is supported by state-of-the-art technology for sampling, data collection and statistical analysis.
In order to guarantee clients that all interviewing is done under professional conditions, the company established an in-house centralized data collection facility – the Critical Insights Information Center – in 1998.
The Information Center hosts thirty (30) licensed computer assisted telephone interviewing (CATI) stations. All of our interviewing stations run Analytical Computer Systems’ Query interviewing software and are fully integrated with other systems to allow for seamless data collection, verification and analysis.
Data Collection Supervision
As a quality control measure, all interviewing at Critical Insights is continually monitored by trained quality assurance supervisors. Critical Insights employs quality assurance supervisors and managers who perform on-going real-time supervision, coding and editing of each and every interview. At least one supervisor is present at all times during every interviewing shift in the Critical Insights Information Center.
These quality assurance supervisors are typically promoted from within our own interviewing staff, as the experience gained from telephone interviewing enables them to provide effective ongoing training and supervisor to the current interviewing staff.
Strict control of all project work is exercised through supervisor validation of at least 15% of all data collected. In addition, results of all telephone interviews are reviewed by a Critical Insights data services supervisor within 48 hours of completion and any call-backs required to correct possible errors are made immediately.
Supervisory personnel are present on all shifts and have access to fixed CATI stations from which they can remotely listen to and monitor ongoing interviews and provide immediate feedback to the interviewing staff. Remote monitoring is also available to clients who may wish to listen to actual interviews being conducted.
Interviewer Training and Development
Critical Insights’ telephone interviewers are trained and skilled in the art of interviewing protocols and procedures. All Critical Insights interviewers are trained using Marketing Research Association (MRA) professional interviewing methods and must pass a proficiency test prior to beginning work as an interviewer. Sarah Dorsey, Manager of the Critical Insights Information Center, performs all training and is MRA certified. Additionally, the firm regularly holds classroom-style professional development training sessions to update and refine interviewing skills.
Interviewers and quality assurance supervisors are thoroughly briefed for every research assignment in the Critical Insights Information Center. The supervisors serve as resources during each assignment, providing clarification and ongoing guidance and training for the interviewing staff.
Critical Insights has been recognized within the public policy, public health and general business arenas for its ability to reach often difficult-to-access respondents and to gain their cooperation in research efforts. The company possesses a rather unique group of interviewers who have been specifically trained to work with extremely limited sample on difficult projects and to tactfully use their assertiveness skills to obtain responses from even the most problematic or low-incidence respondents. This stringent effort to maintain random samples and to maximize participation rates is especially effective in minimizing the bias that could possibly accompany surveys in which there is a non-response error factor potential.