Deploying a survey to collect data

SMP Online Survey Software is designed with 4 status levels that control the stages that your surveys are in as they move from being created, to collecting data, to finally being closed.  The stages of an SMP survey are:

  1. Design Mode – This is where you create your questions, set up the routing logic and input your quota structures and exit links.  Once this stage is complete you are ready to move to..,
  2. Test Mode – In this mode you can test the survey either by completing it yourself, sending it to colleagues or running the automated ‘Testbot’ feature.  Once tested you move to..,
  3. Deploy Mode – In this mode the real data is collected as a response to your sample of respondents completing the survey.
  4. Close Mode – When you have collected enough surveys then you can go ahead and close the survey.  No more respondents can answer the survey when it is in this mode.

Learn more about the four stages of an SMP survey by playing the video, or read further below, go to the user manual or read the relevant  topic in the learning section.


To run your survey and receive data you need to “Deploy” it.

To put your survey into the ‘Deploy Mode” mode you have to first put it into “Test mode”. If you haven’t already done so, click your survey over to “Test mode” by clicking on the “Test Mode” button.

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Once in “Test Mode” you can now test the survey to verify that all is working as expected.  The easiest way to do this is to press the TestBot button – shows below.  This will generate a number of dummy surveys for you – depending on how many times you decide to run it.

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Once this has finished running you can then extract this data set into Excel and check that your skips, quotas, screen outs etcetera are working as programmed.

Note that when you deploy the survey none of this test data will be saved.

From the “Test mode” status you are then able to select the “Deploy survey” mode button which will put your survey into deploy mode.  Press the “Deploy survey” mode button shown circled below.

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The icon will change to that shown below and the survey is now ready for you to send out to your invites and begin collecting your data.

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There are now a number of options available to you to send out your survey invites.  These options will be covered in “Deploying your surveys 102”.

 

Note that it is possible to move back into earlier modes but to do so means that the data you have already collected will be archived and not be a part of the final data set until you manually put them back together.  This is because by changing a survey that you have launched you are potentially changing the data structure and as they are now different you are creating different data sets.

However it is a fairly simple step for anyone familiar with either MS Excel or MS Access to strip the datasets together again if that is necessary.

Author:  John Hughes

Comments welcome at: jhughes@smpsurveys.com