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Passing operational data to a survey

It is crucial to pass operational data to your survey and then combine it with experience data you gather in the survey to create insightful reports and dashboards. You can use the info in your display logic, routings, reports, filters and notifications.

There are two ways to add operational data to surveys:

  • Import the data along with your contacts
  • Prefill hidden questions

Each option is explained more in detail below.

Import the metadata with your contacts

When you import contacts, either by uploading a file or through the API, you can add metadata such as: gender, date of birth, country, state, and 20 custom text fields where you can add any type of information that you need for your research. All of the fields that you import will be available to use in display and routing logic, reports, filters and raw data. You can also turn the contact fields into structured data, by feeding them into hidden questions. The hidden questions also need to be used when your survey is set to be de-identified and you still a need a field the reports, like department.

You can rename these custom fields to make them easily recognizable and give them easy to use variable names.

Prefill hidden questions

When you are not making use of the contacts functionality, but still wish to include known metadata in the results, you can prefill hidden questions with this information by adding querystring parameters to the URL or by using the prefilling settings.

The answers in these hidden questions can then be used in display logic, shown using variables and used in reporting.

You can prefill open text boxes, or closed questions, such as radio buttons questions, or checkbox questions. The open text box questions will result in a word cloud, the closed questions will result in bar, column or pie charts. The correct question type will depend on your specific analysis needs.

Ask the question

Probably the simplest way, but often forgotten: just ask your respondents.

This option is, of course, the best way forward when you don’t have any metadata readily available, yet you still require it for your research. Then all you can do, is ask the question. That way this information will become available in your results as well.

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