Like many other departments across the University of Rochester, my office uses surveys to collect feedback from students, faculty, staff, and other populations. When I first started developing assessment initiatives in my role, I began using the online survey tool, Qualtrics. Qualtrics is a tool that allows you to build and distribute surveys, create communication flows, and analyze responses within one platform, which helped my office create personalized surveys where we could quickly dive into the data analysis of the results.
One of my favorite attributes of Qualtrics is if you or your department purchases a license through the University that Qualtrics comes preloaded with a University of Rochester theme that includes the official University logo and colors. The theme allows my department’s surveys to look professionally branded. This ability helps assessments look credible, which can be helpful when using the platform for more formal data collections.
Besides being University branded, Qualtrics allows back-end users to develop the messaging associated with survey outreach. Within the Message Library of the tool, you can create ten types of personalized messages, including thank you emails, end-of-survey messages, reminder emails, and SMS invites. I have found that this feature of Qualtrics has allowed me to directly instruct participants on the following steps to help increase responses rates. I also like sending messages directly through the platform to keep track of message distributions.
Another factor that leads me to use Qualtrics over other survey tools is how user-friendly this platform is on the back and front ends. On the backside of the Qualtrics, I can easily create questions in different formats, including multiple-choice, form fields, matrix tables, heat maps, and various other options. I also like using logic on different questions to help force responses or allow participants to skip questions. On the front end of Qualtrics, participants can easily access the surveys and receive personalized communications.
Overall, I have used Qualtrics for the past three years, from quick staff surveys to collect responses after personnel interviews to more complex assessments of collecting feedback after Board of Trustees Meetings. Throughout my experiences, I have increasingly developed my skills of using the tool and learned more about the platform, which has allowed my office to use data to make quick, unbiased decisions.
Qualtrics gives a department the ability to build, distribute, and analyze online surveys, collaborate in real-time, and export data in multiple formats through a user-friendly platform. If you are interested in implementing Qualtrics into your workplace, check out the University IT software listing for more information.