Conducting surveys with EHQ is one of the most common ways to collect feedback from your online engagement projects. One of the best ways to interrogate your feedback and help you look for trends and patterns in your results is by using filters to analyse your data. 

This article will explain what survey filters are, how they work and some different ways you can use them to investigate your data. Understanding this feature is essential for anyone using surveys as part of their online engagement projects and it will greatly help you with reporting on your consultations.

What is survey response filtering?

Survey response filtering in EHQ allows you to compare survey responses based on a set of filters. These filters allow you to compare responses based on combinations of sign-up form questions and also responses to various questions within the survey itself.

This feature allows you to select multiple filters based on these two areas and will automatically apply them to the graphs and responses for each question in your survey.

You can use survey filtering to help you cross analyse responses by running multiple queries and comparing the results. However, the filter logic is limited to using "AND", "OR" logic and can not "COMPARE" results as part of a query.

Simply put, when you apply a single filter, "OR" logic is used within the filter and when multiple filters are combined "AND" logic is used to run the query. 

  • eg. 1. Selecting multiple answers within the same question will be considered 'OR' (Eg: Age group is 20-30 ,30-40)
  • e.g. 2. Adding two or more filters will be treated as 'AND' (Age group is 20-30 ,  Gender is Male)

To do a comparison of results, you will need to run all the relevant queries and compare the differences and similarities through seperate queries..

How does it work?

Survey response filtering works by taking your raw survey data and manipulating the results to show you only what you want to look at. To use this feature simply follow the steps below;

1. Click on the Analytics>Reports section of the admin interface.

2. On the Summary screen, select the project and date range from the drop-down menus to tell EHQ what data you would like to look at.

3. Click on the Surveys link in the left-hand menu to access the Surveys>Report screen.

4. Scroll down to the Survey>Insights section of the reports. Here you will see the on-screen filters.

5. Use the filters to setup your inquiry. You will automatically see the graphs change once you hit the Apply button.

6. Repeat this process for each new inquiry you would like to make and use the hamburger icon next to each graph to download the relevant data to paste into your report.

7. To clear your filters click on the x next to each filter in your list.

What type of queries can I make with survey result filters?

Because each filter is relevant to either a survey question or sign-up form question, the types of queries you can make with filtering will be completely dependant on how you have setup both of these sets of questions.

With this in mind, it is essential that you consider;

  • How your survey is setup and structured, including questions types
  • Whether your survey is anonymous or registered participants only

Structuring your survey in a way that ensures you are capturing all of the information you need, is crucial to harnessing the capability of filtering to analyse your data. In essence, you can only filter out, what you put in!

Moreover, it's worth considering that the sign-up form question filters are only going to be valuable if you have selected registered participants only when setting up your survey. This is because the data will either be incomplete or non-existent for surveys setup as anonymous.

Use these filters to investigate your data for queries such as;

  • How all the Men aged 50+ who answered A to Q1, answered all other questions.
  • How do your community members who answered B to Q2 respond to all other questions?
  • How do community members in certain suburbs feel about your proposal?
  • Is there a difference between Men and Womens views about your proposed designs?
  • Is there a difference between commuters and residents views about your proposed traffic changes?
  • What is the relationship between how satisfied your community members are and their views on your draft proposal?

As you can see, the filters can help you investigate a whole range of queries. One of the best features of survey filtering, is that each filter applies to all questions in your survey at the same time, meaning you only need to run the query once and you can easily compare answers to all of the questions in order to search for trends and patterns.

Setting up a survey for filtering responses

Like all survey design, you should always work backwards from your main research question in order to setup your survey. 

Ask yourself, "what do I need to know/learn to make my decision?"

By answering this question you are then able to extrapolate out the variables that might influence your decision making process and ultimately inform the questions you ask in your survey. Ensure that you include a combination of quantitive and qualitative questions types in order to capture different types of data when you are setting up your survey. 

Remember, essay and text questions are great for capturing qualitative feedback but even with survey filtering, you will still be required you to read, code and digest responses.

What's the difference between filtering survey responses and downloading the codified report?

You can still use the codified reports to do analysis with third party software tools such as Microsoft Excel, Power Bi, BiME, SPSS and other data analysis tools. The main focus of survey response filtering in EHQ is to allow you to quickly investigate your data without having to know how to use or have access to third party software. It does exactly the same thing, we just made it quick and easy for you. 

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