How to collect data is one of the most important yet misunderstood or overlooked aspects of running a successful business. There are many ways to collect data, and there isn’t one single way to rule them all.
The method you use should be based on the results you wish to obtain, and that can be broken down into two categories: quantitative and qualitative.
Quantitative research is based on numbers. This can include information like the number of visitors on your website, the number of customers in a given time period, and scalable ratings (e.g. 1 to 10; X out of 5 stars). Quantitative ways to collect data are concrete and easily measurable, but they don’t provide insight as the reason consumers are making decisions.
Qualitative research is based on attributes or qualities. This is something like customer reviews or location. Qualitative ways to collect data seek to answer why consumers are making their decisions and what they think, but they are difficult to measure.
There are ways to collect data that rely on either qualitative or quantitative, and there are ways that measure both. The method you choose depends on what information you want and how you want to use it.
1. Maintenance and Object Data
Collecting object data in the field or onsite is crucial in time-management and cost efficiency. With Nrby, you can easily manage your equipment quantities and statuses as a proactive way to maintain them.
Maintenance and object data collection is a mix of qualitative and quantitative data. Nrby lets you take notes, marking the quality of your field objects, vehicles, and equipment. It also lets you describe the quantity of each object, which further helps you keep track of your site materials.
Nrby utilizes maintenance and object data as a way to collect data in industries such as construction. Field teams and contractors are assigned a SmartPin with an installation checklist in order to specify exactly how the installation is completed, greatly improving installation timeframes and accuracy.
2. Customer Data and CSAT
For any business, customer satisfaction (CSAT) is the driving force that brings new clients and a positive reputation. Nrby utilizes a way to collect data on consumers that empower satisfaction and improve customer service.
Customer data is usually qualitative. You are receiving opinions, suggestions, advice, and feedback. Though there are quantitative ways of collecting this customer data, for satisfaction purposes it’s more appropriately assigned as qualitative.
With Nrby, you can use the platform as a way to collect data on customers with responsiveness and understanding, leading into a great customer feedback loop. The cable industry is one such industry that benefits greatly from Nrby’s platform when it comes to customer data and satisfaction. It allows you to communicate with contractors, stakeholders, supporting staff, or any other group of people you see fit to drive efficiency within the workforce by gathering insight and being responsive.
3. Team Data
You’re more than likely working with a team or teams of people working in various locations or on different projects on the same work site. Nrby’s platform is a simple and easy way to collect data on your teams to optimize efficiency.
Team data lets you understand what each team is working on, what their progress is, and allows for easily communicable solutions when an issue arises. Team data is typically qualitative as it refers to maintaining open communication between your teams. However, from the perspective of progress alone, it can be quantitative.
Transportation is a great example of an industry that utilizes team data on Nrby’s platform as a way to collect data in an effort to create sustainable infrastructures. The platform allows its users to plan and track the progress of sustainability initiatives, maintenance projects and interviewing those who are directly involved for progress reports.
4. Progress Data
Tools that measure progress data are a great way to collect quantitative data. Typically numerical or checklist based, it is easy to see the progress of a project.
Nrby’s platform lets you collect progress data in the field so you can easily track projects and estimate a completion timeframe easily. While mostly quantitative, you can note areas along the way down the checklist that had preventable issues for future avoidance.
Both the cable and wireless industries benefit greatly from Nrby’s use of progress data tools available on the platform. As a way to collect data, these industries can pinpoint precise location data, use data mapping tools, and collect various customizable quantitative data points. This allows for more efficient installations and upgrades while tracking the progress of a project.
5. Real-time Field Data
As a purely qualitative way to collect data, making first-hand observations is also the easiest. It’s unobtrusive and lets the observer fill out their own list or questionnaire. The information is always current because it’s taken in real-time.
It is possible to obtain quantitative data, but it’s time consuming and doesn’t fulfill the full potential of collecting real-time field data. This way of collecting data can be done in essentially any field: retail, industrial, skin care, public schools, etc. this is one of its greatest advantages.
With Nrby, real-time field data is used heavily in the construction industry to report site details, organize personnel tasks, eliminate redundancy in operations, and to avoid hazards in work areas.
What data would your business like to capture and act on?