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Customer Surveying
Amazon Sales Rank:
# 41,884 (3-23-06)
Customer Surveying: A Guidebook for Service Managers (a.k.a., The Survey Guidebook) by Dr. Fred Van Bennekom and published by the Customer Service Press, is designed to guide survey project managers to effectively plan and manage their own survey research projects.  It is not an encyclopedia on the subject of customer satisfaction surveys or a textbook on survey theory.  Rather, its 256 pages aim to provide the tools the survey novice needs to collect real and useful information about customers needs or perceptions -- or research other groups of interest such as employees.  The Survey Guidebook introduces theories and concepts, but always with a focus on practical application.  It is part of the Survey Mentor product suite, but can also be purchased separately.  
The term survey guide is used very explicitly here.  A guide in the classic sense helps show the path through unknown territory, helping the journeyer to avoid pitfalls, but also answering questions along the way and pointing out features that enhance the value of the trek.
The Survey Guidebook plots a path for the surveyor from planning the project, designing the questionnaire, administering the survey, to reporting the results. A trail map is used as a metaphor for the typical trail or path a surveyor would follow in the life of a survey project.  At each stop on the trail, the tasks are described and the pros and cons of various options are outlined.  Much of the book uses an "FAQ" format, anticipating the questions a novice surveyor might have and answering them concisely in a bulleted format.
The Survey Guidebook pays particular attention to options for questionnaire design and potential pitfalls.  Chapter 4 describes how the attributes for survey questions can be identified, then covers all the various types of survey questions from nominal to ordinal to interval scalar questions.  Scale construction is covered in some depth.  The next chapter turns to survey administration, covering the advantages and disadvantages of each of the major survey administration methods.  A latter chapter explores web and email surveying techniques in even more depth.  Sample size requirements and statistical accuracy are also covered, along with ideas on how to increase response rates.

Fred Van Bennekom and his Customer Surveying book.
The sixth chapter of this new version of the Survey Guidebook contains far more information on analyzing a set of survey data, illustrating how to use Excel to do the analysis.  Screenshots will help you learn how to apply the spreadsheet formulas to your own survey data analysis.
Throughout the book, many figures and charts have been added, totaling 67 in the book.  Four exercises are also now included to help readers practice their new-found skills.
To order, please use our secure on-line order form.  Or contact us by phone or email. Great Brook is currently offering the book for US $29.95, which is 34% off the list price of $44.95.  That price includes USPS Media Mail ground shipping within the US.  USPS Priority Mail shipping is $2 more, and overnight delivery is available in the US.  The book is also available through various service industry bookstores and Amazon.
Occassionally, we have books that have been used as display copies or that have some other minor damage to them.  These we sell at a discount, typically $20 to $25 depending on condition.  Please contact us by phone or email for availability of "B stock" copies of the book.
If you prefer to have hands' on instruction, consider our Survey Design Workshop.  Workshop registration includes a copy of the Survey Guidebook!  If you buy the Survey Guidebook now to get a flavor of the Workshop, we'll credit you the purchase price should you attend the Workshop -- but only if you purchase through Great Brook.

Before you do your next survey project,
get assistance from the Customer Surveying Guidebook!

Table of Contents
What People are Saying
About the Survey Guidebook...
Table of Figures & Exercises
Chapter 1:  Basics of Customer Surveying
What is a Survey?
What is Sampling?
Why Conduct a Customer Survey?
Customer Loyalty Research Portfolio: Surveys and Beyond
The ROI of Customer Loyalty Programs
The Marketing Aspects of Customer Surveying
Types of Surveys
Specific Purpose
Periodic Surveys
Transaction-Driven Surveys
Chapter 2:  Pitfalls on the Survey Trail
Instrument Design & Survey Quality
Survey Administration & Survey Quality
Chapter 3:  Survey Project Management
Key Stages of a Survey Project
Planning a Project:
Chapter 4:  Designing the Questionnaire
Identifying Questions to Ask - Basic Research
Personal Interviews
Focus Groups
Documentary Data
Analyzing the Data
Drafting the Questionnaire
Elements of a Questionnaire
Initial Questions
Section Headings
Summary and Thank You
Sequencing Questions
Question Formats
Data Types
Unstructured Question Format
Structured Question Formats:
     Multiple Choice or Categorical
     Ordinal Rating
     Interval Rating
     Ratio Scales
Guidelines for Questionnaire Design
Pilot Testing
Chapter 5:  Administering the Survey
Choosing an Administration Method
Criteria for Evaluating Methods
     Postal Mail Surveys
     Telephone Surveys
     Electronic Mail Surveys
     Web Form Surveys
     Surveying "by Disk"
     Interactive Voice Response (IVR)
Targeting the Population & Selecting the Sample
Taking a Census
Random Samples
Stratified Samples
Determining the Sample Size & Sample Distribution Size
Determining the confidence of the results
Pre-administration Notes
Sending the Survey
Increasing Response Rates
Follow-Up Reminder Notes
Thank You Gifts
Use of Third-Party Vendors
Collecting the Results
Chapter 6:  Analyzing & Presenting Results
Plan of Analysis
Statistical Analysis
Determining the Typical Response
Describing the Range of Responses
Descriptive Statistics - The Easy Way
Bivariate & Multivariate Statistics
Other Statistical Tests
Pivot Tables
Analyzing Textual Data
The Written Report & Management Presentation
The Emperor's Clothes Dilemma
Management Presentation
Data Tables
Charting and Graphing the Data
Pie Charts
Bar Charts & Column Charts
Stacked Bar & Stacked Column Charts
Scatter Plots
Chapter 7: Taking Action
Follow-up Research
Service Recovery Actions
Operational Quality Control: Statistical Process Control Charts
Chapter 8:  Survey Automation Tools & Survey Outsourcing
Survey Automation Tools
Benefits of Using Survey Automation Tools
The Role of Automation Tools in a Survey Project
Selecting Survey Automation Tools
Pricing of Survey Automation Tools
Hidden Dangers with Automation Tools
Sources of Survey Automation Tools & Outsourcing Organizations
Appendix: Discussion of Exercises
About the Book
About the Author

Publisher: Customer Service Press
256 pages
Softbound binding, 6.5" x 9"
67 figures and charts
4 exercises
Price from Great Brook: US $ 29.95, including Media Mail ground shipping by USPS.  

Just wanted to let you know I received the book and I thought it was fabulous.  It really helped in my research for a web seminar called "Satisfaction Guaranteed: Conducting a Call Center Satisfaction Audit". There are many good books out there on this topic, but yours really stands out in terms of its practical, step-by-step approach and excellent examples.  I am now a big fan!
Penny Reynolds, Senior Partner,
The Call Center School, Clarksville, TN
You are just a great writer -- very conversational in your style, to say nothing of the wonderful insight into the questionnaire design, statistical analysis, and management reporting. I also really liked the questions you added to help identify "what's wrong with this question.
Ellen Carney, VP Marketing, Thrupoint
Dr. Van Bennekom's experience is real and he clearly communicates his message so that any support manager will understand who, how, and why to survey their customers, and how to get useful results that will make a positive impact on their organization.
Richard Reiter, Director, Technical Support, NetManage, North Andover, MA
I was a complete novice, but was asked to do the customer satisfaction surveys for our department. I attended a workshop conducted by Dr. Van Bennekom, and with the help of his guidebook our survey efforts have been a great success.
Sandee Kennedy, Manager, Data Resources,
Sabre, Ft. Worth, TX
I just have to express my gratitude for your Customer Surveying book! I train our customers on the e-talk Survey product, including "consultative training" on designing effective questions, when to survey, what to do with the information gathered, etc. I have read large amounts of information on the subject of surveys and by far, yours is the most straight forward, easy to understand, and comprehensive. Thank you for making my job easier, and my customers happier!
Carol Leonetti, Instructional Designer and Instructor, e-talk Corporation, Irving, TX
Fred, I loved the book. It has really helped me work more effectively with our outside vendor. I had very little experience and understanding of surveys making it difficult for me to really grasp what the company was telling me. After reading the book, I really am able to take a more active role in the process.
Mary McKellar, Digital Insight
As an officer of a not-for-profit organization, I was tasked to research member wants and attitudes. I've found Customer Surveying Guidebook book to be a valuable guide in designing and executing the survey project so as to obtain usable, accurate results. The book answers questions I would never have thought to ask.
Doug Markley, Treasurer, Landlords, Inc., Overland Park, KS
After discovering Dr. Van Bennekom's survey workshop and unique approach to survey design, our entire company adopted his sound methodology. His thought provoking and well-organized survey workshops, complemented with the Survey Guidebook, should be attended by anyone who is serious about understanding the power of a well-crafted survey.
Chase Fraser, President,
MarketQuiz. Inc., Dallas TX
Fred's thorough, rigorous approach to survey design and analysis is clearly presented in the Customer Surveying Guidebook. He asks the right questions to prompt deeper thinking about the design of the questionnaire and the interpretation of results. Reading his Guidebook will help you develop those inquisitive traits that add so much value to a survey program.
Paul Kowal, President, Kowal Associates, Inc., Boston, MA
The Customer Surveying Guidebook covers important topics in step-by-step detail, helping the novice survey project manager learn how to develop a customer survey program. Beyond the excellent content, the book's real strength lies in Dr. Van Bennekom's presentation of otherwise dry material in a very easy-to-understand, approachable way - with a touch of humor. The book is a pleasure to read.
David Keifer, Manager, Global Customer Support Services, Eaton Cutler-Hammer, Pittsburgh PA
A customer satisfaction survey seemed almost dangerous - I was really afraid of putting a lot of work into a project and getting misleading or unusable information. Now, though, I've got enough understanding of both good design and the perils and pitfalls of surveying that I'm confident my time and effort will be well-spent.
Martha Lundgren, Manager, Information Center, Texas Association of School Boards
The art of crafting surveys and analyzing their results provides, arguably, the most important application for statistics. I learned how to avoid pitfalls and biases in this concise but lucid presentation.
Mark D. Joseph, IT Manager, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection
As manager of Network Technology for the Bank of Montreal's Corporate University, Fred's survey methodology has been instrumental in my annual success. The improved understanding of my clients and business challenges has helped my team focus its improvement efforts. All of this has enhanced my team's reputation for being current and insightful which always contributed to my clients' business successes.
Dan Simonini, Manager, Network Services Institute for Learning, Bank of Montréal, L'Academie de la Banque de Montréal, Scarborough, Ontario
Your book identifies all the keys aspects of a successful survey project - proper planning, designing the survey instrument, the process of administering the survey, gathering the results, analyzing the results, reporting the results, and taking action. I see the information in this book helping us a great deal in developing proper questions for the surveys we are developing for various aspects of our customer relationships we are measuring. The wisdom in your book demonstrates that if we don't invest the time in developing an exceptional survey instrument we'll be making decisions on bad data and possibly taking action on the wrong things.
Kevin Ritter, Customer Support Manager,
Firstlogic, Lacrosse, WI
Your book is so well written and I studied it so hard, that when one of the company marketing guys reviewed my survey (he has a lot of experience in customer satisfaction surveys), he told me it was great and nothing needed to change. He said that when I emailed him the survey and he read it, that he knew I either had a lot of experience writing surveys or else I did a lot of studying.
A recent but anonymous reader

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