Surveybe Features and Functionality

Cleaner, faster data. No coding skills required.

The Surveybe Designer

The surveybe Designer is a fully self-configurable system that provides an intuitive and easy to use drag-and-drop interface.

The Designer can be used on any computer running a Windows operating system, from the XP version onwards. This includes the full Windows 8 version of the operating system but not Windows 8 RT.


Screenshot of the Surveybe Designer interface The Surveybe Designer is provided as an annual, time based licence and there are no hidden software, design or programming fees to pay for the core software. The Implementer is provided free of charge with the Designer software so you can deploy your questionnaires onto appropriate interviewing hardware units at will.


Questions and Responses

Questions and response types can be chosen with ease within the Surveybe Designer interface from various options including:

  • Text boxes
  • Numerical boxes (incl. Decimals)
  • Tick boxes
  • Response Lists
  • Dynamic response lists
  • Multi-response including dynamic response options
  • Response Buttons (‘radio’ buttons)
  • Time Stamps
  • Roster/Matrix (single)
  • Linked Roster/Matrix (Multi)
  • Images

To ensure users obtain the most accurate and relevant responses they can set their own upper and lower numerical limits, require answers, specify text length, trigger comment boxes and ‘other specify’ boxes that will automatically add the ‘other’ response given to the interviewers’ list.


Examples of Question Types



Time Stamps

Surveybe allows the user to record time-stamps at any stage of the questionnaire. These are useful for both recording start and end of interviews as well as being used during pilot stages to test the length of certain sections of your questionnaire.

Validation and Skips

The Surveybe Designer enables the creation of your own validation rules, checks and skip patterns within the questionnaire design via SQL syntax. These ensure that interviewers only ask relevant questions, and only enter valid responses. There is even an in-built ‘check’ button which ensures that a questionnaire designer can test if the created rule is correctly constructed.

Defining validations in Surveybe DesignerAny errors or inconsistencies in responses can be identified and corrected at the point of data collection.

Example of validation warnings and error messages in a live interview Surveybe eliminates the costs and hassle of having to revisit respondents or the need to disregard datasets for errors that are typically found during data-cleaning phases in a traditional paper based survey.


Defining Validations in Surveybe Designer


Any errors or inconsistencies in responses can be identified and corrected at the point of data collection.


Example of Validation Warnings and Error Messages in a Live Interview


Surveybe eliminates the costs and hassle of having to revisit respondents or the need to disregard datasets for errors that are typically found during data-cleaning phases in a traditional paper based survey.


Example of Automated Skips




Using Existing Data

Surveybe users can import existing data for use in several ways:

  • To use as response lists (drop downs), or to ask questions about
  • To pre-populate fields from previous round or listing data
  • To validate/check newly collected responses against data previously collected
  • To ask new questions based on responses given in previous rounds of data collection

This flexibility comes from the easy use of .csv files so no matter what state the previous or reference data is in a simple conversion to .csv file format means it can be applicable in Surveybe.


Examples of how existing data can be used within Surveybe

Existing data can be used



The Surveybe Designer allows users to further customise surveys by providing tools to:

  • Format questions or instruction texts in different colours, font types or font sizes;
  • Choose the number of questions to have on each screen;
  • Define column widths and response field size plus choosing when to ‘wrap’ radio buttons;
  • Customise navigation through each screen, for example, options to have screens within screens or screens within rosters;
  • Choose whether to see roster (matrix) questions in table view or single view;
  • Create additional labels/instructions for your interviewers; and,
  • Create questions, labels and responses in any language or script.



Multiple Languages

Surveybe allows users to translate one questionnaire file into multiple languages without the need to build separate questionnaire files for each language. There are two primary methods of translating questionnaires:

  1. From within the Surveybe Designer interface – by manually translating each component

    Entering translated text in the Designer

  2. By importing a ‘Languages Sheet’ (in the form of an .XML file) which contains the translations into the Surveybe Designer interface.

    Entering translated text in a ‘Languages Sheet’

Within the actual interviewing interface using the Surveybe Implementer enumerators are permitted to toggle between the specified languages during the live interview:


Switching languages in the Implementer




Surveybe Implementer

Once a questionnaire has been created in the Surveybe Designer, it can be distributed freely and simply by a data manager or field supervisor onto as many hardware units as required for a survey without any extra costs. No complex programming is required as simple ‘wizards’ guide the user through the installation of the survey implementer and questionnaire import functions.

As a Survey or Data Manager, Surveybe allows greater control over the implementation of a survey. Users can monitor progress and quality of the data being collected, and send real-time amendments or updates to their field teams. Surveybe can provide near-time, same-day access to the latest data straight from the field, and data can be instantly exported in an analysis ready format.


Using Surveybe Implementer

The Surveybe Implementer has been designed to be easy to use, secure and works on a wide
range of hardware devices.


Interviewer Skills

Interviewers do not require any previous CAPI knowledge, nor is computer literacy a prerequisite for using surveybe as your data collection tool. EDI has found that actual interviewing skills are the most important skills required by an interviewer for successful data collection, not CAPI or computer skills. Many interviewers that we have worked with us have said that they never want to return to paper based interviews.


Security and Privacy

All data collected by surveybe implementers can be viewed in ‘read only’ format. The data itself remains fully secure and encrypted until it passes through the import process within the Surveybe Designer.



Surveybe Implementer has been specifically designed with mobile computers in mind. It can be used on any computer, laptop, netbook, or tablet that runs the Windows Operating System (version XP or above) and with a minimum of 2Gb RAM and a processor speed of 1.66Ghz. This includes the full Windows 8 version but not Windows 8 RT.


Collecting and Validating Responses

Collecting Responses

Collecting responses with surveybe is simple.

The interviewer is intuitively guided through the interview, only asking the questions deemed relevant to the specific respondent and collecting responses that fit within the parameters set. The interviewer can navigate forwards and backwards through the screens and can easily return ‘home’ when they require.


View Automated Responses



Validating Responses

To be extra confident that the responses are valid, they can be checked in a number of ways. At the moment of entering a response, surveybe can either disallow an entry and show an error message, or simply show an error or a warning if the response does not meet the requirements set by the survey designer.

For example:

  • entering text in a field that requires a number would not be allowed and would trigger an error message to the interviewer
  • entering an age of 125 could trigger a warning message to the interviewer that this seems unlikely and they should confirm with a comment whether or not this is correct.
  • missing answering a question would trigger an error message that the question has not been answered
  • if the calculations of data entered during interview do not fit within pre-set parameters or e.g. do not total a set amount (e.g. 100%), then a warning will be given

In all cases Surveybe has a single-click navigation to the location of each error or warning so the interviewer can immediately see and deal with the issues.

Surveybe enables you to also check responses on each screen and at the end of the interview there is a validate-all option that will re-check the whole interview and identify any remaining errors or warnings. This function can be used by both the interviewer and anyone performing quality control functions to easily identify areas to address.


Warning Message Upon Calculations



Updating and Amending Your Questionnaire

Making amendments to a questionnaire once it has already gone to the field is easy with surveybe. Simply make amendments in the surveybe designer and send out a new questionnaire version to field teams.



Data Analysis and Transfer

Surveybe enables users to have analysis-ready data straight from the field, with no additional data entry or lengthy data cleaning phase required.

In the first instance Interviewers and Supervisors can view the status of the interview files upon the Surveybe dashboard. This provides status information via the use of metadata headers to the field teams regarding the validation and error/warning count contained within the files. This facilitates efficient focus on those files which have non-optimal status records to ensure investigation and/or corrective action is taken. The metadata is also replicated within the Designer application upon import to ensure the same benefits are shared at HQ.


Metadata Display on the Implementer Dashboard


After completing in-field validation checks, users simply send auto-encrypted data straight from the field to an FTP site or via email to headquarters.

Data remains safely fully encrypted until it passes through the surveybe designer back at headquarters. Should the project context and structure be appropriate then surveybe’s auto-import capabilities can be utilised to access interview data via the Designer as soon as the interview is completed (internet connection permitting). No manual actions are required with this process.


Use of Auto-import in the Designer Interface


Once data has been decrypted, it is already in a format ready for analysis using an autogenerated Stata ‘do’ file, SPSS ‘syntax’ file or through the export in .csv file format.

The methodology and structure of surveybe data transfer demonstrates the significant advantages of new generation CAPI software.