UNICOM Intelligence Remote Administration best practices
UNICOM Intelligence Remote Administration best practices
The UNICOM Intelligence Remote Administration activity allows supervisors to monitor the remote interviewers working on a given project. The activity provides status information on each remote interviewer, including the number of interviews completed, the number of suspended interviews, and the last time the interviewer synchronized. Remote Administration best practices rely on the following key features, each of which is discussed in further detail:
Survey creation - multiple routings are used to support quota, initial entry and verification.
Quota check - are done using web surveys (before data entry).
Closed and open entry - questions are keyed on separate passes, using the same data entry routing.
Verification - a verification step is included.
Merge and report - data is merged by the field supervisor and then synchronized to the server (for analysis).
Note The following best practices may not be suitable for all data entry work-flows, and may not work for all data entry operations.
The following diagram illustrates a typical Remote Administration workflow.
Survey creation
Surveys are created in UNICOM Intelligence Professional or UNICOM Intelligence Author with multiple routings that support quota, data entry, and verification. The following routings are created:
Quota - Because quota control is not implemented for data entry, a web survey must be used to check the quota. Quota data is not shared with data entry; a separate data entry record is added to the database. This routing asks the quota questions and then accepts or rejects the survey based on the quota results. The case number is also entered and can be used to link the quota survey with the data entry survey.
Data Entry - This routing is used for both closed and open data entry. A CaseStatus variable is used to track the survey stages and can be displayed in the case list, which allows operators and field supervisors to easily see the case state. The CaseStatus variable is initialized to {InProgressClosed} until all closed questions have been answered. CaseStatus switches to {CompletedClosed} when all closed questions have been answered. At this point, the routing's closed section exits and the case is suspended. An available operator can then restart the case and the script displays the open questions.
Verification - This routing is used for partial or full verification and can be setup to ask any question.
The survey are activated for personal interviewing after the routings are created.
Quota check
The quota check operator uses a web browser to check quotas for each paper document and divides the documents into accepted and rejected stacks.
The field supervisor synchronizes the project and saves a deployment package to a shared drive for the data entry operators. The synchronized package contains quota information, but the quota information is not used or transferred to the deployment package.
The field supervisor also receives the stack of accepted paper documents from the Quota Check step. The supervisor divides this stack further to create data entry batches.
Closed entry
The supervisor distributes a batch of documents to a data entry operator. The data entry operator imports the deployment package and creates a batch. The batch name and notes are based on the information cover sheet that is distributed with each batch.
The data entry operator then starts a case and enters the case number and closed data for the case. The data entry operator works through each survey in the batch and may sometimes suspend a case if more information is required.
When a case is suspended and later restarted, the script is setup to allow the operator to confirm that he or she wants to enter closed questions. After the batch is completed, it is passed to the field manager who may pass it on for open entry or verification. A batch can contain suspended cases due to illegible survey entries or other quality control reasons.
Open entry
It is assumed that the coding process is performed separately, using copies of the paper surveys. Codes for the open-end responses are then entered into the original metadata and the project is reactivated for synchronization. It is also assumed that open entry operators will choose a code based on the paper survey's text response, or that the paper surveys are coded separately (by having a coder write the coded response in the survey).
The updated project, including code frames, is synchronized to the field supervisor when code frames are created after the project has started the data entry process. The field supervisor updates the deployment package on the shared drive with the metadata version that contains the new categories for coding open-ends. Operators assigned to open entry import two packages for the same project; one package contains the batch, and the other contains the updated metadata version. The import order is not important as UNICOM Intelligence Interviewer uses the batch's latest metadata for the existing cases.
The open operator restarts suspended cases when the CaseStatus is {CompletedClosed}, and enters the open information (there may be cases that are suspended at this point). Once the open operator has completed the batch, it is passed it back to the field manager who can then pass it on for verification. The batch can still contain suspended cases due to illegible survey entries or other quality control reasons.
The verification operator opens the assigned batch, selects the Verification option, and then verifies cases. Once verification is complete, the operator saves the batch to the shared drive.
Merge and report
The field manager imports all completed batches.
Upload data
The field manager initiates a synchronization that sends data to the server.
Analysts can use the server project to analyze the data. Analysts should generally filter-out quota only data, as well as any suspended cases.
Quality control
Paper surveys can go to quality control at any stage in the process. When the supervisor receives a stack of paper surveys back from quality control, the supervisor can select the affected batches and then create and distribute a single deployment package. The supervisor can also distribute the paper surveys and let the operators determine the affected batches by importing the appropriately named files from the shared drives. After the batches have been updated, they can be re-imported and resynchronized.
White papers: Introduction