Desktop User Guides > Professional > Interview scripting > Sample management > Sample management facilities > Quotas
You use quotas to define the requirements for the sample in terms of the numbers of respondents who have certain characteristics or combinations of characteristics, such as, age, gender, socioeconomic class, type of car owned, and so on.
Sample management quota requirements can be represented as a series of expressions, each of which defines a particular characteristic or set of characteristics and the number of interviews required with respondents having those characteristics. For example, if you want to interview 875 men and 875 women, you need two quota expressions, as follows:
Similarly, quotas based on age and gender could be defined as:
gender={male} And age<=30
gender={female} And age<=30
gender={male} And age>30
gender={female} And age>30
You define the quota requirements for projects using the Quota Setup program.
The characteristics on which you base sample management quotas must come either from the sample records or from information that the respondent enters on a pre-authentication page.
For each quota expression, UNICOM Intelligence Interviewer - Server keeps track of the following:
Target. The number of respondents required for the expression.
Completed count. The number of respondents who meet the requirements for the expression and have completed the interview.
Pending count. The number of respondents who meet the requirements for the expression whose interviews are in progress.
Rollback count. The number of respondents who met the requirements for the expression but whose interviews were terminated because the respondent also belonged to another quota whose target had already been met.
The sample management script can check these counts to determine whether an interview should go ahead.
You can specify in the sample management script when respondents are added to the Pending, Completed, and Rollback counts. Generally, respondents are added to the Completed count when they complete a questionnaire. However, you might want to add respondents when they are only part-way through the questionnaire.
Quota control in sample management is just one aspect of the whole UNICOM Intelligence Interviewer - Server quota control system. The rest of the system covers quota control in the questionnaire script, where quotas can be based on answers to questions in the script, or on a combination of script and sample management data. For example, you might have a panel of respondents who regularly participate in various surveys. Each person's sample record contains personal data such as age, gender, and the region where they live. For one particular survey, you want to interview only 875 men and 875 women. This information is available to sample management, so the quota checks can be made in the sample management script.
Another survey requires interviews with 500 male car owners and 500 female car owners. Car ownership information comes from a question in the interview so the quota control must be applied within the interview, even though gender is available at the sample management stage.
To find out more about the complete UNICOM Intelligence Interviewer - Server quota control system see Quota control.
See also
How to write a quota control system
Sample management facilities