CASE STUDIES
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Bioinformatics

CLASSIFYING AND ANALYZING THOUSANDS OF SURVEY RESPONSES

About the company

Bioinformatics is part of the Science and Medicine Group which is a leading research and advisory firm serving the life sciences and diagnostic industries. Their expertise includes primary qualitative research in addition to secondary research and published reports. They leverage the world’s largest panel of scientific and clinical customers, The Science Advisory Board, for both quantitative survey research and in-depth Thought Leader Interviews. The research helps them to provide their customers with actionable intelligence to do everything from validating acquisition targets to launching new technology platforms.

The Challenge

To speed up the process of classifying hundreds or thousands of responses to open-ended questions that are part of voice-of-customer surveys. Their voice-of-customer online surveys often include open-ended questions that they needed to read through one-by-one, classify, and categorize in order to create charts to summarize the findings. The open-ended responses (500-1,500 per survey) are important because they complement the quantitative results with additional color and insights which are very helpful for our clients. However, manually reading and classifying hundreds or thousands of responses on a given project was burdensome, tedious, and possibly more prone to error.

The Solution

Adopt QDA Miner qualitative software to help with classifying survey responses.

The Results

The software assistance has reduced the amount of time required by two-thirds using different features including cluster extraction that allows them to automatically group together similar sentences and tag just one group/cluster of sentences instead of doing it one-by-one. Other features such as Query-by-Example and Code Similarity are very useful. It has made the task less tedious and improved accuracy. They used QDA Miner on several dozen projects per year with anywhere from a couple of hundred to a couple of thousand text responses that need to be classified. Even with this relatively modest throughput the investment in QDA Miner has more than paid off.

They are very pleased with the results, and they’ve since expanded the number of licenses they use.