SRA Research Group http://www.sra-researchgroup.com Providing market research for better decision making Thu, 19 Jan 2017 16:50:06 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.7.6 Polling versus surveys – are they different and how reliable are they? http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/news/polling-versus-surveys-are-they-different-and-how-reliable-are-they/ Mon, 15 Feb 2016 16:11:04 +0000 http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/?p=1184 For months now, many of us have been barraged with ongoing media about presidential polls – something that we can all expect to escalate as4NYSZ1US caucuses and primaries occur.

First, what are the differences between these two methods – polling versus surveys?

Polling is frequently employed in political races to obtain immediate feedback regarding generally one or at maximum two question areas with limited analysis of data. Some are well-structured and want to get truthful answers as to voter preference for a particular candidate. At their worst, many are a form of push polls that attempt to operate under the guise of real market research, with their single goal being to sway peoples’ opinions as opposed to acquiring information.

Many other polls popular with media outlets (think of the polls magazines, newspapers, and TV stations employ) are truly just for entertainment value or a method to create stories that can be broadcast. They totally lack reliability and an honest sampling plan. And, of course, there are pop up or internet polls geared only toward one thing – getting your contact information and/or selling.

SRA surveys are generally conducted to gather statistically valid data to test awareness among targeted populations regarding products, services, or programs geared toward them and to determine where our clients stand in relationship to the competition. SRA also develops and launches surveys designed to obtain customer satisfaction levels and resultant NPS (Net Promoter Scores) which function as a leading indicator of an organization’s ability to gain market share and create sustainable growth.

Our clients use surveys to obtain needed strategic insights on the viability of a new product or service before an expensive launch. In addition, surveys are used to obtain reaction to and likely success/direction of a rebranding of an entire organization or an existing product or service.

Surveys are significantly different than polls since they usually address multiple question areas or concepts and generally result in a comprehensive analysis of what the data means with recommended direction provided.

Market research surveys are guided by:

  • Development of a sound sample that will allow for detailed analysis and statistical validity of no less than 95% +/- 5% variance
  • Design of a questionnaire that is impartial and worded in such a way that all respondents process the questions in an identical manner
  • Processes put in place that ensure respondent anonymity
  • Usage of multiple methods to ensure representation of the targeted audiences (these may include, but are not limited to, cell phone, online, landline, intercept, etc.)
  • Stringent training and monitoring of interviewers
  • Client access to monitor interviews live
  • Total transparency which entails client receipt of disposition of all contacts made and completions
  • Adherence to quality standards and guidelines developed by the leading survey research trade organization  in the country –  CASRO (Council of American Survey Research Organizations, www.casro.org)

As to the reliability of polls and surveys, this rests totally with the skill of the people involved in the process and their ability to design and launch an impartial questionnaire in an ethical and well thought out manner that carries statistical validity, as well as their ability to navigate the changing environment of how to best reach qualified respondents.

There are many polls where the accuracy has been abysmal. One example is the 1992 presidential race where it was predicted Bill Clinton had no chance of beating George H.W. Bush who was leading Clinton by over 20% at one point. As we know, Bush did not win that election. However, data does show that many Gallup polls over the last four presidential elections were quite accurate, with deviations of less than 2% from election results.

The viability of market research surveys is strong, particularly when an organization sponsoring the research is using a CASRO firm (of which SRA is a member) that abides by the highest levels of quality and ethics. The ability to replicate surveys to track results over time is another indicator of accuracy. The most valuable indicator of SRA surveys is we provide documentable data that helps our clients succeed.

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SRA Research Group is a solution-based consultancy with the vision for our clients based upon the fundamentals we continue to deliver – Strategy, Results and Achievement – since our founding 30 years ago. Our firm provides exemplary research services and support to organizations geared toward understanding and measuring how to best keep their customers and clients satisfied. We are a trusted partner that helps frame issues, develop solutions, and refine opportunities.

 

Contact SRA at (561) 744-5662

Visit our website at www.sra-researchgroup.com

Follow us on Twitter @SRAResearchGp

Follow us on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/company/sra-research-group

 

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How the Affordable Care Act Will Impact Hospitals and Health Systems in 2016 http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/news/how-the-affordable-care-act-will-impact-hospitals-and-health-systems-in-2016/ Tue, 08 Dec 2015 14:32:51 +0000 http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/?p=1150 As we move into 2016, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) will continue to impact the healthcare industry in a variety of ways which executives willACA and how it will impact hospitals need to be prepared to address.  Here are some of the key items for healthcare executives to-do lists as we move into a new year based on our work in the healthcare industry.

Be prepared for increased demand for patient services.

The ACA has increased the number of patients with health insurance coverage which will increase the demand for care in many hospitals and health systems, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.  While these increases in patient traffic will likely boost revenues and lower uncompensated care costs for hospitals, it will also stretch the capacity of some hospitals to their limits. The impact on specific hospitals will also vary depending on whether the hospitals are in states that expanded Medicaid coverage through the ACA.

Look for patients to do more price shopping when it comes to medical care.

According to the Wall Street Journal, there were 95 hospital mergers and acquisitions last year.  Elements of the Affordable Care Act encourage these consolidations since they can have a positive impact in terms of promoting best practices and quality initiatives when done in a competitive marketplace.  However, mergers and acquisitions also have the potential to create monopolies in some areas which often result in higher prices and fewer choices for patients.  This may also cause increases in health insurance deductibles and copays for patients and higher taxes to support Medicare and Medicaid.  With costs going up, more and more patients are likely going to be asking for prices up front and shopping for lower costs on their medical care, particularly when it comes to routine and diagnostic tests.  We’ve talked with consumers about pricing transparency around the country and many tell us they have started to look at the costs they will incur before selecting a healthcare provider. This is a growing practice and we expect this trend to continue with more consumers “shopping” healthcare.

Evaluate what impact specialty healthcare competition will have on your product lines.

A number of organizations are looking to expand their market share in specific product lines across the country.  For example, McKesson Corporation acquired U.S. Oncology, one of the largest oncology groups, and now has more than 1,300 oncologists in its network, as well as controlling a $2.8 billion portion of the cancer drugs they prescribe, according to an article in Forbes.  In fact, this group serves nearly 20% of all U.S. cancer patients. In addition, other specialty cancer hospitals are being opened all over the country, including top brands like MD Anderson Cancer Center which continues to open centers and increase affiliations. While these expansions may bring care standards and clinical trials to areas where they are not currently available, they will also be taking market share from hospitals which currently offer these services in particular areas.  Our work shows that health systems need to continually promote and monitor consumer opinions about specific product lines or they risk not being in a consumer’s consideration set when they need specific care.

Prepare for the shift to payment for successful outcomes, not volume.

The Affordable Care Act has provisions which will require hospitals to focus efforts on successfully treating patients to get paid, not just completing procedures.  While still paid for volume today, hospitals will need to evaluate how they provide patient care as the system changes from fee-for-service to pay-for-performance.  To stay financially solvent, hospitals will need to cut waste, collaborate on new payment models such as ACOs, collaborate with physicians, patients and payers to coordinate care, invest in physician groups and primary care to keep patients healthier, and employ big data healthcare analytics to use trends from patient data to drive new strategies and decision-making, according to Becker’s Hospital Review.  By conducting research with physicians, nurses, and administrations around the country, we are able to help healthcare organizations understand what they struggle with in terms of outcomes so they can work to address issues which lead to better results for patients.

While these are only some of the implications of the ACA on hospitals, having the following steps on your to-do list will put you in a better position to start 2016, so consider:

  1. Evaluate your capacity by facility and product line to ensure you can handle increased volume.
  2. Determine how far you want to move toward published pricing and pricing transparency as more patients shop for healthcare.
  3. Look at the existing and potential competition for your most profitable product lines to determine where you may have to fight for market share.
  4. Review patient data and gather staff input to determine how and where efforts need to be focused to ensure positive outcomes for patients.

About SRA Research Group

SRA Research Group is a solution-based consultancy with the vision to help our clients by delivering the fundamentals – Strategy, Results and Achievement – since our founding 30 years ago. Our firm provides research services and support to healthcare organizations geared toward understanding and measuring how to attract and retain patients and prospects. We are a trusted partner that helps frame issues, develop solutions, and refine opportunities.

Contact SRA at (561) 744-5662

Visit our website at www.sra-researchgroup.com

Follow us on Twitter @SRAResearchGp

Follow us on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/company/sra-research-group

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Taking a Look Back While Looking Forward – Over 30 Years http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/news/taking-a-look-back-while-looking-forward-over-30-years/ Mon, 30 Nov 2015 20:17:39 +0000 http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/?p=1146 As SRA marks its 30th year in business this month, we are reflecting on where we started in 1985 and where we are now.SRA newsletter

Taking a look back to 1985 when Ronald Reagan was in the White House and Mikhail Gorbachev was running the Soviet Union:

  • The first version of Windows 1.0 was released
  • The number of cellphones in the country totaled slightly over 340,000
  • The typical smaller firm had one microcomputer

SRA had a computer room that was shared by all staff at the time!

  • Few Americans had a computer and, according to Commodore Magazine (September 1987), “15% of American homes have a computer and the other 85% don’t seem the least bit interested. The general feeling is that the home computer is a fad and there is really no practical purpose for a computer in the home.”
  • The number of fax machines in the U.S. exploded to 500,000
  • Coca-Cola changed its 99 year formula to release the New Coke which was a colossal failure

The Coca-Cola story is a perfect example of the value of market research and how the lack of well thought out and developed research led an international behemoth to its knees. While they did exhaustive taste testing and thought they had developed the perfect New Coke, they lost sight and had no idea of the loyalty customers had to their existing product. It is rumored that the CEO of Coca-Cola in 1985 received a letter from a customer requesting that he provide his autograph since “in years to come, the signature of the dumbest executive in American business history may be worth a fortune.”

While the world is a different place than it was in 1985 and the tools and methods used to conduct professional research and the people working in the industry have dramatically changed, the value in market research has remained the same.

SRA delivered the following to our clients in 1985 and continues to do the same in 2015:

  • Provide tactical and strategic insights to drive sound decision making
  • Understand the needs of existing customers and targeted prospects and competitive position Provide recommendations to create opportunities to make your organization sustainable and successful

Today, the mantra we live by every day for projects we undertake is that it must:

  • Be fast
  • Provide actionable results
  • Be cost effective

The methods and tools involved in market research have changed with reliance on all aspects of technology key, in spite of the fact that some audiences still require traditional data gathering which involves phone surveys, in-person focus groups, and depth interviews. Almost all research projects which SRA conducts today are multi-modal meaning we use:

  • Landlines
  • Cellphones
  • Social media
  • Online focus groups
  • Research panels
  • Big data
  • Ethnography

Lastly, we want to take this opportunity to thank all the clients we have had the privilege to serve over many decades, with great anticipation to continue being of service to you and contributing, as a partner, to your future success.

About SRA

SRA Research Group is a solution-based consultancy with the vision for our clients based upon the fundamentals we continue to deliver – Strategy, Results and Achievement – since our founding 30 years ago. Our firm provides research services and support to organizations geared toward understanding and measuring how to best keep their customers and clients satisfied. We are a trusted partner that helps frame issues, develop solutions, and refine opportunities.

Contact SRA at (561) 744-5662

Visit our website at www.sra-researchgroup.com

Follow us on Twitter @SRAResearchGp

Follow us on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/company/sra-research-group

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Improving your Brand Image and Competitive Position http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/news/improving-your-brand-image-and-competitive-position/ Wed, 30 Sep 2015 18:37:51 +0000 http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/?p=1130 Hospital brand

SRA Research Group has been conducting research in the healthcare industry for many years. By being forward thinking, innovative, and embracing change, we help all of our clients prosper and move ahead of the competition. This is one of a series of articles which discusses some of the things we have observed in our various healthcare research projects.

Perceptions of your healthcare brand impact your position in today’s competitive marketplace.

Many years ago, hospitals delivered healthcare to their local community and didn’t have to worry about the competition or consumer marketing. Today, regulation and oversight are intense and cost pressures can constrict margins. However, you can control and shape your brand image to impact your competitive position in the marketplace.

In recently conducted studies, three-quarters of those interviewed said they or a family member had been treated at a hospital in the last three years. Yes, many of them went to the nearest emergency department to obtain care for a child who had an accident or a parent with a medical concern. However, quite a few drove past the closest facility to another hospital or healthcare system. One reason they selected another hospital or system is a strong brand image. In fact, we have seen that both name recognition and brand image are considered among the most valuable assets of a health system.

It’s important to strongly support your organization’s brand.

Having a healthcare brand image that resonates with patients and prospects is critical when fighting to sustain and gain market share. Whether a patient needs attention for a less serious medical problem or has a serious medical condition which requires highly specialized care, you want your organization to be the one they think of first. In addition, you want them to think of you for expertise in the particular product lines where you specialize. Whether it’s cardiac or cancer care or those profitable elective orthopedic procedures such as joint replacements, you want to be perceived as the best place around for patients to receive treatment.

There are a number of successful methods which we see used on a regular basis to support the creation and maintenance of strong brand image for hospitals and health systems. Systems that do it well employ a systematic mix of brand building television advertising along with product line specific content to make them the first place patients think of and to establish expertise in their specialties. Today’s locally targeted cable advertising can make this strategy affordable even for small marketing budgets. The best hospitals and systems are also heavily involved in their local communities by supporting a variety of events and causes, as well as being engaged in community related efforts. The key to all your efforts is to be consistent and have a continuous presence since there are many competitors who are working diligently to steal your market share.

Do your homework to make sure your branding efforts don’t get torpedoed.

In our work, we have seen several things which have a negative impact on the brand image of hospitals and health systems. In a number of projects where we have been asked to “find out what the problem is,” surveys and focus groups with patients and prospects have revealed legacy issues which still haunt a hospital. This is where the intervention of a seasoned PR firm can really be helpful to defeat the remnants of past problems and clean up old perceptions for your brand.

Another thing to do is to be sure your facilities don’t look tired or dated. Our research shows that patients equate old looking structures and dated interiors with poor quality care, while modern and up-to-date facilities promote a healing environment. In addition, it is important to have well-designed waiting areas to accommodate the needs of both patients and their family members. These updates can be a major boost to the image of your hospital and health system.

Investments in brand image and its impact on competitiveness are not that hard to define.

While the potential payoffs from investments in improved brand image can appear hard to define, our successful clients report substantial increases in patients as one measurable result. In addition, our work measuring key metrics such as top-of-mind awareness, image, and product line usage tend to correlate highly with increases in the number of patients.

And remember, if your organization is not actively and effectively working to improve your brand image, it’s likely you are losing ground and market share to your competition. That’s not a strategy for long-term success.

Next in this series…

“The influence of ACA today and in the future.”

“The battle for talent and the nursing shortage.”

About SRA Research Group

SRA Research Group is a solution-based consultancy with the vision to help our clients by delivering the fundamentals – Strategy, Results and Achievement – since our founding 30 years ago. Our firm provides research services and support to healthcare organizations geared toward understanding and measuring how to attract and retain patient and prospects. We are a trusted partner that helps frame issues, develop solutions, and refine opportunities.

Contact SRA at (561) 744-5662

Visit our website at www.sra-researchgroup.com

Follow us on Twitter @SRAResearchGp

Follow us on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/company/sra-research-group

 

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Staying relevant in a changing environment http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/news/staying-relevant-in-a-changing-environment/ Wed, 09 Sep 2015 14:56:44 +0000 http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/?p=1125 There are far too many examples of corporations who have lost touch with what their current and future customers want and need. As a result, they have seen their fortunes plummet and, in some cases, have been forced to declare bankruptcy. A textbook case is Blockbuster which, as the story goes, some 15 years ago, was approached by Netflix, a new kid on the block, about working together to create an online brand that could be cross-sold in retail outlets. It has been widely reported that the Netflix executive got laughed out of the Blockbuster offices. Fast forward 15 years and Netflix is almost a $30 billion corporation, while Blockbuster retail outlets now rest in the dinosaur graveyard.Staying Relevant

Every day, the lessons we see with our clients show that all aspects of business are rapidly and dramatically changing, with key factors contributing to ongoing change being:

  • Globalization
  • Smarter, empowered and more demanding customers
  • Growth of customization and personalization
  • Dominance of technology

We also see that while change happens continually, some corporations think they can get by without evaluating what current and future customers need and want and continue to follow an outdated rule book.   Playing it safe with what works today creates a stage for obsolesce. Without change, it is impossible to remain a relevant and sustainable organization.

One of the key factors to remaining relevant is listening to and carefully anticipating the direction and needs of existing and prospective customers. For example, many years ago, SRA conducted numerous qualitative projects for a prestigious newspaper to determine how to appeal to younger audiences. These younger prospects told us everything they touch and use is getting smaller and immediate and told us- . “Why can’t the print news media understand this?” You probably know how this story played out. We also scratch our head when seeing Patek Philippe watch ads that show an older man sitting with a young boy with the tagline being, “You never actually own a Patek Philippe. You merely look after it for the next generation.” We wonder if this young boy has ever heard of smartphones and Apple watches that provide many apps in addition to getting the time?

In understanding current and prospective customer needs, we have found our successful clients are those who frequently reach out to customers and develop processes to understand what their targeted prospects want and need. These efforts help keep our clients ahead of the obsolescence curve and let them make business decisions with clarity and knowledge, as opposed to opinions shared at executive meetings.

Our mantra for staying relevant is LISTEN!

L = learn and pay attention to what customers and prospects want and need

I = include customers in decision making through customer engagement groups, such as forums, advisors, and boards

S = see what your customers and prospects are doing/saying via social media listening, ethnography, online communities, and primary research

T = touch your customers frequently with meaningful and relevant information and offers

E = engage your customers with your brand to create loyalty

N = nurture relationship with them so they think of your brand first

Staying in business means staying ahead of the curve and adapting to meet the changing needs of current and future customers. Otherwise, you may find yourself and your company without a reason to be in business.

About SRA

SRA Research Group is a solution-based consultancy with the vision for our clients based upon the fundamentals we continue to deliver – Strategy, Results and Achievement – since our founding 30 years ago. Our firm provides research services and support to organizations geared toward understanding and measuring how to best keep their customers and clients satisfied. We are a trusted partner that helps frame issues, develop solutions, and refine opportunities.

Contact SRA at (561) 744-5662

Visit our website at www.sra-researchgroup.com

Follow us on Twitter at @SRAResearchGp

Follow us on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/company/sra-research-group

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The Incredible Value Net Promoter Score (NPS) Can Bring to Your Company http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/news/the-incredible-value-net-promoter-score-nps-can-bring-to-your-company/ Wed, 26 Aug 2015 18:11:14 +0000 http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/?p=1115 NPSpicture3The Incredible Value Net Promoter Score (NPS) Can Bring to Your Company

Wouldn’t it be nice if everyone you do business with would tell their colleagues and friends to use your company? Would you at least like that to happen more often?

For many years, companies have studied consumer behavior to understand who is in their target audience, how customers think, and what drives them to purchase one product or service over another. Researchers have employed a variety of strategies to uncover the motivations, attitudes, and issues which drive decisions, while marketers have struggled to translate this into the 4 P’s – Product, Price, Place, and Promotion. However, it was the question which was asked by C-level executives (What do consumers think of our brand?) which lead to development of the Net Promoter Score (NPS) process.

NPS is basically a simple measurement.

It is based on the premise that if enough people recommend you, you should be able to grow your business. In case you are not familiar with it, NPS in its most basic form asks the customer two questions:

  • On a scale of 0 to 10, what is your willingness to recommend our company to friend or colleague?
  • Why do you give that rating?

To get the actual score, respondents are classified into three groups based on their rating of willingness to recommend:

  • Respondents giving a rating of 9 or 10 are classified as promoters
  • Respondents giving a rating of 7 or 8 are classified as neutral
  • Respondents giving a rating from 0 to 6 are classified as detractors

The percentage of respondents that are promoters minus the percentage of respondents that are detractors gives you the NPS.

However, we have found that valuable NPS is not that simple.

Based on the work we’ve done at SRA, we have devised additional questions to really understand what each respondent would say if someone asked them about your company. We use these responses to validate each respondent’s classification. In doing so, we’re looking for distinctions between:

  • Active promoters
  • Passive promoters
  • Those who are happy, but specify why their needs fit your offerings
  • Those that are truly on the fence, giving bad points along with good points
  • Then there are customers that might like you to some extent, but prefer a competitor
  • Those that are not satisfied, but won’t tell everyone they know
  • And finally, customers who are active detractors or trolls

This also lets us suggest ways to address customer issues. 

More importantly, we know how to identify what needs to improve so you can be a better partner to your customers. By clarifying where a customer truly stands on the promoter/detractor scale, it becomes much easier to determine what needs to be done to improve your score. In our NPS work, we don’t just provide a score and move on. We help companies focus on the “low hanging fruit.” We can help identify what needs to happen in order for passive promoters to become active promoters and fence sitters to move up to passive or active promoters. We also recommend targets for subsequent measurements and evaluate goal achievement to improve products and services.

This is the difference that makes NPS a valuable tool rather than just a number. 

About SRA

SRA Research Group is a solution-based consultancy with the vision for our clients based upon the fundamentals we continue to deliver – Strategy, Results and Achievement – since our founding 30 years ago. Our firm provides research services and support to organizations geared toward understanding and measuring how to best keep their customers and clients satisfied. We are a trusted partner that helps frame issues, develop solutions, and refine opportunities.

Contact SRA at (561) 744-5662

Visit our website at www.sra-researchgroup.com

Follow us on Twitter @SRAResearchGp

Follow us on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/company/sra-research-group

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FDOT Research – Prevention and Early Recognition of Florida’s At-Risk Drivers http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/news/fdot-research-prevention-and-early-recognition-of-floridas-at-risk-drivers/ Mon, 03 Aug 2015 20:43:09 +0000 http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/?p=1056 Current Situation
Florida is well known for retirement and winter homes. Currently, over 18% of Floridians are 65 or over, but by 2030, this is expected to be over 27%. To meet the transportation challenges of an aging population, State Traffic Engineering and Operations Office of the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), in partnership with Florida State University’s Pepper Institute on Aging and Public Policy, created the Safe Mobility for Life Coalition (SMFLC). The mission of the SMFLC is to improve the safety, access, and mobility of Florida’s aging road users by implementing a broad Aging Road User Strategic Safety Plan (ARUSSP) to reduce their crash rate. To effectively meet the goal of its Prevention and Early Recognition Emphasis Area, one of ten emphasis areas within the ARUSSP, the SMFLC needed to establish a baseline and assess the current situation and level of knowledge among the health care community and other adult service organizations.

More older Floridians are using Florida roads, whether driving, walking, cycling, or riding. Assuring their safety and their safe use of roadways is an ongoing project for the Florida Department of Transportation.

More older Floridians are using Florida roads, whether driving, walking, cycling, or riding. Assuring their safety and their safe use of roadways is an ongoing project for the Florida Department of Transportation.

Research Objectives
Researchers from SRA Research Group Inc. assessed Florida’s health care community and older adult service organizations to determine their baseline levels of community practice, knowledge, interest, and resource needs regarding at-risk drivers.

Project Activities
To prepare for development of the assessment tool used in the project, the researchers reviewed the literature for studies in the U.S. and abroad conducted among medical professionals and providers of services to older adults. They also set up a technical advisory group and conducted in-depth interviews with several professionals who serve the older adult community. Based on findings from these activities, the researchers developed an assessment tool and a sampling plan. Invitations to participate in the Web-based survey were sent to a wide range of practitioners, including physicians, social workers, senior center workers, and law enforcement among others in all 67 Florida counties. Over 1,300 surveys were completed. Survey results were analyzed in total and by many subgroups, including county, FDOT district, respondent title/category, urban/rural counties, age, and gender. The survey asked questions about awareness, understanding, knowledge, and use of solutions and tools that are available to address driving when working with older adults. Practitioners were also asked what tools they would like to have to address the safe driving issues of aging drivers.

Project Benefits
The assessment results provide a snapshot of current practice in Florida of how professionals from health care and older adult service organizations interact with older Floridians on driving issues. Project results will be used by SMFLC to guide development and/or dissemination of educational and outreach materials which support the recognition and reporting of at-risk drivers. Results will allow SMFLC to continue to work towards their goal of reducing crash rates for aging road users by improving their safety, access, and mobility.

Download Full Report (pdf):
fdot-full-report

Download Report Summary (pdf):
fdot-summary

For more information, please see dot.state.fl.us/research-center, or visit www.FLsams.org

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How to understand and communicate with different generations http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/news/how-to-understand-and-communicate-with-different-generations/ Mon, 29 Jun 2015 13:00:58 +0000 http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/?p=999 How to understand and communicate with different generations

understanding-generationsWhile many organizations target a particular demographic or psychographic audience for their products and services, some cast a wide net that reaches both targeted and mass markets. Think of healthcare, financial services, and nonprofits, to name just a few.

For the first time in history, our country is blessed to have six living generations that not only have unique needs and desires, but also varied ways of communicating. The generations most frequently identified through popular media, and the birth years frequently associated with them, are:

  • Greatest/Depression/GI (1901-1926)
  • Silent (1927-1945)
  • Baby Boomers (1946-1964)
  • X or Latchkey Kids (1965-1980)
  • Y or Millennials (1981-2000)
  • Z or Boomlets (2001+)

Organizations are paying attention as to how to successfully create work environments where diverse generations function well and produce, while the upcoming 2016 election is already starting to generate buzz about the generational differences/needs and how that will impact the outcome.

It is also important to understand how to get information from the different generations so you can best position and market your brand, products, and services.

Getting information and conducting research among the bookend generations – those who are among the oldest (Greatest) and youngest (Z/Boomlets) – can often involve surrogates, such as caregivers for the oldest and parents for the youngest.

The four middle generations, spanning over six decades, literally and figuratively, can and do speak a different language. If you want to acquire information from them, one size does not fit all and different strategies are required.

Silent Generation

The Silent generation consists of predominantly retirees who are on both Medicare and Social Security and are among the last generation to enjoy having access to a pension. Many are somewhat more financially comfortable than younger generations because they have saved money, are cautious and disciplined, often times based upon their upbringing and decades of hard work – many times at the same company! Many are also hell bent on insuring that they leave an inheritance to their children. Our work has found that if you want to reach them, they tend to actively use traditional media such as newspapers, TV, radio, and print marketing. While many are active users of the Internet and access Facebook, when we need to do quantitative research among them, the best option is via a landline call. This method works well once we can get beyond their cautiousness of knowing the interview really is research as opposed to a scam or sales pitch. When options call for qualitative, such as focus groups, they love participating in in-person groups in the afternoon following a light lunch.

Baby Boomers

The so-called pig in the python generation, with about 77 million, is still going strong, although likely a bit slower since they are now all eligible for AARP membership, even though many will not admit it. The generation that said “you can’t trust anyone over 30,” now ranges in age between 52 and 69 with the Woodstock, rock and roll and yuppie parts of their past replaced with a “sandwich generation” that is mostly still working and often providing both financial and emotional support to their children and elderly parents. Unlike many of the silent generation, our research has found that many in this cohort are struggling to save for a retirement that used to seem like light years away, but is now at their doorstep. The younger part of this generation also does not yet have access to safety nets called Social Security and Medicare. This generation appears to pay attention to traditional media like TV and cable, but also rely on the Internet as a source of information for many aspects of their life. They are also inclined to embrace Facebook as a way of communicating and sharing information, as well as LinkedIn. When we are doing quantitative research among this group, we find a combination of landline interviews supplemented by opt in web-based panels works best. Focus groups work well for this segment, held in the evening after their work day is over.

Generation X/Latchkey Kids

This is the first generation to be the prodigy of older Baby Boomers and have been frequently referred to as “Latchkey Kids.” This generation was the first to be strongly introduced to the computer as an educational and informational tool. Unlike the Silent Generation who stayed with one company for most of their career, this generation is motivated to explore what will best contribute to their future and are open to changing jobs and careers. Many in this generation are in the midst of working full-time, while also attempting to balance the needs of their children. As a group, they do not read a traditional newspaper and get most of their news and information online through the Internet and various social media sources. Our research has also found out that word of mouth is very important to this group. This generation is somewhat resistant to participating in research since they do not have the time and they can be cynical or suspicious of organizations interested in collecting data. To reach this generation for quantitative projects, various methods must be employed, with landline being one of the least effective methods. Rather, this audience can be better accessed through cell phone only households, web-based surveys, and mobile surveys via smartphone. For qualitative research, this generation can be best accessed using web-based focus groups since they can easily and effectively communicate their thoughts and needs electronically.

Generation Y/ Millennials

This generation has never known a time without computers and, perhaps due to their strong digital capabilities, new terms have been coined that reflect the changes that have occurred. One such example is Nomophobia or no-mobile-phone-phobia which is anxiety if a person cannot be connected 24/7 to their smartphone. This is not to say that only Generation Y/Millennials are affected, but they certainly are a target for this so-called disease coined by a U.K. researcher in 2010. This generation is helping to recreate how we work in this country with the old 9-5 routine not fitting well with their aspirations and lifestyle needs. They get their information from social media and the Internet, which also appear to be main venues for socializing with their peers and friends. This generation, which currently estimated to exceed the number of existing Baby Boomers, has grown up feeling they are special. This is insight SRA has gained from extensive research among potential and existing employers who are attempting to hire them. This is a very mobile generation that is difficult to connect with using any traditional research sources. They have short attention spans and are multi-taskers. To conduct quantitative research among this generation, one of the best methods is to conduct surveys that have been optimized for use on a smartphone. These surveys need to be short, very focused, visually appealing, and entertaining. To interact qualitatively with them, one method is to engage them where they are which means the venue is on their terms.

Closing

Bearing in mind that it has been frequently published that the first person to live to be 150 has already been born, those of us engaged in conducting research are constantly becoming more innovative in our approach to interacting with audiences. Hang on for an exciting future adventure.

SRA Research Group is a solution-based consultancy with the vision for our clients based upon the fundamentals we continue to deliver – Strategy, Results and Achievement – since our founding 30 years ago. Our firm provides exemplary research services and support to organizations geared toward understanding and measuring how to best keep their customers and clients satisfied. We are a trusted partner that helps frame issues, develop solutions, and refine opportunities.

Contact SRA at (561) 744-5662

Visit our website at www.sra-researchgroup.com

Follow us on Twitter @SRAResearchGp

Follow us on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/company/sra-research-group

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Ten tips on doing successful focus groups http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/news/ten-tips-on-doing-successful-focus-groups/ Mon, 01 Jun 2015 17:20:49 +0000 http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/?p=983 Ten tips on doing successful focus groups

Having done focus groups professionally for three decades, SRA Research Group has learned and embraced several processes that help result in successful outcomes.

#1  First, when you get that call from a client saying “we need to do focus groups,” insist on conducting a discovery session outlining the goals the client must achieve. You may find out that they want to obtain statistical data on a new product or service which is best suited for quantitative research.

#2  Once you have the goals and find that focus groups are the best methodology, work with the client to determine the best type of respondents to include in the project. Caution – do not make recruiting specs akin to looking for a needle in a hay stack, like finding only pregnant women who will give birth to a girl with blue eyes.

#3  Align yourself with solid recruiting partners who can commit to filling the groups with respondents you need within the required time period. This also means that a solid and respected recruiter will guarantee that you do have eight out of ten respondents attend and will replace respondents who may cancel the day before.

#4  Negotiate, up front, what the recruiter will charge you for respondents who do not show up. Stipulate what you feel is fair for you, the recruiter,  and your client.

#5  If your client decides they want to moderate the focus groups or help with other aspects of focus groups, caution them on the need to be 100% impartial and know this is not likely to happen. Personally evaluate if you want to take on the project. SRA Research Group does not take on qualitative projects where we are not able to also moderate the groups.

#6  Prior to starting the project, hold a discovery session with the client to discuss all goals that must be achieved. This will act as a confirmation that the project, as you have outlined it, it 100% in sync with client needs and objectives. Neither you nor your client wants to experience any surprises. As the next step, design a detailed discussion guide based on what you have learned in the discovery session to be used in the focus groups.

#7  Work out all logistics with clients prior to the groups, such as not wearing logoed items if the groups were recruited blind (sponsor of the research is not to be identified), obtaining a full list of clients to attend so the focus group facility can direct them to the right room, selecting client refreshments, video/audio recording needed, etc.

#8  Have recruiters provide full profiles of respondents well before the groups so you can check to make sure they are properly recruited and also share the profiles with the client.

#9  Set processes with clients before the groups as to when and how to receive additional questions – very best option is to take additional client questions at the conclusion of the groups as opposed to interruptions during the groups and assign one client in the “backroom” who will be the person responsible for accumulating and providing additional questions to ask.

#10  Have a blast doing the groups! They are a wonderful way to gain insights and reasons regarding consumer behavior and attitude.

For more tips, contact SRA Research Group at 561-744-5662

Visit our website www.sra-researchgroup.com

SRA Research Group is a solution-based consultancy with the vision for our clients based upon the fundamentals we continue to deliver – Strategy, Results and Achievement – since our founding 30 years ago. Our firm provides exemplary research services and support to organizations geared toward understanding and measuring how to best keep their customers and clients satisfied. We are a trusted partner that helps frame issues, develop solutions, and refine opportunities.

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Health care – What do consumers think of your brand? http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/news/health-care-what-do-consumers-think-of-your-brand/ Mon, 25 May 2015 14:27:53 +0000 http://www.sra-researchgroup.com/?p=980 What do consumers think of your brand?

For many years, SRA Research Group has worked with various types of health care organizations such as home health, hospital networks, rehab centers, and physician practices across the country to help these organizations measure awareness and image of their brands. While knowing if people are familiar with your name is important, it is critical to understand what customers and prospects think about your organization, especially in this time of increased competition and expanding service areas.

Awareness is only the first step in the process.

The old adage they have to know you to use you is still true. However, in today’s highly competitive market, knowing your name is only the first step. Consumers have so many choices when it comes to health care that it is critical to ensure your brand, along with your relevant products and services, is on their radar. In addition, you need to understand if your brand has a positive reputation in the community and that old baggage isn’t keeping consumers away from your doors.

Consumers have many resources at their fingertips to help them gauge the performance and capabilities of health care organizations they may consider selecting. This means it is critically important to make sure every customer has a positive experience and receives excellent service since they are more likely than ever to influence friends and family.

There is a need to recognize and embrace change and continuously strive to improve.

It is simply good business to continually strive to give every customer and visitor you encounter an excellent experience. This can start by training every employee and staff member to simply acknowledge customers, consumers, caregivers, and visitors using your services. While this may seem obvious, you’d be surprised how a little human contact improves perceptions and customer satisfaction. What is most important is having ongoing efforts to improve in all areas of performance and service.

A positive experience starts at the top.

Consumers are increasingly sophisticated when it comes to understanding the dynamics of good service. In our research across a wide variety of industries, we have found that consumers believe top management sets the tone for service in an organization. In addition, consumers know that happy employees provide much better customer service. Communication is the key. It’s important that management engages with and listens to staff so everyone is striving to provide the best possible experience.

Finally, the only way to really know if your organization is making continuous improvements in customer service is to measure it. We have found that syndicated services don’t really tell the whole story in terms of customer satisfaction. In fact, we recommend hybrid research, including customized quantitative surveys among your customers, patients, and prospects, supported by qualitative research among similar audiences. This allows you to evaluate your competitive position in order to really understand your performance. It also provides marketing and senior management with a clear picture of how the organization is viewed and what areas need work to make the organization more competitive.

About SRA Research Group

SRA Research Group is a solution-based consultancy with the vision for our clients based on the fundamentals we continue to deliver – Strategy, Results and Achievement – since our founding 30. Our firm provides research services and support to help health care organizations understand their awareness, brand image and competitive position. We are a trusted partner that helps frame issues, develop solutions, and refine opportunities.

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