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Face to Face Interviews

Our researchers are experienced in one to one interviewing and have a friendly, non-biased approach. Mackman researchers use face-to-face interview techniques for social research, market research and business to business customer satisfaction surveys.

Our research team strictly adhere to the MRS (Market Research Society) code of conduct for face to face interviewing. Face to face interviewing has significant advantages for qualitative research.

Advantages of face-to-face interviews

  • With face-to-face interviews you can be certain who has completed the questionnaire unlike postal or online methodologies.
  • Face-to-face interviews allow the inclusion of respondent groups that might otherwise be excluded (hard to reach groups) for instance the illiterate, blind, bedridden, or very old.
  • Face-to-face interviewers are able to probe for more information in the event that they sense that the respondent has more information, allowing for even more detailed data to be gathered.
  • Face-to-face interviews promote the use of different data collection techniques. For instance open ended questions and visual aids such as cue cards or visual aids. A self-administered questionnaire may be used for part of the interview (particularly useful for asking really sensitive questions in a face-to-face interview).
  • Face-to-face interviews can be much longer that telephone interviews, online or postal questionnaires. An hour long personal interview is not uncommon. A telephone interview in excess of 20 minutes requires exceptional skill and a postal questionnaire will require an appropriate incentive if it is of excessive length. It should be noted however that street face-to-face interviews need to be kept short.
  • Face-to-face respondents are lead through a questionnaire one question at a time and cannot flick ahead or answer out of order, which can in turn alter findings.

Disadvantages of face-to-face interviews

  • Face-to-face interviews can be intrusive, reactive and take great skill to administer without introducing bias. Reactivity becomes more of a problem when more than one interviewer is involved as delivering consistent reactions can be difficult to manage.
  • Face-to-face interviews are costly in both time and money.
  • Face-to-face interviews by their nature need to be administered to lower numbers than is possible with other techniques.
  • Face-to-face interviews can run the risk of going out of date due to the prolonged time periods that can be involved.

In the event that you are considering face-to-face research then please do not hesitate to call us to discuss your needs or to request a quotation.