Phil Hearn: Blogger, Writer & Founder of MRDC Software Ltd.

4 steps to an easy CATI installation with QPSMR

Ease of use, functionality and cost are probably the three main drivers for purchasing any software. In my view, most CATI (Computer Assisted Telephone Interviewing) software packages fail on at least one of these criteria – some are expensive, some lack functionality or not even genuine CATI survey software systems and some are simply overpriced. QPSMR CATI has addressed all these issues, so let’s look in a bit more depth about how you could use QPSMR CATI.

CATI software needs to be easy in every way

When it comes to CATI software, ease of implementation is just as important as ease of use. In addition to this, project management should also be easy such that problems are easy to understand and solve. So, let’s walk through the four steps you need to go through and compare those steps to other products in this field.

Step 1: Server and software installation

a. Software

When you buy QPSMR CATI, you get two software programs. The main QPSMR CATI Administrator licence, which allows your staff to develop questionnaires and manage projects, and TELIN, which your interviewers use to conduct interviews with respondents. There is no limit to the number of users that can manage questionnaires and surveys. Installation is easy – we provide a free guide if you are not familiar with installing software. The QPSMR CATI Administrator licence is installed on your server whereas the TELIN software can be installed on the server or locally on each interviewer’s machine.

b. Server

To function fully, QPSMR CATI needs a server – this can be a server in your office, a remote server or a Cloud server. The good news with QPSMR CATI is that its unique design means that you need less power than other ‘hungry’ CATI systems. The reason for this is that an interviewer only connects to the server at the start and end of an interview. In other words, there is very low traffic across your server. This is important and can be a hidden and expensive cost with many systems. Almost

all other systems, are relaying back and forth to the server as each question is presented during an interview – and, there is nothing worse than a delay during an interview. This will not happen with QPSMR CATI.

Step 2: Learning how to set up a questionnaire

Whatever CATI software you use you will, of course, need to learn how to set up the questionnaires that you intend to deploy. Many CATI systems use complex scripting languages to develop the questionnaires. Personally, I find this a dangerous route to go unless you have a very high volume of surveys and a team of people who are skilled in script

ing the surveys. QPSMR is entirely GUI (graphical user interface) driven with easy to follow menus. That’s not to say that there may be several features that you will need to learn, but most things are intuitive or easy to remember once learnt.


To facilitate your use of QPSMR CATI, there are series of videos which help you to prepare your questionnaires. These cover three areas:

  • An overview for orientation
  • Tutorials to help you get started and learn all the basics you need
  • About 30 videos to cover topics that you may need to cover

Since we introduced these videos in early 2018, we have found that customers have reported far easier onboarding – and making things easy is our primary goal.

Step 3: Managing surveys

Preparing a questionnaire using all the features you need is a key part of the process, but managing a survey is equally important. I believe that it is important to make tasks such as deploying surveys, managing the sample, handling and monitoring quotas and managing interviewers as easy as possible. Again, QPSMR CATI does this through a GUI interface that is easy to follow. We supply an easy to edit template that will cover all the tools you need to control your survey – from initial greetings, managing quotas, timing sections of the questionnaire, managing call backs and all the other facilities needed by a professional CATI operation. All these tools are easy to understand and do not require programmers.

Videos and induction

Again, there is a series of videos that will explain how to use these features and, once again, clients find that once they have followed the procedures once or twice, there is little more to learn

. There are training materials for interviewers so that they can becom

e productive quickly. Every new user gets free access to these videos as well as some free online training and a Q&A session.

Step 4: Obtaining management reports

Some CATI systems have good reporting systems that allow you to monitor productivity, project p

rogress etc. However, they can be fixed reports that do not give you the information you need to run your business efficiently. As QPSMR CATI includes a full reporting system, it is easy to produce any reports you need – you can customise them to show exactly what data you need. The data can even be used to automate figures and charts for management reports. And, if you want to export the data to Excel or Google Sheets, for example, so that you can produce your own reports, this is easy to do at the press of a button or two.

Let’s not forget cost

Of course, I’ve not mentioned cost too much in this article. Y

ou will find QPSMR CATI’s cost competitive for several rea

sons – some obvious, some less obvious:

  • The licence fees are competitively priced
  • You get free data collection software for paper surveys
  • Your licence includes a fully-featured tabulation system
  • You get free secondary analysis tools which clients or research executives can use
  • You get about 50 videos to help with getting started and specific topics
  • You get free online help with any initial problems or grey areas
  • You get prompt software support
  • You get discounts on other MRDC products

Do you need any more reasons?

I think QPSMR CATI is a compelling package for companies wishing to conduct CATI surveys. You can start small and grow as your CATI business grows. The software is compatible with most other market research software so that you can provide your clients with data in the form they need.

If you want to find out more, please contact our Sales Executive at

More to explore

What is the best software to use for CATI?

As more and more market research surveys are conducted online, older technologies tend to stand still. Why? Because the software companies are racing to be leaders in the next big thing. This can leave a void meaning that older technologies don’t develop as much as they could. MRDC has sought to stay at the front for old technologies as well as new technologies.

Best software for CATI - QPSMR
What types of software are used for CATI surveys?

The CATI (or Computer Assisted Telephone Interviewing) market has clearly shrunk in recent years with the advent of cheaper and faster online surveys. Telephone surveys of the past are often now conducted online. There are few new products in the CATI software market, but the way CATI is being used is changing.

Best CATI softwareTelephone number security with CATI software using QPSMR

Security and data privacy continue to grow in importance. New laws in the EU under GDPR are designed to make care of personal data increasingly important to companies. Whilst there is an established and obvious need for data security with online surveys, there has arguably been less rigour with CATI surveys.