Why CATI remains the superior way to collect data

Why CATI remains the superior way to collect data

What is CATI?

Computer Assisted Telephone Interviewing or CATI is a survey administered by an interviewer over the telephone. The interviewer has the questionnaire on their computer where they can input the responses which can be analysed later.


Advantages of CATI

CATI has many advantages as a data collection method, compared to F2F or online methods.

  • It is cost-effective: Compared to F2F research, CATI surveys are much more cost-effective as interviewers don’t have to travel to reach respondents.
  • High response rates: It is not always possible to meet respondents F2F however in today’s day and age almost everyone in Australia owns a telephone either mobile or landline which they can be reached on to complete a survey.
  • Reaching a wider demographic: Whilst technology continues to advance not every demographic is keeping up. Whilst a large percentage of people do have access to a computer and internet, not all have the access or skill level to complete a survey via email or online.
  • Collecting Qualitative feedback: CATI is also a useful method to use when you require qualitative feedback from your respondents. Interviewers have the ability to have a conversation with respondents and capture and understand their feedback accurately.


Disadvantages of CATI

Of course, there are disadvantages that come with CATI. But TKW Research and our expert CATI team have done their best to overcome any drawbacks that would usually exist within CATI research.

  • Interviewer training: Outsourcing research for your business to a third party means that the people conducting the surveys aren’t as knowledgeable about your business as your own staff would be.


Making CATI cost-effective

TKW has developed a leading standard of interviewer training. Not only do we have a team of experienced interviewers that are trained to get the right answers to the questions you want asked but we also have specialist teams of interviewers suited for different types of projects whether that be B2B, B2C or recruitment.

  • Taking too much of a respondent’s time: Not many people like to spend 15+ minutes on the phone answering questions.

Again, this is where our interviewer training plays a huge role in engaging the interest of respondents and keeping them interested in order to complete a survey. Offering respondents the ability to start a survey and calling them back at an appointed time that is convenient to finish the survey or simply being pleasant and professional to speak with which keeps respondents engaged throughout a lengthy interview.

  • Cost compared to online surveys: Collecting responses from your audience online is a cheaper option than CATI.

Whilst there is no way to overcome the cost difference between CATI and online surveys the question businesses need to ask is ‘What are we paying for?’ The data collected especially in open end questions via CATI is invaluable feedback, whilst a respondent might open up to an interviewer on those questions and interviewers are able to capture all of this, when typing a response themselves online they are more likely to keep it brief in order to get through the survey quickly.


There are far more advantages to CATI research than disadvantages, when choosing a company to conduct your CATI research knowing that they train interviewers effectively and can effectively engage your respondents is key to the success of your next project.

Contact us to discuss your research objectives.