CATI and CAWI interviews are 2 quantitative survey methodologies allowing the collection of huge amounts of data over a limited period of time.
In CATIs, an operator contacts the respondent – according to previously agreed availability – and administers him a questionnaire. The operator uses software both for administering the questionnaire and for collecting the answers.
The sequence of questions is established in advance and may not be modified, so as to ensure uniformity and standardisation in the administration by the various operators.
The role of the operator is important as he guarantees the complete and correct filling out of the questionnaire, avoiding that some answers are omitted or the meaning of some question is not properly understood.
The software used when conducting the CATI interviews allows to keep constant track of the survey quotas and any geographical representativeness of the interviewed target group.
As this is a telephone interview, it is not possible to share audio-visual prompts with the respondent.
CATIs allow a high quality of the collected data, accuracy and precision, as well as a continuous monitoring of the interview progress.
In CAWIs, data collection takes place via the web. Through software, a link is sent to each respondent, who can fill out the questionnaire independently via PC, tablet or smartphone.
Since this is an online questionnaire, it is possible to include images or videos that the respondent can access by connecting to the link.
The predefined questionnaire is programmed on software that allows real-time data collection and quota tracking.
This methodology makes it possible to reach a large number of respondents in a very short time frame. People may fill out the questionnaire independently and may do so at a time of their choosing and take as much time as they need to respond.
Any limits are connected to the respondent’s failure to engage with the interviewer and exchange with the respondent and the risk of dropping out of the survey without having first completed the interview. Furthermore, even though there are no geographical target limits, those who are not familiar with computers and technology are excluded.