Several terms crop up so frequently here that readers deserve definitions of them as well as mention of alternative phrasings or synonyms that might appear.
- Survey. Whether online or in hard copy or by electronic voting or during an interview, any questionnaire that a law firm administers to collect information from participants. Sometimes it is referred to as a “poll” or a “straw vote.”
- Contact. Anyone who is invited to participate in a survey. We may sometimes refer to them as “invitees,” “clients” or “prospects.”
- Participant. Anyone who starts a survey. A participant who submits answers to a survey is a “respondent.”
- Respondent. A participant in a survey who submits the survey.
- Company. The organization of a person who takes a survey. Mostly a a company will be an incorporated entity, but the term also applies broadly to partnerships, not-for-profit organizations, governmental entities and any other entity.
- Report. The electronic file or hard copy publication that contains a survey’s findings and analysis. Most typically an electronic report is in PDF format. It could, however, be in a Word file, PowerPoint deck or other formats.
- Text. Whatever is written or listed in the survey’s report.
- Graphic. A plot or table that displays data. We also refer to them as “graphs.” If a an element of a report does not convey data, then it would be text or a “design element.”
- Design element. Anything in a report that is neither text nor a graphic, such as borders, images, pictures, lines, shapes, glyphs, or other elements.