Welcome to the Frequently Asked Questions page. If you have a question we haven’t answered here, please contact us. We will reply to your question as quickly as possible, and we’ll probably add it to this list for other people’s benefit!

Privacy and Ethics

Q) I’m worried about the US Patriot Act. Is your data collected and stored in Canada?

Absolutely! Collegiate Digital Resources (CDR) is 100% Canadian owned and operated. We are physically located in British Columbia, with our main server in Vancouver, and our back-up server in Toronto. The data we collect never leaves Canada.

Q) I’m not in Canada. Can you run a survey for me, or do you just take Canadian clients?

We take clients from all over the world, so don’t worry if you aren’t in Canada. Many of our clients are concerned about the provisions of the US Patriot Act and similar legislation, even clients located in the US itself, and want data collected and stored outside the Patriot Act’s jurisdiction. While we are obviously concerned with meeting Canadian privacy, data collection and disclosure laws, our legislative provisions are comparable to other Commonwealth and European jurisdictions.

Q) What personal privacy, data collection and disclosure laws apply to CDR? 

Privacy laws in Canada work at two levels, federal and provincial, and adherence to both is mandatory for all businesses. Federal legislation applies to all Canadian businesses wherever they are located, and provincial legislation applies to all businesses operating in that specific province or territory. Since CDR is located in British Columbia, we are governed by both the Canadian and British Columbian privacy laws.

Federal legislation: Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act – PIPEDA is the federal privacy law for private-sector organizations. It sets out the ground rules for how businesses collect, use and disclose personal information in the course of commercial activity.

Provincial legislation: Personal Information Protection Act – PIPA describes how all private sector organizations in British Columbia must handle the personal information of their employees and the public and sets rules about collecting, using and disclosing that personal information.

All of CDR’s data collection, handling and storage practices are fully compliant with both PIPEDA and PIPA. We also follow recommendations made by both the Privacy Commissioner of Canada and the Information and Privacy Commissioner for British Columbia.


Data Security

Q) How secure is my data?

Exceptionally secure! We have our own dedicated servers located in downtown Vancouver in what we refer to as ‘the bunker’. This facility is located in a flood-proof, earthquake-proof secure location with back-up generators and 24\7 monitoring. Dedicated servers have many benefits. We have 100%control over our server which allows us to always have the latest security patches, the most recent anti-spam definitions and 24-hour access should a web site require attention. Back-up’s of all data are done every 24 hours, with all back-up data migrated to our secondary location in Toronto.

Q) Who has access to my data?

Other than you, only three people. CDR’s Director of Research, the Researcher helping you on your project and the site’s Systems Administrator. All access to the site and the servers are password protected and all access is fully logged and tracked.

Q) What happens to my data once I complete my project?

Once you receive your data and have decrypted the file successfully, you send us an email letting us know. Once we receive that email, we erase all project related data using DoD 5220.22-M seven pass sanitation methods. Data will be completely unrecoverable at that point. We do not archive client research data.


Organization Diagnostic Instrument Report

Q) What does an ODI Report contain?

Each Organization Diagnostic Instrument Report is a complete diagnostic of your organization. We assess organizational health on 20 separate dimensions, all of which are compared to key outcome measures to create the most complete product of its kind currently available. Each ODI Report includes the following:

Overall Health Assessment: The ODI output is initially summarized in a single score, much like a credit score, that enables business owners and managers to get an ‘at a glance’ assessment of their organization’s overall health. If the ODI is repeated at a later date, this score makes it easy to  compare any changes in that health level over time.

ODI Scan Results: The ODI Scan Results are the cornerstone of our diagnostic analysis. They are a simplified picture of the ODI results that enables business owners and managers to receive a rapid and easily understood assessment of core strengths and weaknesses occurring within their organization. ODI Scan Results are provided at three levels: the Component Level, the Dimensional Level and the Question Level. Think of these levels as the different resolutions available to an X-Ray or MRI machine at a hospital.

Component Level results are like a full body scan: they provide a quick and effective method for assessing the health of large systems, and provide broad contextual understanding.

Dimensional Level results act like a much higher resolution scan on a single area of the body, providing a greater detail of what is happening in that specific area.

Question Level results are similar to the super high resolution provided by very tightly focused X-Rays or MRI scans. They provide the highest level of detail to zero right in on specific issues.

One of the most powerful aspects of the ODI, is that we provide results at all three levels simultaneously! This allows us to see what is occurring in your organization with crystal clarity.

The Return on Investment Stack: The ROI Stack is one of the most valuable outcomes of the ODI for any business. The ROI Stack Score is the final output of the complex statistical modeling done as part of your ODI assessment. It measures the level of impact each Dimension is having on the two outcomes of Job Satisfaction and Organization Satisfaction.  The higher the RIO Impact Score, the greater the level of impact that Dimension is having on your business. This score will tell you what you need to fix first, what can wait for later and how to most quickly improve bottom line performance.

Qualitative Results Mapped by Dimension: The final question posed by the ODI is an open-ended question designed to encourage staff to provide a detailed assessment of what they would like to see changed in their organization. Each comment collected is read individually and a primary code is assigned to the central theme of the comment based on one of the ODI dimensions: salary, operational management, vision, human resource systems, etc. Once all the data is coded, all responses are presented by theme on the ODI Report. This is a very powerful tool, as it helps to paint a narrative picture of what the numerical scores mean.With both the numerical and the narrative results of the survey, you will be well equipped to develop evidence-based strategies and action plans to improve the weaker areas of your organization.

Q) What type of statistical analysis goes into an ODI Report?

A considerable amount of analysis and statistical modeling goes into each ODI. This includes, but is not limited to:

Definition of Sample Characteristics: Prior to beginning any analytical work, we define the critical sample frame needed for all subsequent analytical work. This includes the identification of the sample size, the sample completion rate and response rates and confidence intervals based on a standard 95% margin of error.

Basic Statistical Analysis: Our initial analysis begins with a ‘basic’ exploration of the data, primarily looking at central tendency, variance and data distribution. This is done on a question-by-question level, and looks at the mean, median, mode, standard deviation, standard error, skewness, and kurtosis levels. This fundamentally tests each question for accuracy, error, precision and bias.

Scale Condensation: After basic exploratory analysis is conducted on the data set, we condense all of the frequency data into a single score for each question. This creates the broader range of responses usually needed to make deeper statistical analysis more effective and comprehensible.

Correlations: Once we are sure that all of the standard statistical tests are within tolerances, we look at the level of correlation between all of the questions. This is done using standard Pearson Tests. This gives us a good understanding of how response patterns to different questions may be related and suggests which of the more advanced statistical techniques used later will be the most appropriate to use on your data set.

Multivariate Analysis: During this most advanced step of the process, we conduct a variety of multivariate analytical techniques in order to identify the level of predictive influence the questions and dimensions have on each other. These techniques most commonly include multiple regression analysis, factor analysis, and principle component analysis, but could include other forms of analysis depending on the data set’s size and cohesion. The exact techniques selected at this phase of analysis would be completely dependent on the size of the sample, since many common statistical techniques require a minimum sample size to produce reliable test output.

Q) How do I get my ODI Report?

Your Organization Diagnostic Instrument Report will be sent to you by email in PDF format. If you wish, we can send the ODI Report to you fully encrypted, with a decryption key sent separately.

Q) What software do you use to analyze the ODI data?

A) Once the data has been collected, we import results into SPSS for analysis. SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences) is one of the most advanced statistics packages available on the market, and is the core of all our data analysis activities. However, since very few of our clients have SPSS, we generally save data in one of the formats used by Microsoft Excel.

Q) How do you administer the Organization Diagnostic Instrument?

We email a link that you send to all employees in your organization, along with the password they will need to enter the survey site. The link will take each respondent to our secure online survey page.

Q) How long does the whole ODI process take?

There is no really solid answer to this. The whole process usually takes about 1 month to complete, from first contact to a finalized report.

Here is a rough outline of of a normal timeline.

When you contact us to start your ODI, we’ll work with you to finalize questions, add in any custom material you need to get the best results for your organization.  This normally takes a week or so, depending on the availability of your organization’s senior staff.

Once we have all your organization’s requirements, we’ll finish off any back end programming need to get the data you require. This normally takes a day or so, depending on the number and complexity of the modifications being made.

After the final format is complete, we will mail out the link to the site for distribution to respondents in the organization. Normally the site is active for between two and three weeks, depending on the season.  During peak vacation use periods, such as mid-summer and around Christmas, we usually advise leaving the site open for a full three weeks.

Once the site is closed and we have the needed data, things move very quickly.  Most of the statistical modeling goes very quickly in SPSS, with the real time being needed to format and categorize all the comments collected in the last question.  Depending on how many there are, we may need between two days and five days to map everything out.

Once the data is analysed and mapped, we port the results into the final report, and email you the PDF.


Other Frequently Asked Questions

Q) Do you do custom work, or just the Organization Diagnostic Instrument?

We can do other work as well.  Check out our Custom Survey page for more details. While the ODI is definitely  our ‘flag ship’ product, we have over 25 years experience conducting qualitative and qualitative research of all types in a variety of organizations and can probably meet any custom research needs you may have.

If you are a graduate student, a university professor, or anyone with a vested interest in collecting and keeping your data in Canada, you may also want to check out our sister site Academic Survey Canada, which focuses more on meeting general research needs rather than conducting internal business diagnostics for organizations.

Helping to Build Strong & Healthy Organizations Worldwide

Contact Us today to get your diagnostic started.