WHAT IS A DATA COLLECTION?
Data collection is a process in which data is accumulated and predictions are made. Why do we need data collection? All modern techniques are working to find solutions to real-world problems with the help of the data. To accomplish this, the data needs to be understood by the data analyst. To understand the data properly, it is important to collect that data in an organized way. That’s why the data collection method is used.
When a data analyst collects data, he must know which type of data he is collecting. Data is classified into three types, based their structure. These three types are as follows
• Structured Data – Structured data is that data which is stored or arranged in a proper format like spreadsheets,
• Unstructured Data – Unstructured data is that data which is not stored or arranged in a proper format. For example,
any text, sound, video, etc.
• Semi-Structured Data – Semi-Structured data is the combination of both, structured as well as unstructured.
The type of data is decided by the data itself. The method for collecting data and the operations to be
performed on the data is selected.
DATA COLLECTION METHODS
Data collection methods are decided based on which data is collected and what problem is to be solved. There are two types of data collection methods and these are listed below
• Primary Data Collection
• Secondary Data Collection
WHAT ARE PRIMARY DATA COLLECTION METHODS?
The primary data collection methods are used for collecting primary data. Primary data is that data which is being collected for the first time. Primary data is collected for new and unique problems. No research is performed prior to this data collection. That’s why new and fresh data is collected for it. The results we get from primary data collection methods are accurate as well as less time-consuming. Here, the data is gathered by the analyst itself.
WHAT ARE SECONDARY DATA COLLECTION METHODS?
The secondary collection methods are used for collecting secondary data. Secondary data is that data which is not gathered by the analyst itself. Someone else gathers this data for the data analyst. The data which is gathered here is not new. It has already been gathered and researched. Secondary data is also known as second-hand data because this type of data is already available. It has been said that secondary data is more cost-effective since this data is already available.
The sources from which we get the secondary data are as follows
• Sales reports
• Customer details
• Feedback from customers or others
• Financial statements
• Company information
• Management information system
These all are internal sources. External sources are as follows
• Government census
• Business journals
• Business magazines
• Information from other government departments
• Social books
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