Survey Specialist Intermediate

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A cover letter is required for consideration for this position.  The cover letter should specifically address why you are interested in this position, describe specific skills and experiences in your history, and directly relate them to the responsibilities of, and qualification for this position.  In order for the Career Portal system to accept your cover letter, include it as the first page of your resume document.


We are looking for a Survey Specialist Intermediate to join the Data Collection Operations Survey Services Lab (SSL) at the Institute for Social Research (ISR), Survey Research Center (SRC), Survey Research Operations (SRO). The SSL is located on the Ann Arbor campus of the University of Michigan. The SSL collects and processes high quality social science survey data.

Survey Specialists in the SSL support data collection staff responsible for meeting project production and cost goals on complex surveys, requiring use of computer-assisted data collection technologies by telephone. In addition, the SSL implements mail survey operations, coding, and quality control functions for survey projects. There are between 60 and 130 active telephone interviewers (temporary employees) depending on workload, and approximately 15 regular staff members. The SSL is open seven days a week, until midnight most nights. This position may be required to assist with covering evening and weekend shifts.

This position is Ann Arbor based.

More information about our organization can be found here:


Provide functional supervision to contingent staff members completing surveys and other instruments, including evening and weekends.  Ensure protocols are being consistently followed by staff through review and monitoring of work products; implement quality control procedures; participate in problem identification and resolution during data collection and processing period.

Interpret implementation specifications as clients develop survey research project designs; lead the project team on well-established projects to meet deliverables on time and on budget; lead tasks on larger projects; manage project/task scope and maintain a clearly defined scope statement; prepare project work plans and schedules in consultation with study staffs and other members of the project team.

Manage project operations.  Compose, manage, and update the project work plan, including: project goals, objectives and scope, budget, assumptions, constraints, roles and responsibilities, risks, change management approach, project deliverables, and milestones.  Meet data collection and processing requirements according to schedule and budget; use statistical process control techniques to monitor all aspects of production; track and report project status to senior management.

Participate in questionnaire and other instrument development and specification and development of technical systems.

Document all phases of the data collection process; assist in preparation of basic analyses of data; forecast project expenses.

Develop and implement contingent staff recruitment strategies; recruit, screen, hire, and train data collection staff; develop training plans and materials; implement general and study-specific training programs.

Required Qualifications*

  • Bachelor’s degree in social sciences with three or more years of progressive levels of responsibility in survey research or related field, including two or more aspects of survey research (sampling, data collection, coding, data processing, application programming, analysis, methodology) or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Experience managing survey projects and/or operations in multiple modes of data collection with budgets totaling $100,000-$1,000,000 across the year or lower budgets with more complexity.
  • Experience with computer assisted interviewing (CAI) software and experience using and developing technical systems designed to collect and organize data.
  • Demonstrated leadership and supervisory experience with individuals from diverse cultures.
  • Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively with staff at all levels and under tight deadlines.
  • Demonstrated ability to use critical thinking skills in problem solving.
  • Demonstrated ability to compose instructions, memorandum and other technical writing.
  • Excellent communication and organizational skills and demonstrated competence in MS Office software.

Desired Qualifications*

  • Master’s degree in related field.
  • Experience using statistical techniques and/or software (e.g. STATA, SAS, SPSS, R, Excel, etc.) for problem solving and forecasting. 
  • Experience training, evaluating, and providing coaching/feedback to employees. 
  • Experience in manipulation of data sets for simple file creation and presentation in tables.

Work Schedule

Schedule must support management needs of a seven-day-per-week operations environment.  Evening and weekend shifts are required.

Additional Information

The Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan seeks to recruit and retain a diverse workforce as a reflection of our commitment to serve the diverse people of Michigan, to maintain the excellence of the university, and to ground our research in varied disciplines, perspectives, and ways of knowing and learning.

Why Work at Michigan?

In addition to a career filled with purpose and opportunity, the University of Michigan offers a comprehensive benefits package to help you stay well, protect yourself and any eligible family members, and to plan for a secure future.  Benefits include:

  • Generous time off
  • A retirement plan that provides two-for-one matching contributions with immediate vesting upon meeting eligibility requirements
  • Many choices for comprehensive health insurance
  • Life insurance
  • Long-term disability coverage
  • Flexible spending accounts for healthcare and dependent care expenses.

Application Deadline

Job openings are posted for a minimum of fourteen calendar days. This job may be removed from posting boards and filled any time after the minimum posting period has ended.

U-M EEO/AA Statement

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.

U-M COVID-19 Vaccination Policy

COVID-19 vaccinations, including boosters when eligible, are required for all University of Michigan students, faculty and staff across all campuses, including Michigan Medicine.  This includes those working remotely.   More information on this new policy is available on the Campus Blueprint website or the UM-Dearborn and UM-Flint websites.