Revisiting the Value of Repeated Contacts on Survey Response Rates in Management Accounting Research

41 Pages Posted: 6 Aug 2005  

Jean-François Henri

Université Laval

Nicole Thibodeau

Willamette University - Atkinson Graduate School of Management

Date Written: October 2006

Abstract

This study examines the use and effect of repeated contacts on mail survey response rates in management accounting research. The use of repeated contacts such as prenotification or follow-up is one highly recommended means to increase response rates. However, there is very little theory behind this recommendation. Further, the empirical evidence is mixed. We start by documenting the use and effect of such techniques on response rates in extant management accounting research. Second, we conduct an experiment to examine the individual and combined influence of prenotification and follow-up on response rates. The analysis of the literature from 1985 to 2004 and our experimental evidence reveal that repeated contacts do not systematically increase response rates. Our analysis suggests that there is a need to better understand when, why, and how repeated contacts are expected to influence response rates, and in particular, their potential benefit to management accounting mail survey research.

Keywords: management accounting, mail survey, response rates, follow-up, prenotification

JEL Classification: M19, M41

Suggested Citation

Henri, Jean-François and Thibodeau, Nicole, Revisiting the Value of Repeated Contacts on Survey Response Rates in Management Accounting Research (October 2006). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=776669 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.776669

Jean-François Henri (Contact Author)

Université Laval ( email )

Pavillon Palasis-Prince
Quebec, Québec G1K 7P4
Canada

Nicole Thibodeau

Willamette University - Atkinson Graduate School of Management ( email )

900 State Street
307 Mudd Hall
Salem, OR 97301
United States

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