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Survey InterviewerAlternative titles

Kaiuiui Rangahautanga

This job is sometimes referred to as:

Market Research Interviewer
Poll Interviewer

Survey interviewers collect facts and opinions by interviewing people. They conduct interviews for market research companies and other organisations.

Contact us

Call us on 0800 222 733


Survey interviewers usually earn between $14 and $19 an hour. Some companies offer performance incentives and long-service incentives.

Some experienced survey interviewers are self-employed. They contract their services to market research companies for an hourly rate, which is usually between $20 and $40.

What you will do

Survey interviewers may do some or all of the following:

  • phone people to make appointments for interviews
  • interview people in person or by telephone at their home or business
  • approach and interview people in the street, or other public places such as railway stations or shopping centres
  • ask set questions on the survey questionnaire
  • write down the answers on a survey form or computer
  • keep a record of the interview to hand to the survey supervisor.

Skills and knowledge

Survey interviewers need to have:

  • knowledge of their interview topic and different interview methods
  • good communication and people skills for dealing with a wide variety of people
  • good listening skills for accurately recording information
  • research and writing skills, including the ability to spell correctly
  • good keyboard and computer skills.

Working conditions

Survey interviewers:

  • may work full or part time
  • work in many different locations including market research company offices and call centres. They may also conduct surveys in people's homes or on the street
  • sometimes travel locally or nationally to conduct surveys 
  • may be required to complete a set number of interviews within a certain time frame, which can make the work pressured.

What's the job really like?

Rochelle Tapuai - Survey Interviewer

Rochelle Tapuai
A job that's great for building people skills

Rochelle Tapuai works as a survey interviewer for a large market research company. "My job is to ring up a random selection of people and interview them about their opinions on current issues in New Zealand or a company’s products or services. Our clients then use that information to better their customer services or improve their business.

"Being able to talk to different respondents and hearing so many different points of view helps you deal with people and understand the different ways people think."

Remaining polite in difficult circumstances can be challenging

"You need to have patience and be persistent with your respondents. Sometimes when they refuse to talk to you or are quite rude you can take it personally. But you have to remember that you’re representing your company and your client, so it’s important to make sure you’re always polite."

Efficient multitasking is key

"We also have to take down everything our respondents say verbatim. So fast typing skills and an eye for detail are important to ensure you take down their answers accurately. But I get given a lot of training and support so I feel confident in what I’m doing."


Survey interviewers employed by companies usually earn
per hour
Survey interviewers who are self-employed usually earn
per hour
Rochelle Tapuai sitting in front of a computer

Survey interviewers need good listening skills for recording information accurately

Updated 20 Jun 2013