Tips for a successful application

Tips for a successful application

For a quick overview please see the Creating a strong application infographic.


1. Invest time upfront and consult

Research the application process before you start. See single jurisdictional and cross jurisdictional application process.

Review the PHRN website/s of the data linkage unit/s from which you are requesting data for:

  • Information about the data collections available
  • Any mandatory or optional training
  • Details of the application process, see blank application form here

Engage with the PHRN and relevant data linkage unit/s, Client Services Team/s. The PHRN and Client Services Team/s can assist with:

  • Pre-submission review
  • Answering your questions and concerns
  • Providing guidance and advice on how to improve the application


2.Use plain language

Use plain and simple language to accurately communicate your study goals, design, and management plans. Those reviewing your application might not be experts in your field.


3. Be as specific as possible

When requesting data, be specific and only request the data you need, to answer your research questions.

Make sure that the available data is capable of answering your research question and you are familiar with the data collections and any limitations. To do this:

  • Check the Metadata Platform
  • Speak to Client Services Team/s
  • In some cases Client Services may direct you to speak directly with data custodians

Make sure that the study population definition answers your research question.


4. Ensure consistency

You’ll need to submit numerous documents as part of your application, so make sure they’re all consistent and up to date.

  • Make sure that the information in your application form is identical to the information you provide in other documents, for example ethics application/s
  • Remove duplication and simplify by cross-referencing within the application form
  • Ensure you maintain good version control across the application process


5. Data security is important

You’ll need to have secure data storage arrangements and document these details in your application.


6. Maintain contact with the PHRN and the DLU/s

Engage early and often. The PHRN and data linkage unit/s are there to help. They can guide you through the application and data linkage process, but they’ll also have questions of their own, so it’s important to maintain regular contact.

Carefully review, record and respond promptly to letters/emails/phone calls from the data custodian(s)and Client Services Team/s, and keep copies for your records.

Each project will be assigned a project number. Use the project number you receive from PHRN and/or the data linkage unit in all correspondence.

Inform client services staff of any changes to your contact information.