The telephone survey method is discussed in the light of the experiences of one research team investigating case management practices among nurses working in the community using a multiple-method design An account is given of the strategies employed to recruit a study sample, minimize non-response and bias and ensure the use of sound practices during data collection The findings highlight the benefits of using the telephone survey method when recruiting respondents across a wide geographical area and/or working within a continually changing environment However, the findings also highlight the challenge of non-response caused by non-contact and the resource implications of ‘doing more’ to recruit key informants via the telephone