CAA Participant Survey System
Perceptions of Quality and Results
Community Action Agencies
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format) by clicking here.
What do people think about
the quality and the results of the services they receive from your agency?
Now You Can Find Out!
Overview of the Participant Survey System for CAAs
The Customer Survey System measures participant perceptions of the
quality and results of your agency’s services.
The CAA Survey System is a simple system that:
|Lets you find out how people
feel about the variety and quality of services of your CAA;|
|Reports the results
of the services as perceived by participants;|
|Works for multiple literacy
|Is available in Spanish;|
|Is a proven system
specifically for CAA’s;|
|Encourages responses through
use of postage-paid response cards;|
|Is the most affordable
system available to CAA’s to accurately measure customer satisfaction;|
|Provides you with expert
analysis of survey findings in a detailed and understandable written report.|
It does this by asking customers a set of questions that are designed
to measure the major dimensions of service quality. It also lets you ask questions specifically about your program.
The Process Steps
- You tell us which programs you want
- Review the questions we drafted about service quality and results.
- Tell us which locations you want surveyed. We use this to code the response cards.
- For each location, you can select the specific questions from our list, or you can draft your own questions. We will work with you to make them as specific as possible.
- You estimate the numbers of people served at each program location. We tell you how many respondents are needed for a valid sample.
- You select or adapt "the message" that will be printed on the card. This is printed on the top of the postcard and explains the purpose of the survey.
- You select the method for distributing the surveys to participants that works for you.
- Mail or e-mail us the completed worksheet (enclosed) when you have made your selections.
- We draft the surveys and send them to you for your review and approval. Then, we print the survey cards or forms and send them to you. We print enough for all participants, even though we know that not all will respond.
- The participants fill out the cards and mail them back to us, using our Business Reply Mail permit number which includes pre-paid postage. This increases the number of responses.
- We tabulate the responses and analyze the results.
- We compare:
* different programs with each other;
* different locations with each other, e.g. different county offices or Head Start centers;
* overall totals and averages for the program.
- We prepare the confidential report and mail it to you. Our turn-around time from receiving the last survey card to mailing you the Report is typically less than one week.
- We provide you with specific recommendations about how to improve customer perceptions of the quality of your services.
- You read the report, call us to discuss any portion of it -- and use the findings to improve services in your agency.
- We store the surveys confidentially for 12 months and then dispose of them.
The report consists of narrative and numerical information based on the
survey responses. The survey results
are summarized in pie charts, bar graphs, and tables.
All numerical information is accompanied by a brief narrative which
explains the data.
The charts, graphs and tables will show:
|All the responses from each
program by location. |
|Comparisons of locations for
a program by question (all locations on all questions).|
|Comparisons of programs with
each other, e.g. Weatherization, food, LIHEAP, Head Start, etc.|
|Comparisons of your
programs/locations with state, regional, and national averages, if
|Analysis of responses that
may merit additional inquiry or follow-up.|
|Percentage of responses for
each question for each program or location (e.g. N = 31 or 42% of people
The narrative for each chart provides an interpretation of
the data. Report findings are based
on accepted statistical methodologies. A sample page from the report of the
hypothetical "California Community Action Agency (CCAA)” follows.
Figure 1 shows how respondents answered the question, “How well do staff
answer your questions?” The possible
answers were: Excellent (4), Satisfactory (3), Needs Improvement (2), and
Unacceptable (1). This shows the average
for each site.
1. Weatherization Program Ratings
Although the Blanca, Jimenez, Harding and East Side
locations are rated satisfactory or better with regard to Communication, at West
End communication could probably improve, as could
may be that the West End rating on this one
program is also causing the overall rating of CCAA’s quality to be lowered as
well. The West End
center should develop ways to provide more effective communication.
(Review the responses to the other survey questions from
to figure out if that location also also needs to improve communication
How Long Does it Take?
There are a few factors that affect the length of the survey
|Upon receipt of your selections, Teresa Wickstrom
immediately prepares the draft survey/s for your approval.|
|As soon as you approve the draft survey, Teresa prepares and prints them.
Depending on the number of programs to survey and the number of
surveys at each location, this can take between
one day and four days.|
|As soon as the surveys are printed, Teresa ships them
to you via First Class mail for distribution to participants
(2 to 5 days).
If you choose an alternate distribution method, such as sending us
mailing labels for those you wish to survey, the time factor increases and
depends on the number of envelopes required.|
|Once the surveys have been distributed to
participants, we allow a minimum of
two weeks and a maximum of four weeks for responses to come in via our
Business Reply Mail permit.
|Survey responses are entered into the database
immediately upon receipt.|
consecutive days have passed without receiving any additional surveys,
we then begin the data analysis and report writing process.
Typically it takes less than 5
working days to produce the Report.|
|We mail you the Report via First Class Mail
(2 to 5 days), unless you
specifically request another shipping method (via e-mail, Fax, FedEx, UPS,
or Priority Mail).|
|Our turn-around time is top-notch.|
The cost of the Customer Survey System is a
one-time only setup fee of $295, plus
$1.97 per response that we receive.
That includes: the initial design of the survey questions, the printing and
shipping of the
survey cards, the return postage for each card, database setup and our data
entry, analysis and report preparation. The table below shows examples of total costs for numbers of surveys
If this many surveys were received:
Setup fee (first year only)
Cost of surveys received:
be Year One’s Total cost:
Typically, somewhere between 5% and 30% of the total number of cards that
you distribute will be returned. If
you leave a pile on the counter, about 5% will be returned.
If staff distribute the cards and explain the purpose and value of the
survey, then the response rate will go up.
We will work with you to identify the numbers needed for a valid survey.
You can pre-determine the numbers to be included.
Download the Sign Up document (in PDF
format) by clicking here.