Hi neighbors! City officials are pleased to announce the City of Sanford will be conducting a comprehensive quality of life survey during the next few months. The survey will initially be available to randomly selected residents, who will receive a mailed invitation to participate. Soon after, all residents will be able to complete the survey online. Stay tuned for further announcements.
The instrument, known as The National Community Survey™, allows the City of Sanford to compare results and benchmark residents’ opinions against other communities across the country. The survey will include questions about quality of life, important characteristics of community, services provided by Sanford, and priorities for the future.
About The National Community Survey™ (The NCS™)
The NCS was among the first scientific surveys developed to gather resident opinion on a range of community issues, and has been used in more than 350 jurisdictions across 46 states. The NCS is a cost-effective survey of resident opinion and an important benchmarking tool that allows for comparison among communities. Communities using The NCS have reported that the tool improved service delivery, strengthened communications with community stakeholders and helped leaders identify clear priorities for use in strategic planning and budget setting. The NCS is the only resident survey endorsed by the International City/County Management Association and the National League of Cities.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Developed over 20 years ago and continually refined, The NCS is a survey of resident opinion that provides robust benchmark comparisons among communities across the nation. It has been used in more than 350 jurisdictions across 46 states. Communities using The NCS have reported that the tool improved service delivery, strengthened communications with community stakeholders, and helped leaders identify clear priorities for use in strategic planning and budget setting. It is the only resident survey endorsed by the International City/County Management Association and the National League of Cities.
- The Sampled Survey was designed to be as representative as possible of the population of the county. A sampling of community households are selected to participate and they are randomly selected from a comprehensive list of residential addresses as an effort to reduce bias and get feedback from all areas within the community. The sampled group is mailed a paper invitation and survey packet, though they may opt to fill out the survey online. Their link is unique to their household and should not be shared. This effort is to gather accurate data from the residents who make up our community today.
- The Open Participation Survey is offered to all residents so each voice in the community can be heard. This survey is hosted online only. It is identical to the Sampled Survey except that it asks if you are a resident of the community and to confirm which area of the community you live in.
The Sampled Survey will open August 24th.
The Open Participation Survey will begin September 21st.
Both surveys will close on October 5th at midnight.
- The Sampled Survey is for the randomly selected households only.
- The Open Participation Survey is open to all residentsfor the specific boundaries.
- The Sampled Survey is open July 5 through August 16 at midnight.
- The Open Participation Survey is open August 2 through August 16 at midnight.
- Your responses are confidential and no identifying information will be shared.
- This is a confidential survey conducted by an outside firm, so your identity is completely secure. https://info.polco.us/your-privacy
- Every effort is made to pose questions as neutrally as possible. The team of survey scientists put a tremendous amount of thought into this when developing the main survey. Because all opinions are welcome, the questions need to be a blend of easy to understand, simple to respond to, and neutral in the way they are asked. There are many methods with which this is accomplished, but one of the more noticeable ones are questions with “if at all” contained in the question.
For example: “How much of a priority, if at all, should it be for Warrenville to focus on the following initiatives?” is a neutral way of presenting the question, making it as easy to answer positively as it is negatively.
- If you received a postcard invitation and paper survey in the mail, then this survey has a unique link for randomly selected households only and should not be shared.
- We encourage everyone to share the Open Participation survey link with their neighbors. Stay tuned! The online survey will be open November 6th through November 20th at midnight.
The survey results will be used to help the City better the serve the community.
- We find that there are a few reasons why a link may not be working. First, when you are typing the URL into your address bar, make sure that it is typed exactly the same as how it appears on the invitation you received. Even one wrong character can make the URL unsearchable.
- Second, ensure that you are typing the URL into the address bar not the search bar. The survey links are not accessible through most search engines because we only want people from our community to participate.
- Polco is an online community engagement polling platform that is conducting The NCS. Polco launches surveys and analyzes the data, providing local governments and other public sector leaders with important information needed to make decisions within the community. Hundreds of organizations nationwide use Polco for strategic planning, budgeting, and empowering resident voices.
Polco (www.polco.us) was developed to quickly deploy and analyze surveys online, providing the agility to gather critical information from community stakeholders throughout the nation. We have created tools for governments, economic development organizations and nonprofits to measure community livability. Respondents to The NCS are asked to join the City’s Polco panel to see the survey results and continue to engage with the city on future research.