NLS Operations Alert

No. 20-71

DATE        :   November 3, 2020
TO            :   Network Libraries
FROM       :   David Spett, NLS Data and Analytics Officer
SUBJECT :   Upcoming Gallup surveys of patrons and former patrons

Last year, NLS teamed up with Gallup to survey current and potential patrons-more than 5,000 in total-about a variety of topics, including their technology access and comfort levels. We are excited to share the results of that survey with you at the National Conference, December 1-3.

Now NLS is planning two follow-up surveys with Gallup to dig deeper into what we learned last year. Samples of more than 10,000 patrons and former patrons will be invited to complete these surveys.

For patrons, we will be inquiring about a variety of topics, including satisfaction with various facets of NLS service, technological preferences and capacities, willingness to use BARD and BARD Mobile, and barriers that prevent them from using BARD and BARD Mobile.

For former patrons, we will be inquiring about why they stopped using NLS services. The ultimate goal of this survey is to reduce attrition and, as with the patron survey, to help NLS understand the best ways to improve patron satisfaction.

The questions will be new, but the survey methodologies will be identical to last year. First, Gallup will select samples that are generally representative of NLS patrons overall. On November 9, those selected will be sent via US Postal Service a large-print letter explaining the survey and providing them the opportunity to complete it either by phone or online. That letter will include a $1 bill, which Gallup has found increases response rates. If Gallup does not receive enough responses to the letter, they will make phone calls to patrons who did not respond and ask them to participate in the survey.

The goal is to survey at least 2,250 patrons, at least 500 of whom will be active BARD users, and at least 200 patrons who have left NLS services or who used to use BARD but stopped. If you receive questions from your patrons or former patrons asking if the survey is legitimate, please inform them that it is and that we would be grateful for their participation. Individual responses will remain confidential, and Gallup will never release any personal information.

We realize that many people who stop using NLS services do so because they are ill or have passed away. Gallup has been made aware of this, and their interviewers will express sympathy and condolence in the event that they reach a family member or loved one of someone who is ill or has passed away.

For more information, contact:
David Spett
Data and Analytics Officer
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