Zencity’s ad-hoc surveys provide local governments with a rapid and cost-effective way to gauge public opinion on “here and now” decision points. These brief questionnaires can cover issues as broad as vaccine hesitancy to questions as specific as satisfaction with snow removal services.

There are two models available: Pulse surveys and CityAsk polls. In this article, we’ll cover what each one is, recommended use cases, and the process you can expect from start to finish with each one.

Note: Looking for another type of survey? For recurring resident satisfaction surveys, consider Zencity’s community survey. Law enforcement agencies interested in a recurring survey tailored to their departmental needs can read about our Blockwise solution.

Pulse surveys

Pulse surveys are short (~10 questions) questionnaires designed to gather quick results so you can make decisions on pressing issues.

Zencity offers two Pulse survey levels, each built to match a different need and community size:

Pulse Basic

Available for communities of all sizes, this survey is designed for highly specific questions, such as resolutions about backyard chickens or the snow removal example mentioned above. While we provide a questionnaire, crafted by our team of experts, the local government commissioning the survey is in charge of its distribution (with the aid of a shareable link, QR code, and social media and email templates from Zencity).

Pulse Premium

Available for communities of more than 20,000 residents, this survey is intended for gathering input from a large, representative sample of your residents on questions like how to allocate ARPA funding or the expansion of broadband infrastructure. Distribution is entirely handled by Zencity, with a representative sample guarantee.

Both Pulse surveys include the same 5 week turnaround time, the same format of approximately 10 questions, and the same end result deliverable of an executive report.

Survey process

Let’s review what you can expect when you run a Pulse Basic survey, Pulse Premium survey, or CityAsk poll.

When you run a Pulse Basic survey with Zencity, here’s the process you can expect:

  1. Define the issue or initiative you are interested in with the Zencity team

  2. Approve the questionnaire (~10 questions), crafted by a team of Zencity experts, with options to customize it to your community

  3. Utilize Zencity resources, including best practices, a shareable link and QR code, and social media and email templates to distribute the survey across your community

  4. 5 weeks after the survey start date, you will receive an executive report containing the results and actionable analysis

When you run a Pulse Premium survey with Zencity, here’s the process you can expect:

  1. Define the issue or initiative you are interested in with the Zencity team

  2. Approve the questionnaire (~10 questions), crafted by a team of Zencity experts, with options to customize it to your community

  3. Zencity digitally distributes the questionnaire to your residents, using census data to reach a representative sample of your community

  4. 5 weeks after the survey start date, you will receive an executive report containing the results and actionable analysis

How to run an ad-hoc survey

To discuss which ad-hoc survey option is right for your community and the question you want to answer, please reach out to your dedicated Customer Success Manager by email or send us a message via the chat below.

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