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The DCC Residents’ Opinion Survey 2013

The DCC Residents’ Opinion Survey 2013

Dunedin (Thursday, 27 June 2013) – Letters have been sent out this week to 4,500 Dunedin residents, inviting them to take part in the DCC’s annual Residents’ Opinion Survey (ROS).

DCC General Manager Strategy and Development Dr Sue Bidrose says, “The ROS helps us gauge the views of Dunedin’s silent majority – it gives us a way to check in with some of those who are less likely to engage with the DCC through other avenues such as the Annual Plan process.”

This year, the residents randomly selected from the electoral roll will be invited to complete the ROS online using a unique code, rather than receiving a hard copy of the questionnaire. A hard copy can be made available on request.

The survey is also open to all residents online at www.dunedin.govt.nz/ros and, for the first time, will be sent to all members of the Dunedin Peoples’ Panel. To ensure the statistical validity of the Survey results, the responses from the people who were selected are used as the official results.

The Survey is open until 17 July. A reminder letter and hard copy of the questionnaire will be sent to those who haven’t responded about two weeks after the initial letter, a practice that has proved successful in increasing the response rate. The results are expected to be publicly available in late August.

Responses from residents who independently chose to complete the Survey online are analysed separately but still provide the DCC with valuable feedback about how it can improve its services.

Dr Bidrose says, “The move to encourage greater online response has been made to ensure that the DCC can deliver the Survey at the lowest cost to ratepayers and the environment - the higher the online response, the greater the cost savings.”

In another change to last year, all respondents will have the opportunity to enter a draw to win a prize. Each prize is worth $150 and three winners will be drawn who will be able to choose either a book voucher, a donation to a charity of your choice, a petrol voucher, a voucher for use at Dunedin Public Art Gallery or a voucher and tour for use at Toitū Otago Settlers Museum.

In 2012 the Survey cost approximately $38,500 to deliver. The exact cost varies every year depending on the level, timing and method of response as this determines printing, postage and data transcription costs. Costs are lower if randomly selected residents complete the Survey earlier and online so the DCC expects the cost to be lower this year.

Dr Bidrose adds, “We have been using this Survey for nearly 20 years now and it has become a valuable tool for guiding our decision-making process and prioritising expenditure. It focuses on service delivery and effectiveness, and asks questions about people's perceptions of our performance and we use some of the results as official measures of the performance of the DCC and its departments.”

This year, the Survey will be undertaken by independent research company Key Research which successfully tendered for the contract in 2013.


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