Follow-up Data Collection Resources and Information
Follow-up Data Collection Resources
When the Family Is Still in Services
- Get buy-in early on, by explaining how and why you’ll be following up after treatment ends.
- Gather as many contacts as possible and get permission to use them. Request email addresses, which are more likely to stay the same over time, and contact information for a friend or relative who would know the family’s whereabouts.
- Have families sign releases at intake giving permission to get follow-up data from probation and child welfare.
- Sample Follow Up Survey Contact Information Form for Use at Intake
Making Follow-up Manageable
- If resources are limited, focus energy on 6-month data collection.
- Do follow-up in chunks. For instance, do a monthly outreach to all families due for follow-up, rather than scheduling follow-up case-by-case.
- Look into web-based options for conducting surveys, which allows data to be compiled easily. For instance, Survey Monkey’s free Basic service allows up to 100 responses per survey, while their Gold plan ($300/year) allows unlimited surveys and responses.
- Follow-up Data Collection Tracking Tool
Getting a Response
- Use text to remind families that a survey has been sent via mail or email. Set up a free Google Voice account to send texts from an assigned number. Its possible send reminder messages to up to five people at one time. Click here to read instructions for sending SMS to multiple recipients.
- If conducting surveys by mail, plan to send out the survey three times to each family in order to get a response, and always include a Self-Addressed Stamped Envelope. Hand-writing the family’s address on the front of the envelope and adding a personal note on the back increases the likelihood it will be opened.
- Explain the reason for collecting follow-up data and why their participation matters.
- Offer a small incentive for participation, such as a program magnet or wristband or place each participant’s name in a drawing.
- Collecting Follow-up Outcomes Efficiently and Effectively
Sebrina Doyle, M.S. Research Coordinator at the Bennett Pierce Prevention Research Center