Monday, June 26, 2006

Survey Results

This is long overdue. My apologies.

Last April, we knew we were moving to new offices. We also knew that our old methods of doing things could be improved. Because of this, we created a survey for distribution to SBDC advisors, which Roger administered & tallied. Of the 112 people surveyed, we received 65 responses (nice response rate - thanks!)

Your responses were then the basis of the Research Network presentation at the Staff Training event in May. Since not every respondent came to our presentation, I thought you'd like to know the results:

1. Do you pose research requests for JUST your clients?
Just my clients (57)
For clients of others in the office (2)
Depends (6)

2. How often do you make requests to the RN?
Daily (2)
Two/three times a week (6)
Weekly (8)
Two/three times a month (22)
Monthly (9)
Rarely (14)
Never (0)
Other (4)

3. If the answer to the previous question is "rarely" or "never," please explain why (more than one might apply):
I do my own research (10)
I have interns to do my research (2)
I have to wait too long for the information (6)
I use other library/research services (1)

4. Do you make use of SBDCNET? How often? For what kind of questions?
No (23)
Thought we weren't supposed to (1)
Read their newsletter/go to their Web site (5)
What is it? (1)
Yes, will use again (8)
Yes, occasionally/rarely (7)

5. When do you make a request for client A, but not for client B? (more than one might apply)
The quality of the client (36)
The likelihood that the client will return for another session (25)
The difficulty of the question (36)
Have research in house file of frequently-used info (6)

6. If you would like to receive selected info from the RN electronically, how should it be done? (more than one might apply)
Mail a disc (3)
Put info on a secure section of SBDC internal Web site (13)
Send an e-mail with files attached (48)
Send an e-mail with info embedded into message (1)
Prefer it in print (10)

7. How do you process info received from the RN?
Hand over or mail without reviewing (7)
Review with client before handing over (43)
Keep a file with all info received from RN (14)
Keep a file of items we believe will be useful to other clients (34)
Keep no material (3)

8. What type of info sent by the RN is most useful? (can select more than one)
Business plans (8)
Industry trends (8)
Demographics (7)
Articles/literature search (5)
List of competitors (5)
Market research (5)
Unique, association-derived research (5)
Financial (4)
Industry-specific info (4)
Most/all is useful (4)
How-to Guides (3)

9. Ideally, what's the maximum number of CALENDAR days you're willing to wait for info from the RN?
Three (1)
Five (6)
Seven (5)
Ten (5)
Seven - Fourteen (1)
Ten - Fourteen (3)
Fourteen (24)
Fifteen (2)
Fourteen - Twenty-One (5)
Fourteen - Twenty-Eight (1)
Thirty (4)
Not a problem (2)

10. What services would make you use the RN more? What resources? (allowed to answer more than one)
Access to library catalog of materials you can borrow (22)
Access to electronic database info (6)
Specific resources (permits, etc.) (6)


Knowing this, we've been able to make some changes. Over half of our responses are being sent electronically, and that percentage will surey improve. Also, now that we have a stable staff of librarians and hard-working summer interns, and now that our technology is functioning much better, we've reduced the turnaround time from a dreadfully-long 28 days down to 6 days.

Additional changes to our internal procedures are in the works. You won't notice them directly, but, once enabled, will allow us to be much more efficient.

Thanks for your patience (and for getting to the end of this post)!

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