Are we delivering a consistent experience for all of the people receiving our survey?

Home > Are we delivering a consistent experience for all of the people receiving our survey?

This simple question led one research organization to seek a better solution for inserting cash incentives into survey packages.

A single dollar bill can deliver a lot of value for a researcher.

Even the smallest monetary incentive is a proven way to increase survey response rates. But when you’re sending tens of thousands of surveys, how can you be sure that each and every survey contains a dollar bill (or two) like it is supposed to?


One of the most time and resource-intensive processes of mailing surveys with cash incentives is the traditional manual inserting process, where a team of people physically handle each envelope, insert a dollar bill, and repeat until thousands of surveys are stuffed and ready to mail.

There are some major pitfalls with this approach. The most obvious pitfall is time. Humans can only work so fast. The manual inserting process can delay your surveys from getting to people for days or weeks, depending on the size and scale of your program and the firepower of your internal team or outsourcing vendor.

The other major pitfall is that manual processes are notoriously error-prone. And since a person has to handle every envelope and every dollar bill there is a high probability for a number of inconsistencies – from envelopes with no cash incentives to envelopes with varying numbers of bills inserted. While it is accepted that there will be a margin of error associated with the manual inserting process, it’s impossible to determine just how accurate the process is unless each and every envelope stuffed is quality checked before it is mailed.

“There has to be a better way to ensure a consistent experience for our survey takers?”

– Project team at a major research organization

NPC partnered with the organization to understand the intricacies of their specific survey programs, and it was clear just how important a consistent and verifiable cash incentive process was to their goal of delivering a positive and equal experience for everyone taking their surveys.


NPC’s Automated Incentive Program (AIP)

Using camera verification technology and unique identifiers on each dollar bill, NPC developed an automated solution that enables each cash incentive to be tracked and traced throughout the production process.

This solution ensures that each and every survey package receives the intended incentive, and that 100% of dollar bills are accounted for throughout the entire process. It also eliminates the need for people to painstakingly manually insert the bills. This hands-free approach frees up valuable organizational resources and significantly reduces the time it takes to get surveys into people’s mailboxes.


  • A more consistent experience for people taking the survey
  • Verification that all survey packages contain the correct inserts in the correct order
  • Verification that 100% of cash incentives are accounted for throughout the production process
  • Condensed production-to-delivery times, resulting in people getting their surveys sooner

“Does every survey package contain a dollar bill? You don’t have to wonder or ‘hope for the best’ anymore.

We can now verify that the specified number of dollar bills is added to each survey package. This ensures that Jane Smith’s survey is printed and packaged exactly as intended — with the correct letter, dollar bill, survey, and return envelope, in the correct order.”

Mike Horetsky
Program Manager
NPC, Inc.
Download the Story (PDF)

Are we delivering a consistent experience for all of the people receiving our survey?

Cash incentive inserting

“Does every survey package contain a dollar bill? You don’t have to wonder or ‘hope for the best’ anymore.”
Download the Story (PDF)

About NPC

Critical customer communications, simplified.

NPC is a delivery engine for the critical communications your customers and organization depend on.

We’ve been removing the complexities and frustrations from large-scale, mission-critical customer communications for government and regulated industries for over 50 years. Security and quality are built into everything we do, from our strong company culture to our innovative technology-enabled solutions. We’re committed to our customers’ ongoing growth and success.
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Let’s talk about ways to improve the accuracy of your survey print & mail production processes.

Whether you’re looking to outsource the full survey data collection process or you need an outsourcing partner to handle the complex or large-scale survey programs outside the typical scope of your organization, we can help.

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