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Up for the count

Census Bureau tests Informed Delivery

Woman looks at envelope image on laptop screen
During a recent test in Providence, RI, Informed Delivery users who received questionnaires from the Census Bureau saw digital previews of the envelopes and could click on the image to complete the questionnaire online.

The U.S. Census Bureau recently tested Informed Delivery’s ability to raise awareness of the agency’s questionnaires.

Informed Delivery allows users to receive digital previews of their incoming mail. The free feature has more than 11 million users and is adding about 135,000 new subscribers each week.

During the test, residents in Providence, RI, received questionnaires from the agency in the mail. Providence was chosen because the area’s demographics allow the agency to test multiple versions of its questionnaire using different languages.

Residents who use Informed Delivery were able to see images of their questionnaire envelopes before they arrived. These users also had the option to click on the image to complete the questionnaire online.

Informed Delivery registrations increased 67 percent in the Providence ZIP Codes where the test was conducted.

“Our collaborative effort connected residents to the U.S. Census Bureau at a lower cost, while decreasing the normal registration cycle time,” said USPS Product Innovation Program Manager Harry Green Jr., who leads the organization’s Informed Delivery census pilot team.

The Census Bureau is gearing up for its nationwide 2020 census. The once-every-decade survey is used to determine the number of seats each state has in the U.S. House of Representatives, as well as how federal money is distributed to local communities.

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