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CDG20- Digital Counties Survey (DCOS)


New for 2020: We have added a special COVID-19 response section as part of Category 12: Business Process Alignment – at the end of the category - to capture how state and local governments used technology to respond to the COVID-19 crisis. This section will be scored for completion only.

The Digital Counties Survey provides you with the opportunity to conduct an in-depth IT self-audit of your current operational status, accomplishments of the past year and future plans. It can also kickstart IT strategic planning exercises. The survey results enable you to benchmark your IT operations, accomplishments and plans against other counties in multiple ways. Additionally, you will have:
  • Nationwide recognition and possible awards for IT staff’s outstanding and improved performance
  • A third-party report source that helps you build credibility with departments and leadership
  • A launchpad for meaningful discussions with your stakeholders
  • Ideas and lessons learned to continue improvements for the coming year
The Center for Digital Government (CDG) survey, in partnership with the National Association of Counties (NACo), identifies and promotes best and emerging practices in the public-sector IT community. It believes that a highly coordinated and consistent enterprise approach to the planning, governance and management of digital technologies and services delivers the greatest impacts for aligning and supporting your county’s priorities for improving citizen, business and employee experience with county government. 

The extended survey submission deadline Monday, June 1, 2020, is confirmed.

The Digital Counties Survey has been redesigned to more accurately reflect the most important characteristics of the digital county. To make completing the survey easier, questions have been organized into categories to reduce data redundancy and question overlap. Additionally, demographic and context questions at the end of the survey, provide the opportunity to increase understanding of your county’s IT operations and external and internal challenges that you faced in the past year. All of these changes will help you describe your accomplishments in succinct, concrete measurable terms so your submission can be evaluated fairly and objectively.

CDG thanks the following sponsors for underwriting the survey: Akamai, Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud, Laserfiche, Oracle, SHI, Spectrum Enterprise, TeamDynamix, Tyler Technologies, and Veeam. Without their support, the survey awards program and its outcome publications would not be possible.
Table of Contents
*IMPORTANT* - DO NOT use the back button on your browser, use the back button at the bottom of the survey page to return to the table of contents.

(Please write N/A in the text boxes you will not be answering)

Completed: Every question and text box in the category has been answered or filled in with N/A
Answered: The category has been partially completed
Not started: No questions answered
Section Status Actions
Category 1: Aligned Leadership Not Started
Category 2: Citizen Centric Not Started
Category 3: Cybersecurity Not Started
Category 4: Data Governance/Transparency Not Started
Category 5: Data Driven Government Not Started
Category 6: IT Investment Not Started
Category 7: Sustainability Not Started
Category 8: Resilience Not Started
Category 9: Staff/Supported Not Started
Category 10: Continuous Innovation Not Started
Category 11: Connected Infrastructure Not Started
Category 12: Business Process Alignment Not Started
County Demographic Background and Context for County IT Not Started
Review, Finalize and Download a Copy of Your Submission Not Started
At the beginning of each category, you will find:
  • A category definition and terms used in category
  • Instructions on how to complete the questions
  • Identification of which questions will be scored or assigned completion credits
  • Current State questions require narratives about priorities, policies, strategies and IT solutions in place today.
  • Accomplishment questions require narratives about priorities, policies, strategies, new IT solutions or improvements to existing programs and installed IT solutions, completed in the last year(Please write N/A in the text boxes you will not be answering)
  • Accomplishment questions are structured to help you be brief, concise and accurate in documenting your accomplishments. The word limit is 300 words(Please write N/A in the text boxes you will not be answering)
  • Future questions ask about plans for the upcoming 12-18 months
  • Measurable performance improvement (demonstrated results) are critical to good survey scores so be sure to report concrete qualitative and quantitative data such as:
    • Cost savings or operational efficiencies
    • Increased citizen and/or staff satisfaction
    • Improved transaction processing or business decision making
    • Eased citizen burden or rework
    • Increased IT capacity
    • Enhanced county economic development opportunities
Scoring Criteria
All responses to Accomplishment narrative questions will be scored by a team of evaluators using these criteria:
  • Alignment with county priorities and policies
  • Delivery of measurable concrete impacts
  • Adoption of innovative approaches and/or technology solutions
  • Demonstrated multi-departmental or multi-jurisdictional collaboration
  • Demonstrated verifiable positive progress in the past year
  • URL references can be included
Scoring Method
Responses to all "Current State"/Accomplishment narrative questions will be scored. Together with completion credit points, they form the basis of assigning top ten rankings.

All Accomplishment narrative questions will be scored as follows:
  • Each Accomplishment question is scored as a whole. Accomplishment questions provide opportunities to document narratives. It is the quality of the narratives that affect your score.
  • The Scoring Criteria listed above are not mutually exclusive.
Future, all multiple choice, matrix, selection and ranking questions receive one (1) completion credit point for each answer. 

Optional questions provide the opportunity to add context or additional information not covered in your responses to Accomplishment questions. They do not receive completion credits.

  • The survey consists of ranked drag and drop, single choice, multiple choice and open ended text answers. 
  • All text boxes may be expanded by clicking and dragging in the bottom right corner of the text box. Please enter N/A in text boxes you will not be filling out
  • This survey gives you the ability to save and continue later.  Fill in the main survey contact information and click the save and continue button at the bottom of your screen to save your progress.
  • Answer a few questions and a "Save and continue later" bar will pop up at the bottom of the screen. Enter your email and click "Save". Your unique link to the survey will be sent to you (check your spam in case) and can be used to return and open your survey link later, from the same or another device and browser. It will contain saved answers from your previous session (you may need to refresh to see them).
  • Use the "Finalize" page to get a PDF of your answers that you have entered, and before the final submission.
  • Further instructions for completing the survey are located in the survey FAQs at