Webinar Q&A

The following questions were from attendees during the webinar. Answers have been provided here for your convenience.

Q: Regarding Count Team Regions within the Regional Command Center, is there a maximum number of regions we can set up? 

A: There is not a maximum number of regions! The only stipulation is that a single census tract is covered by a single team, to ensure there is no duplication of efforts or double counting. 

Q: Also regarding Count Team Regions, if our community had regions set up last year, will those carry over to this year’s Count activity? 

A: Please submit a request to helpdesk@simtechsolutions.com to bring forward previous years’ regions, or if you want to update your regions! 

Q: One of the potential strategies for minimizing contact during this year’s Count is to consider doing more observations and fewer interviews. How would this strategy impact data quality and reporting? 

A: It's important to keep in mind this strategy is really intended to be another tool in the toolbox, given the unique challenges surrounding conducting a Point in Time Count during a pandemic. While full interviews are the best option for garnering the highest data quality, this year’s Count may need to employ some other tactics while still being able to produce the HUD report off persons’ demographics.  

Counting Us and the Regional Command Center offer powerful tools for extrapolating missing data, using the HUD standards of data quality thresholds of at least 80% coverage. Alternatively, your community may benefit from using our Sampling and Enumeration tools. 

Q: In terms of the new feature for creating custom tags for survey responses and filtering by those tags, are they assigned in the app or through the Command Center? 

A: The tags are currently assigned within the Command Center. 

Q: When using the new feature for extrapolating demographic data for missing responses, can the extrapolated entries be flagged? And, what are the calculations based on, previous Count data or census data? 

A: You could flag records that are missing demographics that get extrapolated using the tagging feature. The extrapolations are based on the data collected during the current year’s Count—basically automating the HUD Data Extrapolation tool. For more information on the demographic extrapolation tool, please click here

Q: If we used geographic sampling last year for the Count, would we use the same high probability census tracts again this year? 

A: The same designations could be carried over; however, we recommend engagement with the community to verify those areas, as the population and/or locations may have shifted

Counting Us & Point in Time Count FAQs 

See our general frequently asked questions page for more FAQs. Below are a few relevant FAQS to the Conducting a Safe & Effective PIT Count During COVID-19 Webinar.

Q: What if our region decides not to conduct the 2021 Point in Time Count? 

A: Given the uncertainty surrounding the 2021 Count due to the pandemic and other factors, we understand that communities would benefit from flexibility in planning.  While we believe the 2021 Count can be conducted safely and effectively (see here) we will provide a credit for any services not provided if your community decides not to conduct the 2021 homeless count. More details on the tools and services that this credit can be applied can be found here

Q: What updates have been made to the tech recently? 

A: Your voices are heard! The feedback we have received from count admins and volunteers have resulted in this list of new features that have recently been added to the Counting Us app and the Command Center.