Collaborative Maintenance:

A: Send a request for a new collaborative to indicating how many collaboratives you need created. After paying, you will receive an email confirming the creation of the collaboratives.
A: You can change the name of your collaborative at any time. Once you log in and click on the collaborative name there will be a menu of options. At the bottom of this menu you will see “Collaborative Maintenance” link- click on this link to rename your collaborative.
A: Yes, you can use the PARTNER tool and survey as many times as you desire. Simply request that a new collaborative(s) be created for you at, and then manage that collaborative from your same manager account. The best approach to analyzing your subsequent collaboratives in the PARTNER tool is to always start with an empty tool– that is, one without data in it. An empty file is always available on the website. To download a new empty Analysis Tool, click here and click on “PARTNER EMPTY FILE”.
A: Yes, you can change the manager information under User Account on the toolbar when you log in. You can change the first name, last name, email, phone number, and password here. The only thing you cannot change is the username.

You can also have the new manager go online and register as a manager here:

Then they can email the  and we can transfer the survey you used in your collaborative under your manager ID to their collaborative in their manager ID.

A: Go to which is the “change password” function, enter the manager or respondent’s username and enter the original password as the “old” password and enter your new password again as the “new” password.
A: Go to which is the “change password” function, enter the manager or respondent’s username and enter the original password as the “old” password and enter the original password again as the “new” password. Try logging in again. If this does not work email the and we can manually reset your password.

Respondent List:

A: You can include the members of your collaborative, potential members, or anyone that you are interested in including in your network visualizations and analysis. You don’t have to send the survey to everyone (if you chose not to send it to some of the people on the list be sure to assign your email address to their ID).
A: Column A: Partner Organizations filters into Q1 and Q10 in the online survey. Q1 there is a drop down list and respondents choose who they are representing (the email invitation they receive to take the survey tells them who they are representative of, but if the org names were the same they would not know which one to choose). If you have 3 from the same organization the respondent will need to know which one to choose to represent themselves- so they do not choose one title meant for someone else, that is why we say to differentiate by program, department, or even last name if it is easiest. Also for Q10 they choose who they have a relationship with (whichever org name they choose in Q1 is not shown in Q10 because they cannot evaluate themselves.)
Column B: Short Names filter into the Analysis tool when you visualize your maps. So these names can be completely de-identified so only the research team knows who is linked to which short name, or you can make them acronyms or whatever is going to be easiest for you when you go to analyze your data. They have to be shorter than the longer org names because of the space on the maps; it would be hard to see with the long names.

Column C: Group filters into the Analysis tool when you visualize your maps. You can choose to evaluate maps of only certain groups together, separately, or all groups together. This is your way of giving some sort of attribute for example: gender, sector, service, domain they work on, etc.

Column D: Username – this has to be a unique username for each person. You can give everyone the same username with just a number on the end; for example you can use the collaborative name, abbreviation of the name, the project name, the regional area, etc.

Columns E, F, G: Last Name, First Name and Email, are only used for Step 3: Sending out emails (the intro email, the invitation, and any reminder emails). This information does not show in the survey nor is it stored in the data file in the Analysis Tool.

Column H and I: Password is only stored for the invitation email. You can use the same password for every respondent (we actually recommend this so that if anyone comes to you and asks what their username and password are you can easily identify it and track it). Respondents have the option of changing their password, but few rarely do.

A: While there is no minimum number of respondents, for it to be considered a network over a dyad you have to have at least 3 members. Small networks (3-5 organizations) could be too few to do the analysis in terms of learning things that the group doesn’t already know, but the bigger concern is that you are unlikely to see any variance in the relationships. That said, it might be worth it to administer the survey and see if you do see any differences, or learn something new.
While there is not necessarily a limit on the number of respondents you include, having a large list can create burden on your respondents when they answer the relational questions 11-18, because they will have to answer each of those question for everyone they choose in question 10. So if you have a list of 200+ organizations and most will choose 50-75 organizations in question 10 they will then have to answer the subsequent 8 questions about those 50-75 organizations. We have had managers upload lists of up to 200 respondents, but we have not had much experience with networks larger than that. We don’t recommend much more than 100 respondents or things become unmanageable in the analysis. Also with larger networks, it will be harder to specify connections because there is so much activity going on.
A: You can add a respondent to the Excel sheet that you used initially and then reload the sheet. You will get a message that it did not reload the ones already loaded, but did load the new ones.

*Note: Before you send out your invitations make sure that you have all respondents uploaded.

A:  No, you cannot list more than one representative from each organization.  However, if there are multiple representatives from the same organization in the collaborative, you will have to differentiate the Long Organization and Short Names because the system will not accept redundant Organization Names and Short Names. You can differentiate by program/department/domain, etc and you can choose to use de-identified short names as well. The reason you cannot have redundant names is because Organization Name filters into Q1 and Q10 in the online survey.  Q1 there is a drop down list and respondents choose who they are representing (the email invitation they receive to take the survey tells them who they are representative of, but if the org names were the same they would not know which one to choose).  If you have 3 from the same organization, like Hospital A, the respondent will need to know which one to choose to represent themselves- so they do not choose one title meant for someone else, that is why we say to differentiate by program, department, or even last name if it is easiest.  Also for Q10 they choose who they have a relationship with (whichever org name they choose in Q1 is not shown in Q10 because they cannot evaluate themselves.)  Short names are used to code the relational data for each respondent so those cannot be redundant.
A: We recommend doing it all at once (uploading a completed list and then sending out) just because sometimes doing multiple edits can create issues. And, methodologically it is not ok to send the invite email staggered, unless you have the full list of organizations already in it. You just want to be sure that you give everyone the opportunity to answer all questions about everyone. To be sure it works as it should, we recommend holding off sending until you have a complete list. The system will only generate one set of “invites” and once those are released any other organization added will not get an automated invite.
A: You must save the respondent data entry worksheet first as a text file before you can upload it into PARTNER. Before saving it, you will need to delete the top row. After you save it as an excel file use the “Save As” feature choosing to save it in “Other Formats” then in the drop down menu of file types choose “Text (Tab Delimited)”. Once you’ve saved it as a text file you should be able to upload it.
A:  This means that you are trying to upload respondents with the same organization name or the same short name.  The system will not accept redundant organization or short names.  You will need to modify your respondent list so that you are either using one contact per organization or you are differentiating by program/department/name, etc.
A:  No, you cannot delete a respondent once they have been created.   You can edit the information for the respondent, but you cannot delete them fully.  Email the PARTNER team at if you need to have a respondent removed.
A: No, because you cannot change the list of organizations once you have disseminated the survey. Doing so will cause errors in the analysis program.

*Note: Be sure your respondent is complete and accurate before you send out the survey to network members.

A:  Unfortunately once the invites have been released there is no way to re-create a new one.  You can however, manually send this individual the same text you used in your invite from your own personal email account and you can provide them with their username, password, and organization they are representing in the survey.  If you would like to send them a personalized link (which has their username and password filled in) please email us at with the username and password and we can create that link for you.


A: Under the resources tab there is a short document under Other Resources ( called “The Core Dimensions of Connectivity in Public Health Collaboratives” as well as some other useful articles on networks.

Link to article:

A: Yes you can modify most of the text of the survey questions and responses but for questions 1-12, however you must leave their formatting the same. Questions 13-18 cannot be modified. For most questions, you can add or delete any response option. If you add response options be sure to number the responses in the left box so the analysis tool knows which order to place them when you upload your data.
A: Under Step 2: Modify Survey, click the last bullet under number 2: Click here to copy one collaborative’s survey to another. There you can select which survey you would like to copy.
A: Yes, respondents can stop at any point and go back in to finish later. They just need to log in again with their credentials and it should have saved any of their responses to the point that they quit. This is true for all the questions.
A: Most likely the respondent is trying to take the survey in Internet Explorer. Usually if they open the survey in Mozilla the response box will be larger and you can make it bigger in Mozilla. If they try to log in on a different computer usually that also helps. If they do not have access to Mozilla or a different computer they can type their responses in Word and then paste it in the small box and then hit save.
A:  You cannot delete a question in the survey.  If you add any questions to the survey and you add one too many you will have to reset the survey to the default and then re-customize.  Under Step 2: Modify Survey; click the first bullet under 2: click here to use the standard PARTNER default survey.
A:  Yes you can by placing this around what you want to have bolded, underlined or italicized:  <b>text here</b> for bold; <u>text here</u> for underline; or <i>text here</i> for italics.  You can also create a paragraph break by inserting: <br><br>
A: The survey never officially closes, and you can download your data and import it into the analysis tool at any point after you have launched your survey.  We do recommend that you give respondents a deadline so they’ll complete it in time, if you’d like to tell them it will close by a certain date that is okay.
A: Yes, you can administer your survey in a paper format and then log in as that respondent and fill in their responses online.  Just make sure your paper version matches your online survey especially if you have respondents taking it both online and on paper.  Email us at if you have any questions about turning the survey into a paper format.

Emails from the PARTNER System and Response Rate:

A: No. You can send emails notifying your respondents from your own email by doing a mail merge. Microsoft word along with Outlook and other programs have mail merge features. Using this function, you can send everyone an email (and just insert the fields you want to include, like user ID and password) in the mail merge template.  This would then be in your sent email box. Feel free to ask for help to do this from the PARTNER team.
A: Yes, you can see who has not responded under “Step 3: Send Emails to respondents”, then click  the third link: then clink here to send a reminder e-mail to your respondents (recommended as an action a few days following the e-mail “invite”).  There you will be taken to a screen that shows you all your respondents and the percent of the survey they have completed.   In the Remind? Column you can uncheck any person you want but the box will automatically be checked if they person has not completed 100%.  You may get a few that have 97-99% and they may come back to you and say I finished the survey, but usually they missed a box or two when they were answering the relational questions 11-18.  So you can choose to remind those folks or just remind those who have not started or everyone, you can choose who the message goes out to.

The reminder email will not give the respondents their password like the invite did, but there is a way you can include the %org name and the %username in the email message.  You can write your email message by selecting the button that says “Create Email Message” above the list of respondents.   You can choose to include the password in the email message or tell them to refer back to the original message that contained the password.

A: The higher the response rate the better. It is important to have as many respondents as possible, particularly in evaluating a network. However, at times it is just not possible to get a 100% response rate so there are a few things you can keep in mind.  Managers rarely get 100% response rate, but the closer you can get to that, the better.  If you get at least 60% response rate you can feel good about it and 80% or more is really the best. What we’ve seen in the literature is that 75% or higher is really the best but sometimes that’s not realistic for managers.

If we consider each person as providing accurate information, then you might assume that even those that did not respond would have reported similar relationships, so there is a chance that you get a pretty complete picture even without everyone’s responses. Also, keep in mind that whatever feedback you get is more than they had before. Ultimately, this can be a problem with all survey research and a particular problem with social network surveys and therefore response rate should be reported (perhaps as a strength or a limitation) when reporting the results. We recommend reporting initial findings back to your network at various intervals as a method to encourage them to participate.

A: The Dillman method1 suggests that you can send email reminders up to six times. We recommend that if you know your respondents to use your best judgment. A phone call reminder can also be an effective way to notify some respondents. The best way to encourage people to respond is to emphasized how important their input is to the final evaluation of the network or collaborative. Sometimes offering an incentive will help encourage participation. For example, we will often develop a one page summary of the data we collect to let users know how their answers were analyzed and used in practice.

1 Hoddinott, Susan N. and Martin J. Bass. (1986). The Dillman total design survey method. Can Fam Physician, 32: 2366–2368.

A: Most likely their organization has a firewall and the invite message went into their SPAM or Junk Mail folder.  You can have them look for the email there or you can send them their username and password in an email from your personal/work account.   There is no way to avoid or know if the invite email will go to someone’s SPAM folder.  You can send an introduction email to respondents to give them the heads up that the invite will be on the way in a couple days and for them to look in their SPAM folders if it does not show up in their inbox.
A: Most likely these folks who have a 90-99% response rate usually missed a box or two when they were answering the relational questions 11-18.  So if they have a 98% response rate, they did not fill out 2 radials for questions 11-18.  Since they are answering questions 11-18 in a matrix form, it can be easy to miss a row.   You can ask them to go back through questions 11-18 and answer for those organizations or you can leave it be (as some may have skipped a question on purpose).

Data Analysis:

A: PARTNER data are meant to be used as a Quality Improvement process, focused on strategic planning (to steer decision-making). To do this you will need to identify your goals (plan), implement your collaborative activities (do), gather PARTNER data (study), and develop action steps to get you from where you “are” to where your goals indicate you “should be” (act). For further resources, see PARTNER recorded Web Demo 9, this article on Data Driven Management Strategies (Varda, 2011), or the Technical Manual.
A: Try enabling the macros in the analysis tool excel file. There should be an “Options” button that automatically appears, click the button and choose “Enable Macros”.
A: Yes, you can upload the data files in any order at any time. If you save a new file, it will contain updated data. If you want to save the old data, just make sure that you name the file differently from the old file.
A: The Introduction worksheet has five tabs. o First is Manage Your Data, which is where you upload new analysis files and update the data. o Second is Create Network Maps which goes into more detail in Section 2, Part 1 Visualizing Network Maps. o Third is Analyze Network Scores, which goes into more detail in Section 2, Part 2 Reporting on Network Scores. o Fourth is Analyze Results.  The Org-Info worksheet has the coded selections made by each organization that responded.  The Data worksheet has the information for the relational questions (questions 10-18). There is a head and a tail for every relationship chosen. So if Org A chose Org B, Org D, and Org E. There will be three rows with Org A as the head and then Org B, Org D, and Org E would each have their own row in the tail followed by Org A’s responses to questions 11-18 for that organization. The Data2 worksheet will be where you want to copy and paste out specific questions to visualize in a table (see table under 4. Displaying Resource Contributions, under Part 1). It not only has what each organization chose as their selection(s), but in the preceding columns also has each response listed and it is coded with 0’s and 1’s to get easy column (response) totals.  The List worksheet lists all of the survey questions and the responses available for each question. The Main worksheet is where the visualizations take place including the network maps, network scores, and other result graphs.
A: When you ask an open-ended question, the answers are put in the OrgInfo Sheet in the PARTNER Analysis Tool.
A:  Every time you update your network map or select a new question to analyze under Analyze Results the graphic on the Main sheet will change.  If you would like to copy the map or graph and place in a word document or PowerPoint you can simply copy the image by selecting it and hitting copy and then pasting in Paint and then saving it as a JPEG.  You can also take a screen shot of the map or graph and save it as a JPEG that way.
A: We often will turn the network data into an edgelist and then import it into UCINET as a DL file. We have also used PARTNER data in SPSS.  We are not familiar with GEPHI, but we can probably help turn it into the appropriate file if 1) you know which data you want to import and 2) what form it needs to be in.  Email us at