Create a New First Destination Survey

Tawnya -

The first destination tool in Handshake gives you the marketing, collection and reporting tools that you need to tell the success stories of your graduates. Learn how to create a first destination survey below.

If you'd like to read through some best practices for using FDS, see Handshake's Guide to Using the First Destination Survey.

1. Click First Destination on the left navigation bar, then click on New First Destination Survey in the upper-right corner of the page.



Key Dates

2. On the Key Dates tab, fill in the following fields, then click Next in the lower-right corner to move on: 

  • Report Year: the year that you will be reporting on
  • Survey Name: Make sure your first destination survey has a descriptive name that you can refer back to when analyzing. Note: you'll be able to set a different name for students to see on the next tab.
  • Graduation Groups: these are the different sets of graduating students that you will be sending the survey to. Learn more about graduation groups here. 
    • Example - send two different invitation and reminder emails to spring undergraduate and graduate students


Survey Details

3. The Survey Details tab is next to complete. Fill in the following fields: 

  • Survey Name: How this survey appears to students in emails and questionnaires. This is helpful if they are added to multiple first destination surveys.
  • Survey Type: Choose from one of the four dropdown selections (click the link below to see standard questions for each type): 
  • Is this survey mandatory? (Check the box if mandatory) This is only used for reporting purposes and will not be reflected in the student experience. This field will help to track how making a survey mandatory impacts response rates.
  • Salary Information Required (Check the box if required) Leave the box unchecked to allow students to submit responses without salary and pay schedule information. 
  • Disable Handshake Email Content? (Check the box to disable Handshake's content and enable fully-custom email content, with no Handshake default content besides a 'Take Survey Now' button.)
  • Include Handshake Incentive? Each August and December, Handshake will choose 10 students from participating schools to receive $250 Amazon gift cards. You may also specify custom incentives when setting up your emails.
    • Note: While the drawings are done in August and December, student emails will have a custom date that maps to your survey launch to ensure completion in a timely manner.
  • Send Recipient Emails? (Check the box to enable Handshake reminder emails) If unchecked, all invitation and reminder emails will be disabled. 
  • Minimum Graph data points: Students will see data compared to their classmates for their type of work and salary information, this will be the minimum responses necessary for students to see the information.
  • Sender Info: Invitations and reminder emails will appear to be sent from this person. Sender info can be further customized for each email.
  • Custom Questions: If you would like to ask additional questions on your first destination survey you can do so in a survey that you can attach here. You can also create a survey from this page if you have not yet added your additional questions in the surveys section. 
  • Advanced Options - Customize emails for each graduation group: If you are interested in setting custom invitation and reminder messages for each graduation group that you have setup please review the instructions here.


Timeline and Emails

4. Review the Timeline and Emails section of the First Destination setup. Make sure to check each graduation groups email invite and reminder dates using the drop down.


If you would like to change the dates of any of the emails, click Customize Timeline, then fill in the dates for each email. 



Once the dates have been designated, click Next (or Done, then Next if you are customizing the dates).

5. Enter in your custom message for the Invitation Email, and choose your default sender, or enter a custom one. Repeat this step for each of the following reminder emails: 

  • Reminder #1
  • Reminder #2
  • Reminder #3
  • Reminder #4
  • Final Reminder (Still Seeking)
  • Final Reminder (Unsubmitted)

If you are interested in seeing what your email will look like click Send Test Email. Note: this test will include information since the last time you saved the survey. If you don't see this option save your survey first.

If you choose to enable Handshake content, you can Click here to view First Destination Student Email Previews.

When you've finished customizing emails as necessary for each graduation group, click on Save or Update, in the lower-right corner. 


Add students to your FDS

6. After saving your emails, you'll be taken to the Students & Stats page, where you can add students to your FDS (and to appropriate Graduation Groups) by clicking on Add Students. A pop-up will appear, where you can type student emails individually or paste a list of student emails: 


You can also add students to the FDS via the Manage Students page.

Use the filters accordingly to narrow down your results (Example: Seniors or Graduation Date Range = May 1, 2020 - May 31, 2020), then put a check next to desired students. Click on the bulk action "More", and click on "Add to First Destination Survey". You'll need to select a survey and a graduation group, then confirm the addition.



Publish the FDS

7. To publish the survey, select Publish Survey in the upper-right corner of the page.




Once your survey is published, you can proceed with testing to confirm functionality of the setup selected. See this guide for more assistance testing: First Destination Survey (FDS) Testing Guide.

Once you are done with any testing, if you've selected to send recipient emails, you can simply wait for your invite and reminder emails to kick off for the graduation groups that you have added!

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