The diagram below illustrates the timescale needed to conduct a postal
lifestyle survey. You should use these timings as a guide - it is
beneficial to produce a time plan before you start the project which you
would need to agree with the agency who assists you with the research.
Agreeing a timescale at the beginning is an important stage of the
planning process. Timescales need to be realistic and also allow for
'slippage' on certain elements such as questionnaire design, printing of
questionnaires and sending out reminders. When to send a reminder is a
key part of the fieldwork process - it is important to monitor the
returns and the speed and quality of returns will essentially determine
when reminders need to be or can be sent.