Experiment: Proactive messaging to increase permanent resident address updates
Does an e-mail reminder increase the likelihood that clients will update their Canadian home address on file within 180 days of becoming a new permanent resident in Canada?
New permanent residents need to provide an up-to-date address to IRCC within 180 days of admission to Canada in order to be sent a permanent resident card. Are push notifications (i.e. e-mailed reminders) an effective tool to encourage new permanent residents to update their address prior to the deadline? We conducted a randomized A/B test on a sample of 1,545 clients who had landed in the preceding five months and who still had a 'pending address' on file. Our trial discovered that sending a simple email reminder could increase the address uptake rate by over 20%.
The experiment was a randomized A/B test on a sample of 1,545 clients who had landed in the preceding five months and who had a 'pending address' on file. Clients were randomly assigned to one of two research groups: 794 clients were in the control group (business as usual, i.e. no email reminder) and 751 clients were in the experimental group that received an address update reminder e-mail. The e-mail was customized for each recipient with their deadline for address renewal, which is 180 days from their admission to Canada date.
The e-mail was customized for each recipient with their deadline for address renewal, which is 180 days from their admission date to Canada as a permanent resident. We leveraged the Behavioural Insight that people are more likely to pay attention and to be more responsive toward messages that are personalized for them, but instructions on how to update their canadian address on file were also provided.
Our primary outcome was address updates which were tracked through our case management system. Our secondary outcome was client enquiries to the Client Support Center that related to address updates and questions or requests to change the information on file. We also tracked e-mail open and click-through rates for the experimental group through an email management system for descriptive purposes.
Sending an e-mail reminder increased address updates by 16 percentage points (a relative increase of more than 20%), p<.001.Those who received the e-mail updated their addresses quicker than those who did not receive the e-mail (88 vs 96 days). Sending the e-mail reminder reduced the number of clients with incoming calls to the CSC relating to file updates or information on file by 9 percentage points (a relative decrease of 48%).
Oct 28, 2020
Local Branch and/or Unit:
Client Experience Branch
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada