How the ABS is minimising the reporting load placed on businesses
There are a number of initiatives that the ABS is taking to minimise and monitor the provider load placed on businesses. These include:
· The establishment of the Statistical Clearing House (SCH) to minimise the burden of Commonwealth Government surveys on businesses by reducing survey duplication and ensuring proposed business survey methods and questionnaire designs are fit for purpose. The SCH is a central clearance point for business surveys that are run, funded, or conducted on behalf of the Commonwealth Government. More information on the SCH is available here.
· The implementation of ABS Online Survey forms which make it easier for businesses and individuals to provide data. These Online Survey forms are part of a Government initiative to provide greater convenience and therefore reduce provider load for businesses and individuals. Providers now have the flexibility to respond quickly using the Online Survey facility to complete their surveys. As a result, 80 percent of forms offered to ABS Business Survey respondents are now Online Survey forms, with an approximate 90 percent take up rate across the range of ABS business surveys.
· The use of administrative data to supplement or replace direct data collection where possible. This has allowed reductions in survey activity through discontinuing or reducing the sample size for some collections. The use of administrative data does not, however, completely reduce the need to undertake direct data collection.
· Working with businesses to minimise the reporting load by accepting careful estimates where precise information is not readily available. The ABS also provides an option for businesses to report data over the telephone.