T4: Transparent processes and management

Organisations should have effective business processes and appropriate resources to support their statistical functions and be open about their plans, priorities and progress.

 

T4.1 Organisations should be transparent about their approach to public engagement with users, potential users, and other stakeholders with an interest in the public good served by the statistics.

T4.2 A work programme should be established and regularly reviewed. Statistics producers should be open about progress towards meeting priorities and objectives. Users and other stakeholders should be involved to help prioritise statistical plans.

T4.3 Sufficient human, financial and technological resources should be provided to deliver  statistical services that serve the public good.

T4.4 Good business practices should be maintained in the use of resources. Where appropriate, statistics producers should take opportunities to share resources and collaborate to achieve common goals and produce coherent statistics.

T4.5 Organisations should be open about their commitment to quality and make clear their approach to quality management. They should ensure that the organisational structure and tools are in place to manage quality effectively, and promote and adopt appropriate quality standards.

T4.6 Independent measures, such as internal and external audit, peer review and National Statistics Quality Reviews, should be used to evaluate the effectiveness of statistical processes. Statistics producers should be open about identified areas for improvement.

The Welsh Government produces all official statistics on housing for Wales and engages with a wide range of users and stakeholders on these statistics.

In 2013, statisticians in the Welsh Government refreshed and relaunched an existing user group as the Housing Information Group (HIG). The HIG meets three times a year (two themed meetings and one seminar) and acts as a forum for the Welsh Government, local authorities, housing associations, participating agencies, and the academic housing research community to share views about housing.

The HIG meetings are used to inform stakeholders and users about ongoing developments in policy, data collection and statistics and to discuss future developments to housing statistics. The Welsh Government publishes the agenda, minutes and actions from each meeting on its website.

In July 2016, the Welsh Government wrote to the Office for Statistics Regulation to request that the National Statistics designation of its Homelessness Statistics in Wales be temporarily suspended, as some local authorities faced difficulty in providing complete and accurate data following changes to the legislation that impacted the data collection.

Statisticians in the Welsh Government engaged extensively with local authorities to improve data collection practices and strengthen the quality assurance of the data used to produce these statistics. This involved issuing new guidance, holding workshops with local authorities to discuss difficulties in data collections and clarifying definitions and carrying out detailed reviews of individual data collection forms. The National Statistics status was restored in July 2017.

This demonstrates that the Welsh Government is transparent about its public engagement with users, potential users and stakeholders, and is open about its approach to quality management.

Ofsted inspects and regulates services that care for children and young people, and services providing education and skills for learners of all ages. Ofsted is an official statistics producer that publishes statistics on its inspections and outcomes.

Ofsted statisticians identified an opportunity to explore data in the Ages and Stages Questionnaire collected by NHS Digital. The Ages and Stages Questionnaire is used to assess the development of preschool children, with all children in England eligible for a development review around their second birthday. This opportunity was driven by a desire to provide Ofsted inspectors with more information about early years settings.

A secondment arrangement was established after securing buy-in from senior leadership in both organisations. This provided an Ofsted analyst with secure access to NHS Digital data sources, allowing them to take forward the project with the appropriate security controls.

This sharing of resources resulted in the release of a publication which described the exploratory analysis undertaken. The report was welcomed by both producer bodies and demonstrated the value in focussing on improving the quality of some of NHS Digital’s less frequently used data sources.

This work is a good example of statistics producers working together to share resources and collaborate on a project that benefits both users and producers.

DescriptionLinkSource
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