Pointless surveys!

It's that time of year again when the Office of National Statistics gets busy.

Just had a spate of Annual Surveys of Hours and Earnings for  several clients.

Seeing as most of these are owner managed firms on the typical PA level wage and the rest as dividends, it is hardly going to lead to an accurate analysis and probably means that the natiaonl average wage is actually a lot higher than reported.

You would have thought for accuracy they would ask a few questions like are you an owner manager, and of so do you take income as dividends - and then either exclude this data or ask what level of dividends you receive.

Still, i suppose it keeps them off the streets, but it is just another example of pointless form filling stifling business.

I don't suppose when RTI comes in we will see any reduction in the number of these surveys! 

 

Comments

National Statistics

Roland195 | | Permalink

I object to the National Statistics forms. All the information on them has to be reported to various other Government agencies at other times during the year so why they can't share this information between them would be a mystery except it keeps people in jobs as you say.

Not sure about some of the questions though - they seem very keen to know what entertainment pubs provide for instance. Is this information passed on to other parties e.g to ensure they are paying the proper rate for Sky TV, paying their PRS subscription etc? 

 

John Stokdyk's picture

I have to agree - and I'm guilty of perpetuating it!

John Stokdyk | | Permalink

Ohhh - you've hit on a sore spot there, OGA!

Pointless surveys have become the bane of my existence because they're so popular with PR and marketing people looking for a cheap headline (probably because surveys appeal to the marketing psyche).

But they also appeal to journalists who are conditioned to respond to "8 out of 10 cats" type headlines. My email inbox shows that I've received five of these types of press release in the past week - more than one a day.

And, I have to admit, we run them, as you can see from this recent selection:

 

 

(Oops - that last one is ours, but since it's based around a client satisfaction survey that we give to all entrants, at least it has a constructive purpose beyond the headlines.

Actually the PwC security breaches survey is an important piece of work too, and the study of managing partner attitudes and habits was quite interesting. I hope that when we do fall for PR survey bait that at least weare extracting information that might be useful to AccountingWEB members.

The ones that really rile me, though, are those that just come through with a few paragraphs in a press release, and no further statistical backing. They co straight into the digital dustbin.

Thanks for an entertaining post - and for keeping us on our toes! We'll be much more circumspect about running duff survey articles in future.

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