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8695.0 - Accommodation Services, Australia, 2006-07 Quality Declaration 
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 25/06/2008   
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INSTITUTIONAL ENVIRONMENT
The statistics presented in this publication were compiled from data collected from businesses predominantly involved in the provision of accommodation services, in respect of the 2006-07 financial year. The collection was conducted as part of the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) business survey program for the 2006-07 reference year. The data were collected under the authority of the Census and Statistics Act 1905.

For information about the institutional environment of the ABS, including its legislative obligations, financing and governance arrangements, and mechanisms for scrutiny of ABS operations, please see ABS Institutional Environment.

RELEVANCE
The main purpose of the survey was to measure the size and structure of accommodation services in Australia during the 2006-07 financial year. The information from this survey is an essential input to the benchmarking of the Tourism Satellite Account (TSA) also produced by the ABS. Additionally, the information is used by government policy makers, particularly the Commonwealth Government to assist in policy formulation and review, as well as by private sector analysts.


TIMELINESS
Survey questionnaires were mailed to accommodation businesses in mid-August 2007. The ABS aims to publish estimates from its business survey program within twelve months of the end of the reference period.

ACCURACY
The ABS aims to produce high quality data from its industry collections while minimising the reporting burden on businesses. To achieve this, extensive effort is put into survey and questionnaire design, collection procedures and processing. Estimates from previous iterations of this survey were produced using the number raised estimation methodology. The 2006-07 survey used generalised regression estimation. Generalised regression estimation is a form of ratio estimation which makes use of auxiliary data items which are strongly correlated with key data items directly collected by the ABS from businesses. The auxiliary variables used in this survey were turnover and wages from data sourced from the Australian Taxation Office (ATO). Use of this methodology allowed high quality national and state/territory statistics to be produced from a small sample of 803 businesses.

Two types of error can occur in estimates that are based on a sample survey: non-sampling error and sampling error.

Non-sampling error arises from inaccuracies in collecting, recording and processing the data. Every effort was made to minimise reporting error by the careful design of questionnaires, intensive training of survey analysts and efficient data processing procedures.
Non-sampling error also occurs when information cannot be obtained from all businesses selected in the survey. For the 2006-07, Accommodation Services Survey, there was an 88% response rate from all businesses that were surveyed and found to be operating during the reference period. Data were imputed for the remaining 12% of operating businesses. Imputed responses contributed 8% to the estimate of total income.

Sampling error occurs because a sample, rather than the entire population, is surveyed. It reflects the difference between estimates based on a sample and those that would have been obtained had a census been conducted. One measure of this difference is the standard error. There are about two chances in three that a sample estimate will differ by less than one standard error from the figure that would have been obtained if all businesses had been included in the survey, and about nineteen chances in twenty that the difference will be less than two standard errors.

Another measure of sampling error is the relative standard error, which is obtained by expressing the standard error as a percentage of the estimate to which it refers. The relative standard error is a useful measure in that it provides an immediate indication of the sampling error in percentage terms, and this avoids the need to refer also to the size of the estimate. Relative standard errors of key estimates are available in the Explanatory Notes of Accommodation Services, Australia (cat.no. 8695).


COHERENCE
The ABS has been conducting surveys of accommodation services periodically since 1979-80. While the ABS seeks to maximise consistency and comparability over time by minimising changes to the survey, sound survey practice requires ongoing development to maintain the integrity of the data, its relevance to the changing needs of users and the efficiency of the collection. Additionally, the irregular frequency of the surveys mitigates against designing them to produce reliable estimates of change over time.

Changes made to the Accommodation Services Survey over time include changes in sampling methods, estimation methods, concepts, data item definitions and classifications. In introducing such changes the ABS has revised previous estimates whenever feasible to maximise consistency and coherence with current estimates. For a full list of changes made between the 2003-04 and to 2006-07 cycles of the Accommodation Services Survey refer to the Explanatory Notes of Accommodation Services, Australia (cat. no. 8695.0).

INTERPRETABILITY
The estimates from the Accommodation Services Survey are only available as original series and are not seasonally or trend adjusted. Although financial data estimates in this publication relate to the full twelve months, employment estimates relate to the last pay period ending in June 2007, or the last pay period of the month specified, and business counts reflect only those businesses that were operating at 30 June 2007. As such, estimates of values per person employed or per business can be affected by any fluctuations in employment or business numbers during the reference period.

Further information on the terminology and other technical aspects associated with statistics from the Accommodation Services Survey can be found in the publication Accommodation Services, Australia (cat. no. 8695.0), which contains detailed Explanatory Notes, a Technical Note and a Glossary.


ACCESSIBILITY
Data from the 2006-07 Accommodation Services Survey are available in a variety of formats. The formats available free of charge on the ABS website are:
  • main features which include key findings commentary
  • a .pdf version of the publication
  • a spreadsheet which contains all the tables presented in the .pdf version of the publication.
    If the information you require is not available as a standard product, inquiries can be made by contacting the National Information and Referral Service on 1300 135 070 or Sophie Vassiliou on (03) 9615 7442.

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