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ABS GOALS, STRATEGIES AND KEY PRIORITIES
Timely high quality statistical information that is readily accessible.
Continued trust and support of providers
Engaged, responsive and supportive providers who trust the ABS.
Long-term organisational sustainability
A capable, innovative and productive organisation.
Respected leader in the national and international statistical communities
The ABS is influential and sought after for independent information, advice and expertise.
KEY PRIORITIES DELIVERING THESE GOALS AND STRATEGIES
Transforming the way we collect, manage and deliver information: the ABS 2017 Program
The rapidly evolving information environment presents important opportunities for the ABS. As information becomes increasingly accessible and immediate, our partners expect Australia's statistical system to improve on a similar trajectory. The ABS 2017 program is addressing key concerns such as the timeliness, flexibility and agility of official statistics. To continue to meet expectations, our infrastructure needs to cope with higher volumes of data from a wider range of sources, and we need our business processes to enable us to quickly translate data into high-quality, relevant and trusted statistics.
The ABS 2017 program is transforming our business processes and information systems to address these challenges. This includes improvements to how we collect, collate, manage, use and disseminate statistical information.
The harmonisation of statistical production and information management approaches needed within the ABS are also needed by other national statistical offices. The ABS is collaborating internationally to develop the next generation of statistical infrastructure. Work currently underway in the international statistical community is focussing on business architecture; administrative data; new platforms for collection; and innovation in dissemination.
Delivering a successful predominantly digital Census in 2016
Australia's seventeenth national Census of Population and Housing, to be held in August 2016, will be significantly different from the previous Censuses. The 2016 Census will be the first Census with a majority of responses received online, with a target of six and a half million households using the eCensus, and the first Census that the majority of households are contacted via mail rather than by a Census collector. These major changes are necessary to ensure the long term sustainability of the Census program and to establish a foundation for future development and innovation that takes full advantage of the available technology.
The key goals for the 2016 Census are to:
In order to support the significant change in Census operations in 2016 the ABS needs to develop new capabilities in relation to field force management and coordination; mechanisms and systems to engage most citizens online; an up-to-date and accurate national residential address list; real-time monitoring of Census operations; and a smarter online form that is compatible with mobile devices. This capability development will be supported with an annual field testing program that will allow new processes, systems and methodologies to be tested in the real world and refined before they are required for operation in 2016.
Providing leadership and services to maximise the use of government data
There is untapped potential to use existing data and new data analytic techniques in a way that protects respondents and improves the efficiency and effectiveness of government. Consistent with the ABS's goal to be a respected leader in the national and international statistical communities, the ABS will lead significant whole-of-government initiatives including:
The ABS will also engage with whole-of-government priorities such as Big Data and Open Government, as well as APS Modernisation and Efficiency strategies, particularly through the provision of value add advice and services such as anonymisation services, data integration services and data access services.
Essential Statistical Assets for Australia
The aim of the ESA for Australia initiative is to allow for effective prioritisation of investment, focus and effort within the National Statistical Service, by identifying those essential statistical assets which are critical to decision-making in a complex and sometimes fragmented information environment across Australia.
There are four phases in the overall initiative:
Phase one of the initiative, the 2013 list of Essential Statistical Assets for Australia (ABS cat. no. 1395.0) is complete. The focus for 2014-15 will be progressing phase two (quality assessment and gap analysis of the ESA for Australia list) and phase three (identifying Australia's essential statistical infrastructure).
Spatial Statistical Framework
The ABS is responding to the challenge of better integrating statistical and geospatial information by developing the Statistical Spatial Framework (SSF). This framework will provide a common approach to connecting people-centric (socio-economic) information to a location and will improve the accessibility and usability of this spatially-enabled information. The SSF will help any organisation wanting to understand people, society and the economy in the context of place.
National Statistics Policy
The National Statistics Policy (NSP) has two main purposes. It provides a mechanism to improve the overall functionality and utility of the national statistical system by ensuring statistical activities are effectively coordinated, and it provides goals for the system. The NSP:
Since May 2013, the ABS has worked with stakeholders from other government departments (both Australian Government and State/Territory Governments) to develop a draft NSP. The draft policy was discussed by the Australian Statistics Advisory Council in June 2014 and the aim is to finalise the policy in 2014-15.
Adoption and promotion of the NSP by all participants within the national statistical system is central to maintaining an effective and efficient statistical service that meets the needs of government and society, and is both trustworthy and trusted.
Reducing regulatory burden and red tape
The Government’s Deregulation Agenda aims to reduce unnecessary red tape costs on individuals, businesses and community organisations. The following ABS initiatives are contributing to this objective:
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