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Workplace address


'Workplace address' is the meshblock of the respondent's workplace. Respondents who stated that they work at home had the workplace address set equal to their usual residence address.

Relationship to questionnaire(s)

Data on workplace address comes from question 39 on the individual form (PDF 395kb).

Subject population

The subject population is the people, families, households or dwellings to whom the variable applies.

The subject population for this variable is the employed census usually resident population aged 15 years and over.

Non-response rate

There is no non-response category for the workplace address variable because respondents who were employed but did not state a workplace address were classified as 'New Zealand not further defined'. Respondents who stated a workplace address that could not be coded were also classified as 'New Zealand not further defined'.

Note that there is a difference between the workplace address variable and the workplace address indicator. The workplace address indicator describes whether the respondent works at home or away from home, whereas the workplace address variable consists of the meshblock in which the physical address of the respondent's workplace is situated. The non-response rate for the workplace address indicator was 5.9 percent in the 2006 Census and 12.2 percent in the 2001 Census.

Quality Management Strategy priority level

Workplace address is a supplementary variable.

The Census Quality Management Strategy assigns a priority level to all census variables.

Supplementary variables do not fit directly in with the main purpose of a census, but are still of importance to certain groups. These variables have third priority in terms of effort and resource.

All data must meet minimum quality standards in order to make it suitable for use.

Comparability with 1996 and 2001 Census data

There are issues affecting the comparability of this data with 1996 and 2001 Census data:

  • There was an issue in 2006 where usable responses were coded to 'New Zealand not further defined' instead of the correct meshblock. This was caused by an error in the processing system. Although this error was corrected to a large extent, it was not possible to fix all of the incorrect coding, as workplace address has third priority under the Quality Management Strategy. It is not possible to identify the extent of the impact of this problem, however, this may be reflected in the difference between the 2001 and 2006 'New Zealand not further defined' category. In 2001, 12.5 percent of the subject population was coded to 'New Zealand not further defined', compared with 14.5 percent in 2006. This has affected the comparability of the data over time.
  • Changes in meshblock boundaries and other geographic classifications will also affect the comparability of the data for this variable over time.

Significant issues

There are no other significant issues that users need to be aware of.

Other things to be aware of

(this section updated 30 August 2007)

  • In the 2006 Census approximately 40 percent of workplace addresses were manually coded from the workplace address written on census forms. The other 60 percent were coded by locating the respondents' business on Statistics New Zealand Business Frame, which is a comprehensive database of New Zealand Businesses and their structure. The Business Frame is derived and maintained from tax records with the primary purpose of acting as a statistical register for drawing and maintaining business surveys operated by Statistics New Zealand. Using a single centralised frame for all Statistics New Zealand business and economic surveys allows better management of respondent burden and ensures that classifications and statistical unit definitions are applied consistently. The quality of workplace address information in the census can be affected by a number of factors, including:
    • Timing – for the 2006 Census, a copy of the Business Frame was taken around November 2005. There can also be time lags in terms of businesses starting/ending/moving and this information being updated on the Frame.
    • The Business Frame maintenance strategy – this is stratified so that larger businesses receive more attention. Small businesses receive less frequent attention in order to reduce respondent burden.
    • The level of detail that respondents provide – where incomplete information is given, the response may be coded to a higher geographic level, or may not be able to be coded at all.
    • Business Frame matching – this is done on the legal name of the business, not the trading name, which can result in a non-match. (Wherever possible, non-matches are coded through a separate codefile).
  • There was a slight change in the structure of the question from that used in the 2001 Census. In 2006, there were four boxes for the address details and, in 2001, there was only one. There is some indication that this has lowered the non-response rate for the 'workplace address' indicator variable, but no real evidence to suggest it has affected the results for 'workplace address' itself.
  • Inconsistencies can occur when comparing 'worked at home' counts from the 'main means of travel to work' variable with 'work at home' counts from the 'workplace address' indicator variable. This is due to differences in the reference period, as the 'workplace address' question relates to the week ended 5 March 2006, whereas the 'travel to work' question relates only to the day 7 March 2006.
  • Respondents who stated that they worked across multiple areas (eg builders) were coded to 'no fixed address'.
  • All census data was subject to considerable checks (including edits) during processing and evaluation, to ensure that it meets quality standards and is suitable for use. These checks were applied to data supplied both on paper and on Internet forms. In addition to these quality checks, the Internet form had built-in editing functionality that directed respondents to the appropriate questions and ensured that their responses were valid. As a result of this, data from Internet forms may be of higher overall quality than data from paper forms. The significance of this will depend on the particular type of analysis being done.
  • There were differences between how the forms were completed on the Internet and on paper for this variable:
    • The Internet form allowed only one response to be selected for the work at home/work away from home tick boxes for the workplace address question. If a further response was selected, the response given previously disappeared. Multiple responses to this question were possible when forms were completed on paper.
    • On the Internet, it was only possible to give text responses if 'work away from home' was marked. When forms were completed on paper, it was possible to give a text response but not mark the 'work away from home' tick box.
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