BMG Research is continuing to support local authorities in their efforts to understand the views and priorities of their residents.

For example, we have recently completed a 1,000 telephone interview study on behalf of Ashfield District Council. This research was aligned with the roll out of a new Corporate Plan within the Council which sets out the organisation’s values and commitments to residents. Our survey data will contribute to the development of a new ‘balanced scorecard’ of Place and Organisational measures to monitor the successful delivery of the new Corporate Plan. All 1,000 interviews were completed within a three week window from our own 100 seat call centre.

We have also just completed a large scale postal survey of Suffolk residents, seeking their views on the services the Council provides to them. With over 2,800 postal surveys returned to BMG Research, our analysis has sought to identify significant variations in opinion both spatially (by district), but also among demographic sub-sets of the population.

In the analysis of both these projects we have used the latest benchmarking data provided by the Local Government Association through its regular polling. The results from the latest of these polls (September 2015) have just been published at the end of April.

Alongside the LGA reports, BMG Research also has our own emerging capability to benchmark the views residents give on their local area; the way their Council runs things and the value for money their Council offers, via our regular online omnibus study. Running since November 2015 this omnibus is collecting data we know will be of value to our clients on an on-going basis via 1500 monthly online interviews. The resulting cumulative sample is both considerably larger than the LGA data set and can be interrogated in a more flexible way to provide benchmarks by region, by groups of neighbouring or comparable authorities and by deprivation measures. We are very excited about the opportunities this data set will offer as it continues to expand.

If you would like more information on our work in this area, or would like to add a question to our omnibus please feel free to contact steve.handley@bmgresearch.co.uk.