Facts and Figures Definitions

Annual Business Inquiry

The Annual Business Inquiry (ABI) is an employer survey conducted under the Statistics of Trade Act 1947. The survey asks for a profile of the employees of a sample of around 78,000 businesses in December of each year. The sample is drawn from the Inter-Departmental Business Register (IDBR), a comprehensive list of UK businesses that is used by the Government for statistical purposes.

The ABI records the number of jobs held by employees - it therefore excludes self-employed, government-supported trainees and HM Forces. It records each job at the location of an employee's workplace (rather than at the location of the business's main office).
In the ABI, part-time employees are those working for 30 or fewer hours per week.
"Tourism-related" jobs includes the following sectors: hotels, camping sites, restaurants, bars, activities of travel agencies, library, archives, museums, sporting activities, and other recreational activities.

Since 2009, the Business Register Employment Survey (BRES) has replaced the Annual Business Inquiry Part 1 (ABI/1) employee estimates as the source of employee jobs.

Annual Population Survey (APS)

The Annual Population Survey (APS) is a combined survey of households in Great Britain. Its purpose is to provide information on key social and socio-economic variables between the 10-yearly censuses, with particular emphasis on providing information relating to small geographical areas.

Since its introduction in 2004 as a residence based labour market survey, the APS has been the primary source for most labour supply data in the United Kingdom. It is the largest regular household survey in the UK, recording data from a sample of around 256,000 people aged 16 and over. It includes data from the Labour Force Survey (LFS), plus further sample boosts in England, Wales and Scotland.

As APS estimates are based on statistical samples, they are subject to sampling variability. This means that if another sample for the same period were drawn, a different estimate might be produced. In general, the larger the number of people in the sample, the smaller the variation between estimates. Estimates for smaller areas such as local/unitary authorities are therefore less reliable than those for larger areas such as regions and countries.

Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings

The Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings (ASHE) provides information about the levels, distribution and make-up of earnings and hours worked for employees in all industries and occupations. The tables contain UK data on earnings for employees by sex and full-time/part-time workers.

Earnings by residence The ASHE figures used in Labour Market Profiles show the median earnings in pounds for employees living in the area who are on adult rates of pay and whose pay was not affected by absence. Median earnings are used rather than average/mean as the median is less likely to be influenced by extreme values.

ASHE is based on a 1 per cent sample of employees, information on whose earnings and hours is obtained from employers. The survey does not cover self-employed. Information relates to a pay period in April.

The earnings information collected relates to gross pay before tax, national insurance or other deductions, and excludes payments in kind. It is restricted to earnings relating to the survey pay period and so excludes payments of arrears from another period made during the survey period; any payments due as a result of a pay settlement but not yet paid at the time of the survey will also be excluded.

Earnings by workplace The ASHE figures used in Labour Market Profiles show the median earnings in pounds for employees working in the area who are on adults rates of pay and whose pay was not affected by absence. Median earnings are used rather than average/mean as the median is less likely to be influenced by extreme values.

ASHE is based on a 1 per cent sample of employees, information on whose earnings and hours is obtained from employers. The survey does not cover self-employed. Information relates to a pay period in April.

The earnings information collected relates to gross pay before tax, national insurance or other deductions, and excludes payments in kind. It is restricted to earnings relating to the survey pay period and so excludes payments of arrears from another period made during the survey period; any payments due as a result of a pay settlement but not yet paid at the time of the survey will also be excluded.

Benefits and pensions

Certain benefits and pensions are available for people of working age, people of pensionable age, disabled people and carers, and people with children. These benefits and pensions are administered and paid by the Department for Work and Pensions or the Job Centre Plus. Housing and Council Tax Benefits are available to help people on low incomes with their rent and council tax payments. These benefits are administered and paid by the Council.

The qualifying conditions for claiming and receiving these benefits are detailed and precise. Follow the link below to the Department for Work and Pensions A - Z search on all pensions and benefits that are available. Also see the Housing and Council Tax Benefit information on Basingstoke and Deane's own website.

Percentage of working age population claiming key benefits This dataset refers to numbers of working age benefit claimants - working age defined as all people aged 16 to 64. The dataset provides counts of benefit claimants categorised by their "statistical group" (that is, their main reason for interacting with the benefits system. If claimants are claiming more than one benefit then they are categorised according to a benefits hierarchy, thus avoiding double counting. The dataset includes claimants of Bereavement Allowance, Carer's Allowance, Disability Living Allowance, Incapacity Benefit/Severe Disablement Allowance, Income Support, Job Seekers Allowance, Pension Credit and Widows Benefit.

Each claimant can only be assigned to one of eight statistical groups in the following priority order:
Job Seekers: Job Seekers Allowance claimants;
Incapacity Benefits: Incapacity Benefit or Severe Disablement Allowance claimants;
Lone parent: Income Support claimants with a child under 16 and no partner;
Carer: Carers Allowance claimants;
Others on income related benefit: Other Income Support (including IS Disability Premium) or Pension Credit claimants under pension age;
Disabled: Disability Living Allowance;
Bereaved: Widows Benefit, Bereavement Benefit or Industrial Death Benefit claimants.

The Department for Work and Pensions uses the Mid Year Population Estimates as the working age population denominator. For more local analyses, data may be presented using the Hampshire County Council Small Area Population Forecasts (SAPF) as a population denominator. Where SAPF is used, this will be indicated alongside the data presented.

Business Register Employment Survey

The Business Register Employment Survey (BRES) provides the definitive source of official Government employee statistics, from which small area analyses can be derived at varying industrial and geographical levels. BRES is based on a sample survey, so year on year results may be subject to some fluctuations.

High level UK BRES estimates are published on the ONS website, while detailed GB regional estimates are published on NOMIS.

Economic activity and unemployment

Economically active: People aged 16 and over who are either in employment or unemployed.

Economic activity rate (working age): The number of people aged 16-64 who are economically active, expressed as a percentage of all working age people.

In employment: People aged 16 or over who did some paid work in the reference week (whether as an employee or self employed); those who had a job that they were temporarily away from (on holiday, for example); those on Government supported training and employment programmes; and those doing unpaid family work.

Employment rate (working age): The number of people in employment aged 16-64 expressed as a percentage of all working age people.

Employees and self employed: The division between employees and self employed is based on survey respondents' own assessment of their employment status. The percentage shows the number in each category as a percentage of all working age people. The sum of employees and self employed will not equal the figure in employment due to the inclusion of those on government-supported training and employment programmes, and those doing unpaid family work in the latter.

Unemployment: Refers to people without a job who were available to start work in the two weeks following their interview and who had either looked for work in the four weeks prior to interview or were waiting to start a job they had already obtained.

The Office for National Statistics publication, "How exactly is unemployment measured?", explores the differences between various indicators used to assess the extent of unemployment. This can be found at the bottom of this page. A fact sheet, "Comparisons between unemployment and the claimant count", also produced by ONS, is also attached at the bottom of this page.

Model based unemployed: As unemployed people form a small percentage of the population, the APS unemployed estimates within local authorities are based on very small samples, which for many areas would be unreliable. To overcome this, ONS has developed a statistical model which provides better estimates of total unemployed for unitary authorities and local authority districts (unemployment estimates for counties are direct survey estimates). Model based estimates are not produced for male or female unemployed.

The model based estimate improves on the APS estimate by borrowing strength from the claimant count to produce an estimate that is more precise (ie. has a smaller confidence interval). The claimant count is not itself a measure of unemployment, but is strongly correlated with unemployment, and, as it is an administrative count, is known without sampling error. The gain in precision is greatest for areas with small sample sizes.

Unemployment rate (working age): The number of unemployed people aged 16-64 expressed as a percentage of the economically active population aged 16-64.

Economically inactive: People who are neither in employment nor unemployed. This group includes, for example, all those who were looking after a home or retired.

Economically inactive - wanting a job: People not in employment who want a job but are not classed as unemployed because they have either not sought work in the last four weeks or are not available to start work.

Economically inactive - not wanting a job: People who are neither in employment nor unemployed and who do not want a job.

Experimental Statistics

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) uses the term "Experimental Statistics" to describe statistics that are in the testing phase and are not fully developed. The limitations of each series of data are given in the information that accompanies it. Typically, experimental statistics arise when a set of data is new or there is a change to existing data, when testing and quality checks are still being carried out and when there is considerable or immediate value to users to publish.

Experimental statistics can reflect new methods of collection and presentation which are still subject to modification, partial coverage of data or partial modification of data in the light of user feedback to date.

The aims of publication of such statistics could be for consultation - for ONS to receive informed feedback from potential users; acclimatisation - where ONS wish users to become accustomed to different presentations; and to provide a wider range of data to users, providing limitations of the data are well explained.

Family group

The family group or "nearest neighbours" model has been developed by the Institute of Public Finance (IPF) to aid local authorities in comparative and benchmarking exercises. This model was published in April 2007. Family groups are calculated using a wide range of socio-economic indicators. Within the family group for Basingstoke and Deane are: Ashford, Aylesbury Vale, Chelmsford, Cherwell, Colchester, Dacorum, East Hertfordshire, Harrogate, Huntingdonshire, Maidstone, South Oxfordshire, Test Valley, Tonbridge & Malling, Vale of White Horse, and Wycombe.

Indicators used to assess similarity are: population (and age breakdown for people aged 0-17, 0-4, 11+, 16-24, 65-74, 75-84, 85+), population density and sparsity (output area based), taxbase per head of population, % unemployment, % daytime net inflow (commuting), retail premises per 1,000 population, housing benefit caseload (weighted), % of people born outside UK & Ireland, % of households with less than 4 rooms, % of households in social rented accommodation, % of persons in lower NS-SEC social groups, standard mortality ratio for all persons, non-domestic rateable value per head of population, % of properties in bands A-D, % of properties in bands E-H, proportion of males and females, working age population, day and night visitors, Income Support claimants, Indices of Multiple Deprivation.

Hampshire County Council Small Area Population Forecast

Hampshire County Council produces Small Area Population Forecasts (SAPF) annually. Each set of forecasts commences from 1st April of the year prior to publication, based on population estimates by place of residence rolled forward from the 2001 Census.

The base year population estimates are rolled forward from 2001 incorporating known births and deaths, known dwelling completions and in and out flows of migrants - in migrants to the new dwellings completions, and in and out migrants from the existing stock of dwellings. Students are counted at their term time address.

The forecasts are based on future dwellings supply, which includes all large and small sites with planning permission, or allocated in local plans as at 1st April in the base year. Assessments have been made on the scale, phasing, and likely locations of development on urban capacity and large windfall sites.

As these rates of development may not be achieved on all sites, the population forecasts should be regarded as towards the upper end of the possible range.

Click here for the latest Small Area Population Forecasts, together with the methodology used to produce the forecasts.

Job Seekers Allowance

JSA claimant count records the number of people claiming Jobseekers Allowance (JSA) and National Insurance credits at Jobcentre Plus local offices. People claiming JSA must declare that they are out of work, capable of, available for and actively seeking work during the week in which the claim is made.

The percentage figures express the number of claimants resident in an area as a percentage of the population aged 16-64 resident in that area. The working age population figures used to calculate claimant count proportions are derived from the appropriate mid-year population estimates.

The count of total JSA claimants is mostly derived from the Jobcentre Plus computer records. For various reasons, e.g. when a claimant's National Insurance number is not known, a few claims have to be dealt with manually by local offices. These clerical claims, which amount to less than 1 per cent of the total, are counted separately and not analysed in as much detail as the computerised claims. The count of total JSA claimants includes clerical claims, but only the computerised claims are analysed by age and duration.
(Source: Nomis)

Knowledge Economy

Within the economy, the ability to produce, use, share and analyse knowledge has become increasingly important as a source of economic growth and wealth creation in all sectors of the economy. Knowledge intensive industries, according to the Eurostat definition include high to medium technology manufacturing, finance, business services, communications, health, education, cultural services, air and sea travel. Knowledge intensive occupations are defined by the proxy of mangers, professionals, associate professionals and technical, or by qualifications level 4 (those with a degree or above).

The analysis within the Profile Online uses the Local Futures/Local Knowledge definition of "knowledge economy". This is based on selected Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) codes.

"Knowledge-driven" sectors includes the following categories of business: Aerospace; Electric machinery and optical equipment; Printing, publishing, recorded media; Chemicals; Energy; Telecomms, computer & related services, R&D; Finance, business services; Air transport services; and Recreational & cultural services.

Knowledge-driven production:
This indicator is unique to Local Knowledge. "Knowledge-driven" production sectors are: Aerospace; Electric machinery and optical equipment; Printing, publishing, recorded media; Chemicals; and Energy.

Knowledge-driven services:
The proportion of all businesses in the following "Knowledge-driven" services: Telecomms, computer & related services, R&D; Finance, business services; Air transport services; and Recreational & cultural services.

Labour Market Profiles

Labour Market Profiles are available for all local authorities, Local Enterprise Partnerships, wards and 2010 parliamentary constituencies, as well as national and regional levels at:

These Labour Market Profiles include data on population, employment, unemployment, qualifications, earnings, benefit claimants and businesses. Time-series and comparisons between areas are provided, together with associated definitions and explanations.

Mid Year Population Estimates

The Mid Year Population Estimates are available at national level by single year of age and sex and at local authority/health area by five year age group and sex. These include additional selected age groups and broad components of population change. Data is available on an annual basis from 1982 and is available one year in arrears, published in the summer of each year.

The estimated resident population of an area includes all people who usually live there, whatever their nationality. Members of HM and US Armed Forces in England and Wales are included on a residential basis wherever possible. HM Forces stationed outside England and Wales are not included. Students are taken to be resident at their term time address.

Further information is available.

Output areas and Super Output Areas

Geography is key to virtually all National Statistics, providing the structure for collecting, processing, storing and aggregating the data. The framework provided by geography is often the only factor different datasets have in common.

There are many different geographic unit types (administrative, health, electoral, postcode etc): their boundaries frequently do not align and many are liable to frequent revisions.

The Office for National Statistics has therefore introduced Census Output Areas and Super Output Areas to enable meaningful statistics to be produced and compared over time.

Output Area Geography
Electoral wards can vary greatly in size which is not ideal for nationwide comparisons. In addition, data which can safely be released for larger wards may not be released for smaller wards due to the need to protect the confidentiality of individuals. The Office for National Statistics, therefore, has developed a range of areas that would be of consistent size and whose boundaries would not change.

Census Output Areas (OAs) have been used for data collection and output of Census data since their introduction in England, Wales and Northern Ireland at the 2001 Census. Due to their relatively small size, OAs allow for a finer resolution of data analysis. They were designed to have similar population sizes and tenure/dwelling type profile. Urban/rural mixes were avoided where possible. They had approximately regular shapes and tended to be constrained by obvious boundaries such as major roads.

In England and Wales 2001 Census OAs are based on postcodes as at Census Day and fit within the boundaries of 2003 statistical wards (and parishes). If a postcode straddled an electoral ward/division (or parish) boundary, it was therefore split between two or more OAs. The minimum OA size is 40 resident households and 100 resident persons but the recommended size was rather larger at 125 households.

To support a range of potential requirements, Output Areas have been combined to form two layers of Super Output Areas known as Lower Layer Super Output Areas (LSOA) and Middle Layer Super Output Areas (MSOA). These are built from groups of the Output Areas (OAs) used for the 2001 Census and take into account measures of population size, mutual proximity and social homogeneity. They were introduced initially for use on the Neighbourhood Statistics (NeSS) website, but it was intended that they would eventually become the standard across National Statistics.

Output Area (OA): Minimum population 100; 40 households. There are 175,434 OAs in England (165,665) and Wales (9,769).

Lower Layer SOA: Minimum population 1000; mean 1500. Built from groups of OAs (typically 4-6) and nesting into 2003 Ward boundaries. There are 34,378 Lower Layer SOAs in England and Wales (32,482 in England, 1,896 in Wales).

Middle Layer SOA: Minimum population 5000; mean 7200. Built from groups of Lower Layer SOAs and constrained by the 2003 local authority boundaries used for 2001 Census outputs. There are 7,193 Middle Layer SOAs (6,780 in England, 413 in Wales).

Further information is available in A Beginner's Guide to UK Geography.

The Beginner's Guide to UK Geography is a simple guide and glossary of the main territorial units used in National Statistics work.

Small and medium enterprises (SME)

There is no single definition of a small firm - it can be based on the number of employees, turnover, balance sheet information or audit thresholds. However, the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) has published guidance on one definition of an SME along with the European Commision (EC) definition. Please note that there are other definitions, some of which do not include "micro-businesses" which have up to 10 employees.

BIS and EC definitions.

Standard Industrial Classification

The United Kingdom Standard Industrial Classification of Economic Activities (SIC) is used to classify business establishments and other statistical units by the type of economic activity in which they are engaged. A Standard Industrial Classification was first introduced into the UK in 1948 to provide a framework for the collection, tabulation, presentation and analysis of data. In addition, it can be used for administrative purposes and by non-government bodies as a convenient way of classifying industrial activities into a common structure.

Further information is available.