This section of the First Findings report provides information about the key characteristics of the AWRS sample to assist readers and prospective users of AWRS data to understand how AWRS data could be used to examine particular sub-groups or look at particular population characteristics.
More detailed information about the AWRS sample characteristics is available in the Technical notes.
The population estimates generated from the AWRS are broadly comparable to information about the employer population available from the ABS Counts of Australian Businesses catalogue (8165.0). The estimates for the employee population that have been derived from information supplied by enterprises broadly compare to estimates from the ABS Labour Force survey catalogue (6291.0), as do estimates for the employee population generated from employees who participated in the AWRS.
The AWRS is intended to be a resource for producing population estimates in relation to workplace relations matters and it will enable robust analysis of employment and workplace relations matters that are not canvassed by other national surveys.
The information about enterprises and employees that is available through the AWRS dataset has been collected for the purpose of giving context to the workplace relations practices reported by enterprises and the experiences of employees. The AWRS, however, should not be a substitute for ABS catalogues that provide more robust estimates of the employer and employee populations in Australia, primarily due to the significantly larger sample sizes and higher response rates that ABS estimates are based on.
The data collected through the AWRS surveys have been weighted up to population estimates sourced from ABS catalogues. Information about how AWRS survey data have been prepared to be representative of the broader population of employers and employees in Australia can be found in the Technical notes.
Methodological differences exist between how the AWRS survey data were generated and ABS data catalogues, which can have an impact on data estimates including, but not limited to, differences in data collection methodologies, survey populations, definition of concepts and categories and survey weighting methodologies.
For example, the ABS Counts of Australian Businesses catalogue is primarily sourced from the Australian Taxation Office records and represents businesses operating for profit rather than all employing enterprises. AWRS data have been sourced from enterprises via a combination of online surveys and telephone interviews and participation was entirely voluntary.
The ABS Labour Force survey data are sourced from households via face-to-face and telephone interview methods and includes all workers, not just employees. The AWRS sample of employees has been sourced via their employers with data collected via self-completion surveys.
Further information about the design and methodology of the AWRS is presented in the Introduction and the Technical notes.
Key enterprise and employee characteristics that formed the basis of the sample design are presented in the AWRS First Findings report.
Further information about AWRS sample characteristics can be found in the Technical notes.
Information about how the AWRS sample compares to key ABS catalogues will be published on this website when AWRS data becomes available for general use.