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Stakeholder satisfaction survey – you wrote, we listened

Thank you to all the customers, stakeholders, commissioners and committee members who responded to the recent survey we sent out in May.

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With ratings of 16 different aspects of our business, responses to six multiple-choice questions and nearly 1,000 open-ended comments, we received a wealth of feedback to help us with our continuous improvement.

A lot has happened in our operating environment since the previous survey in 2019 and this was a moment to check in to see what worked well, what could be improved on and what you’d like to see more of.

We’ve gone through a global pandemic seeing a shift in industries being able to work and apply the standards in that work. We’ve seen a subsequent growth in online working, putting further emphasis on digital connection. Within Standards New Zealand we’ve rolled out a new website, a trial of a digital platform, expansion of sponsored standards, and the addition of over 550 new publications. Previous feedback has helped shape the services we provide.

So, what did we learn from the recent survey?

Some key themes emerged:

Our new website

Overall this has been well received and the purchasing process seems to be going more smoothly for customers than our old system. Stakeholders suggested some improvements could be made to the search function on the website, which we are developing for you now.

Sponsorship of standards is highly valued

A large volume of respondents have taken advantage of the sponsored standards. With 144 standards sponsored across building and construction, energy and consumer products and healthcare delivery, we are one of very few national standards bodies in the world to provide access to sponsored standards – and sponsorship is something we continue to encourage commissioners and regulators to support, and we encourage associations and institutions to purchase Online Library subscriptions for use by their members.

Access is a priority

For some it’s having quick access, for others it’s having access in the right way. Access to standards plays a key part of Standards New Zealand’s forward focus. The survey told us that from our current available formats, users prefer PDF format, so we have prioritised making all our standards available in a text-searchable PDF format. We are currently working on creating browser-based digital formats and having those available as an alternative format for sale through our website.

Information and education are important

There were some great suggestions from people including running of seminars and webinars, and guidance videos, to help educate on standards and changes. We will be looking into how we might be able to provide more of this.

Wide range of benefits seen from using standards

The greatest benefit to users of standards is in helping them comply with laws and regulations. An increasing number of respondents to the latest survey, around half of all respondents, use standards to make their job easier to do and reduce risk.

More standards and faster development

There are requests for more standards to be developed or updated, including the adoption of more international standards. There is continued demand for developing robust, affordable standards faster. We continue to innovate for speed and explore new development models and have in place options to support this situation including the more flexible and affordable partnered development model, which allows us to work collaboratively with commissioners to update and create new standards. Organisations like the Energy Efficiency Conservation Authority (EECA) have also made good use of the Publicly Available Specification (or PAS) option to turn around pre-cursors to standards within around six months and be responsive to rapidly changing industries. Developing a PAS retains the benefits of the consensus process and guardianship of the document that Standards New Zealand offers.

Thank you for your feedback

Thank you to all those who took the time to respond to the survey. It is encouraging to see that overall, most people are happy with our performance, understand the benefits of standards and our process and enjoy engagement. These surveys provide valuable insights into how you use standards and help shape the future of Standards New Zealand.