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1.1 Metadata strategy
On 15 February 2012 the Board of the State Statistical Committee (hereinafter referred to as Committee) of the Republic of Azerbaijan confirmed the “Plan of Actions on creation of Quality Management and Metadata System in the State Statistical Committee for 2012-2013” (Plan of Actions) by its decree # 4/2. In accordance with the Plan of Actions the complex implementation of essential activities became possible in the field of statistical metadata system (hereinafter referred to as SMS).
The experience shows that statistical classifications related to metadata standards in the Committee are applied since 1996, the register of statistical units consisting of subregisters of legal persons, natural persons and persons received land share is conducted since 1995. And that gives evidence of partially presence of SMS in the Committee, its efficient management and continuous improvement during the several years.
In light of demands and great interest of users as well as necessity of SMS application for improvement of quality of production process and the results, and being a tool to decrease a risk of losing the knowledge caused by the change of employees’ workplaces, and considering UNECE, Eurostat and EFTA recommendation in Global Assessment of the National Statistical System of the Republic of Azerbaijan 2010 (http://www.stat.gov.az/source/others/G_Q_en.pdf), the efficient management of SMS required long-term approach rather than 2 years. In this view, plan of actions on SMS has been set out in “State Program on Development of Official Statistics in the Republic of Azerbaijan for 2013-2017” approved by the decree # 2621 of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan dated 21 December 2012, (State Program, http://www.stat.gov.az/menu/2/state_programs/2013_2017/indexen.php).
1.2 Current situation
As of 1 January 2013 new website of the Committee has been launched. Methodological explanations, use of SDDS, statistical classifications and etc. were placed in the old one; there was also possible uploading of e-documentation procedure and online submission of reports. The new website has been moved to gov.az domain.
The following e-services are operated in the website (www.stat.gov.az):
- Submission of statistical report forms;
- Presentation of dissemination calendar of statistical issues and press-releases;
- Submission of statistical data (indicators);
- Online sale of statistical publications (books);
- Online payment of administrative fines for violation of rules on statistical data submission.
New design of the website is more attractive. It enables dissemination of more detailed information (texts, tables, interactive tables, charts, diagrams) in several formats (PDF, XLS, HTML).
More detailed statistical database, classifications, above-mentioned e-services, statistical vocabulary, e-reports, e-library, “Google” search option and at last metadata section are provided for new website users.
“Metadata” page consists of three subpages: “Metadata on statistical indicators”, “Metadata on questionnaires” and “Other methodological explanations” (http://www.stat.gov.az/menu/7/). Metadata on over 1000 indicators and 250 questionnaires are placed at these pages. Metadata placed here are collected according to “Dublin Core” standard and it corresponds to “Requirements on creation of internet information resources of the state bodies” approved by decree # 189 of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Azerbaijan dated 4 September 2012.
On March-April 2013 “Euro SDMX Metadata Structure (ESMS)” was reviewed and since May metadata system had been developed based on this standard. At present an application of unique metadata structure composed of 21 concepts and 56 subconcepts has been launched. Some metadata in the section “Metadata on statistical indicators” of the “Metadata” page are issued based on SDMX standard. For ex.:
According to the Plan of Actions "ESS Standard on Quality Reports" was reviewed and the document referred to as “Standards and recommendations on quality assessment report” (Standard) had been prepared and approved by decree # 101/07 of the Committee dated 17 December 2012. On March-May 2013 subject-matter departments had prepared detailed reports on main statistical products and placed at the Committee web page (http://www.stat.gov.az/menu/2/quality/).
Total Quality Management in the Committee
Since creation of SMS in official statistics supports documentation of all processes and improvement of total quality it is appropriate to list actions implemented in this direction.
Actions implemented in 2010:
- Approval of policy and objectives in the field of quality;
- Establishment of Coordination Council on Quality;
- Appointment of Quality Representative;
- Preparation of Handbook on Quality (1st publication);
- Conduction of the survey on satisfaction of users needs related with quality of data and statistical activity (http://www.stat.gov.az/source/others/s_en.pdf).
Actions implemented in 2011:
- Preparation of Code of Practice of the State Statistical Bodies of the Republic of Azerbaijan;
- Establishment of the Department of Quality Management and Information Technologies;
- Conduction of Employee Satisfaction Survey;
- Preparation of rules on provision of users with microdata for research purposes.
Actions implemented in 2012:
- Approval of “Rules on responses by the State Statistical Committee to requests from international organizations”;
- Approval of Plan of Actions;
- Approval of the national versions of “Generic Statistical Business Process Model” (GSBPM), 1st edition, http://www.stat.gov.az/menu/2/quality/source/00_2.pdf;
- Approval of “Rules on elimination of errors occurred in the published and disseminated official statistical information”;
- Approval of the Standard, http://www.stat.gov.az/menu/2/quality/source/00_3.pdf;
- Approval of the State Program by decree of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan dated 21 December 2012.
Actions implemented in 2013:
- Approval of “Rules on classification and elimination of errors occurred in the reporting information”;
- Preparation of draft of “National quality assurance framework in official statistics system of the Republic of Azerbaijan”;
- Preparation of “Questionnaire and methodology for conduction of the survey on meeting of users needs related with quality of data and statistical activity”;
- Preparation and approval of national versions of “Statistical Metadata in a Corporate Context” and “Metadata Concepts, Standards, Models and Registries” (Part A and Part B);
- Approval of the 2nd edition of the national version of GSBPM;
- Preparation of 2nd publication of the Handbook on Quality;
- Preparation of quality reports on statistical products by main areas;
- Organization of internal audits for the purpose to study the situation of application of quality management documentation;
- Conduction of Employee Satisfaction Survey;
- Complex analysis of the results of internal audits by the Leadership;
- Carrying out of external certification audit in all departments of the Administration;
- Development of statistical processes based on GSBPM by main fields (products) of statistics;
- Carrying out of online survey on provision of users with statistical data(http://www.stat.gov.az/source/others/Sorgu_2013.pdf) and etc.
Actions implemented in 2014:
- “Plan of actions on creation of Quality Management System (QMS) in Baku, Ganja, Sumgayit and Mingechevir city, Barda and Lenkoran regional statistical offices for 2014-2015” has been approved;
- Questionnaire of one-time statistical survey on “Respondents satisfaction” and instructions on its filling have been approved;
- “European Foundation for Quality Management (EFQM) Excellence Model” has been studied and proposals on its application in the Committee have been presented to the Leadership;
- “Statistical processes by all statistical surveys” have been developed;
- “Unique register of software available in the system of the State Statistical Committee” has been created;
- ……….. (to be continued).
Policy and objectives in the field of quality approved by decree # 19/1 of the Committee dated 24 May 2010, and # 57/07s dated 10 December 2013 (available for all users at http://www.stat.gov.az/menu/2/quality/indexen.php), as well as Handbook on Quality, creation of Coordination Council on Quality, assignment of Quality Representative have significantly impacted on Total Quality of the organization.
Despite the less time passed since the creation of Quality Management System in the Committee (since 2010), issuing of a certificate of international competence on correspondence of QMS with ISO 9001:2008 standard by “Bureau Veritas” company could be noted as an important event in the Committee history(http://www.stat.gov.az/menu/2/quality/en/certificate.pdf). All of that resulted in significant enhancement of knowledge of employees about quality management, and team work in the field of SMS had been implemented.
To enable gaining of prompt practical results the new organizational structure has been adopted in the State Statistical Committee.
Chart 1. New organizational structure of the Committee (2013). http://www.stat.gov.az/menu/2/structure/en/structure_en.pdf