Social Research Centre

Frequently asked questions

National Workforce Census

General information

What is the purpose of the National Workforce Census?

The NWC is a unique data collection that provides a national overview of the early childhood education and care workforce to help inform and develop government policies and programs, like the new National Children’s Education and Care Workforce Strategy.

 

With the inclusion of preschools in the collection, the Australian, state and territory governments are able to capture an all-encompassing representation of the sector over time, and guarantee that nationally consistent data on the early childhood education and care sector is available.

What information is collected by the NWC?

The National Workforce Census will collect detailed information on provider/service usage, children with additional needs, access to preschool/kindergarten programs and staff details including staff demographics, types of work, qualifications, experience, and current study.

Who needs to participate in the NWC?

The National Workforce Census is for:

  • all Child Care Subsidy (CCS) approved providers and services: Family day care services, Centre-based day care services, In-home care services and Outside school hours care services
  • dedicated state- or territory-run preschools and kindergartens.

Is the National Workforce Census compulsory?

It is mandatory for all CCS approved providers and services to participate.
This is a requirement of your approval under Family Assistance Law under section 67FH of A New Tax System (Family Assistance) (Administration) Act 1999.

Dedicated state- or territory- run preschools and kindergartens play a significant role in children’s education. Although the census is not mandatory for them, it is crucial their participation to ensure their valuable opinions are considered, and accurate data is captured for the entire sector.

When is the National Workforce Census?

Registration for the National Workforce Census begins in March for all services.  You will be notified when registration has opened for your service/s and invited to complete registration online.

You will be provided with a Login Code and asked to confirm your service details, including the email address of the key contact person who will complete the National Workforce Census. 

Your key contact will then be emailed a reminder to log in and complete the National Workforce Census online during the reference week.

The National Workforce Census collects information relating to a seven-day period or Reference Week.

The Reference Weeks are outlined in the table below:

 

States/Territories

Reference week

Vacation care

  

     Reference week 1

Victoria, Queensland, Western Australia and Northern Territory

Monday 8 April – Sunday 14 April 2024

     Reference week 2

Tasmania, New South Wales, Australian Capital Territory and South Australia

Monday 15 April – Sunday 21 April 2024

All other services

All

Monday 6 May – Sunday 12 May 2024

Who is conducting the National Workforce Census?

The Department of Education has engaged the Social Research Centre to conduct the National Workforce Census.

Who is the Social Research Centre?

Social Research Centre is Australia’s trusted evidence partner, delivering world-class, ethical and culturally-sound social research + evaluation. We provide innovative social research and evaluation services to Australian researchers, policymakers, academics and business leaders in order to support informed decision-making and advance our understanding of Australian Society and our place in the world.

Is the information collected confidential?


All data and personal information collected as part of the National Workforce Census is confidential, in accordance with legislative requirements. No individual or business will be identifiable in publicly available data.

Information collected as part of the National Workforce Census is protected information under the A New Tax System (Family Assistance) (Administration) Act 1999 (Family Assistance Administration Act). This means that the Department, and its contractor, may only use or disclose that information in accordance with that Act.

The Department of Education, its employees, contractors and agents (collectively, the department) are subject to the Privacy Act 1988 (the Privacy Act) and to the requirements of the Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) contained in the Privacy Act.

My Outside School Hours Care service uses support staff such as cooks, cleaners and gardeners who are employed by a school or other body/organisation. Do I need to count them as part of my OSHC service workforce in Section D of the NWC?

No, if the workers are not employed by the service, then you do not need to include them.

I offer a preschool or kindergarten program as part of my Centre Based Day Care service.  Will I have to complete the NWC twice?

No, you will not need to complete the Census twice. If you are a CCS approved Centre Based Day Care service that offers a preschool or kindergarten program, you only need to complete the Census once using the first registration Login Code you received from the Social Research Centre. Details about the preschool or kindergarten component of your service are submitted in Section C of the Census.

What is the 2024 NWC Privacy Notice and its purpose?

In addition to our privacy policy, we may need to explain specific privacy practices in more detail at other times. In such circumstances we develop and provide separate privacy notices to describe how we will handle the personal information that we collect.

The 2024 National Workforce Census Privacy Notice explains the National Workforce Census data collection and how the Department will use and disclose the information provided.

How can I make the Privacy Notice available to my staff?

The Privacy Notice is included as part of the initial registration letter sent to your service and in at the Social Research Centre website.

Some ways you can make this notice available to your staff are through staff newsletters and meetings, staff emails or staff notice boards.

What will National Workforce Census data be used for?

Data from the National Workforce Census will be used for policy and planning, data analysis and statistical and research purposes. Data may also be combined with information from other organisations to improve programs, policies and outcomes for the early childhood workforce and young children.

Further information about how the Department will use and disclose the National Workforce Census data can be found in the further information about the uses can be found in the Privacy Notice.

Who can I contact for more information?

If you have any questions about the National Workforce Census, please contact the National Workforce Census Helpline on 1800 800 996 (free call) or email nwc@srcentre.com.au

Regular updates on the National Workforce Census are available from this website.

Registration

How and when do I register for the National Workforce Census?

Registration for the National Workforce Census begins on 14 March 2024 for all services.

You will receive an individual Login Code for registering on the department website. Alternatively, you can click on the service registration link which redirects you to the registration page. We encourage you to complete registration as early as possible.

What if I have lost or misplaced my Login Code?

Your Login Code was included on the Registration letter sent to your service by the Social Research Centre. 

If you have misplaced your Login Code, please contact the NWC Helpline on (free call from 9:00am to 5:00pm AEST, Monday to Friday) or email nwc@srcentre.com.au.

What do I do if registration has closed?

If you are no longer able to register for the National Workforce Census online, please contact the National Workforce Census Helpline on 1800 800 (free call from 9:00am to 5:00pm AEST, Monday to Friday) or email nwc@srcentre.com.au.

Completion of the National Workforce Census

When do I complete the National Workforce Census?

We encourage you to complete the National Workforce Census in the days immediately after the Reference Week; ideally within two weeks of the Reference Week.

Services that submit their National Workforce Census by the due date will be entered in a draw to win a $1000 voucher for educational materials or equipment. There will be two vouchers awarded in each state and territory.

When is the reference week?

The National Workforce Census collects information relating to a seven-day period or reference week.

The reference weeks are:

 

States/Territories

Reference week

Vacation care

  

     Reference week 1

Victoria, Queensland, Western Australia and Northern Territory

Monday 8 April  Sunday 14 April 2024

     Reference week 2

Tasmania, New South Wales, Australian Capital Territory and South Australia

Monday 15 April  Sunday 21 April 2024

All other services

All

Monday 6 May – Sunday 12 May 2024

Is it possible to view a copy of the NWC questions?

 

Yes, the full list of questions to be asked will in the census will be provided to the key contact person responsible for completing the email and  also available at  https://srcentre.com.au/our-research/national-workforce-census

What if I have lost or misplaced my Login Code?

Your Login Code was included on the Registration letter. Alternatively, you can click on the service registration link provided in the registration email sent to your service by the Social Research Centre. 

Is it possible to complete the NWC over a number of sittings?

Yes, if you are unable to finish the National Workforce Census in one sitting, your answers will be saved, and you are able to re-enter and complete the National Workforce Census at a time that is more convenient.

If you have finished answering a question and need to stop, please ensure that you click ‘Save & Close’, this way your last response will be saved. Please do not simply close the browser as it will not save your responses.

Please note that you will need to enter a response for each question on the page before clicking ‘Save & Close’ to ensure all your responses will be saved.

What should I do if I am unsure about how to answer a question, or the question (including any terms used) does not make sense?

In the first instance, please refer to the explanatory notes that accompany some questions for definitions and clarifications.

If the question does not have an accompanying explanatory note, or if you are still unsure about how to answer the question, please contact the National Workforce Census Helpline on 1800 800 996 (free call) or email nwc@srcentre.com.au

What should I do if I need to update the contact details or change the nominated key contact person to complete the census?

Please contact the National Workforce Census Helpline on 1800 800 996 (free call from 9:00am to 5:00pm AEST, Monday to Friday) or email nwc@srcentre.com.au.

Privacy notice

A Privacy Notice for you and your staff explaining this data collection and how the Department will use and disclose the information provided. You will need this to prepare for the National Workforce Census.

 

Full list of census questions                                          

The key contact person needs to review the full list of questions to be asked in the Census, and determine how the information required will be sourced, and the time required to complete this information.

If you have any questions about the census or if support is required at any stage of the process, please contact the National Workforce Census Helpline on 1800 800 996 (free call from 9:00am to 5:00pm AEST, Monday to Friday) or email nwc@srcentre.com.au.