This market research was conducted on behalf of the National Association of Testing Authorities, Australia (NATA) to determine members' perceptions of the Association's performance and the Association’s performance and effectiveness of its communication process(NATA Corporate Plan, action plan 3.07.02). This is the first market survey to be conducted by the Association.
NATA is a not for profit company, formed in 1947, which operates Australia's laboratory accreditation system. The members of the Association are the representatives of the accredited laboratories. Accreditation is available to all laboratories, whether they are owned by private companies or government bodies. Membership currently totals over 1800 laboratories.
The research was conducted using qualitative techniques, primarily focus groups. Twelve focus group meetings were conducted with members from laboratories in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Gladstone. A sample of 120 representatives, drawn from 120 member laboratories, were selected to participate. The location, size and industry to give a representative cross-section of laboratory sample was selected laboratory types, groupings.
The report covers analysis of data and interpretation of trends. The analysis provides a summary of the findings from the focus groups and details the main issues that emerged.
Based on the survey results, action is required by NATA to:
• enhance its image;
• market and promote the Association;
• improve communication channels;
• make accreditation a valued commodity.
The findings also reveal that there are a number of needs and expectations which are currently perceived by members as being unmet by NATA.
Recommendations for utilising and acting on the results of the marketing research are provided.