Statistical protocols and compliance

'National Statistics' is a quality marker applied to certain outputs of the United Kingdom's official statistics. Statistics labelled as 'National Statistics' must meet certain criteria. They should be fit for purpose, methodologically sound, politically independent and transparently produced.

National statistics 

All National Statistics are produced in accordance with the 'UK Statistics Authority's Code of Practice for Official Statistics' and comply with the principles embodied in the 'National Code of Practice for Official Statistics'. They are reviewed every five years for quality.

NISRA privacy notice

Important links


To view the Department of Finance's Statement of Compliance in relation to the 'Pre-release Access to Official Statistics Order (Northern Ireland) 2009', please click on the link below:

Pre-release access has not been granted to Economic and Labour Market Statistics Publications since July 2017.


Information on exceptions to standard pre-release access procedures are available through the link below:

Survey compliance costs

The UK Code of Practice for Official Statistics requires all producers of National and Official statistics to report annually the estimated costs of responding to statistical surveys and to develop ways of reducing costs to individual organisations or people.

From 1 April 2011, the responsibility for the collection of data and production of official statistics on the labour market and economy transferred from DETI to NISRA, an agency of the Department of Finance (DoF). The latest NISRA report on compliance costs for the Northern Ireland Departments is available at:

If required, more detailed compliance cost breakdowns can be obtained by contacting the Economic and Labour Market Statistics Branch on 028 9052 9403.

DoF statistics revisions policy

Statement of administrative sources

The following document lists the administrative systems currently utilised by DoF in the production of official statistics:

Social media - Twitter account

Economic and Labour Market Statistics branch has had a Twitter account since June 2014. Below is a short Twitter policy for user information:

Data security

DoF confidentiality statement

In accordance with Code of Practice for Official Statistics the statement below sets out the arrangements DoF has put in place to protect the security of its data holdings and to ensure the confidentiality guarantees provided by the Department.

Breach of the code of practice for official statistics

In January 2014, three individuals who were not on the pre-release access list for NI labour market figures received one unpublished figure the day before publication, as a result of a forwarded email.

In June 2011, internet tables containing Northern Ireland Claimant Count and Redundancy data were accidentally released early to the public. Details of this breach in release practices can be viewed via the link below:

User consultation and information

ELMS welcome feedback from users on all aspects of our statistics in order to develop and improve our products and ensure user requirements are met.

ELMS statistical user group meetings

In order to ensure that the statistics produced by DoF meet the needs of data users and, where possible, to identify any gaps in data provision, DoF statisticians meet periodically with customers and data users.  Details of the most recent meetings can be found below: