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Digital Assessment Used to Help Organisations with their Environmental Compliance
Setting the Scene
NetRegs is a partnership between the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA) and the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA). It has been set up to give guidance to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) on their environmental responsibilities, with the aim of helping businesses to reduce their environmental impact. NetRegs provides the most up-to-date information on environmental legislation and regulations to businesses across Scotland and Northern Ireland.
In 2014, eCom was commissioned by NetRegs to develop a diagnostic assessment to run via their website. The digital self-assessment tool was for small and medium sized enterprises to check their compliance with environmental legislation. The requirement was for a conditional branching assessment which would route responders on different paths based on their answers.
Assessment summary reports with links to additional resources were required, which businesses could use to demonstrate their environmental awareness or start an improvement programme. Completion of the assessment had to be anonymous so businesses were able to complete the assessment honestly. SEPA and NIEA wished to move away from the perception of their organisations as regulatory enforcers and reposition as a partner, working with businesses to help them become compliant.
eCom worked with the subject matter experts from NetRegs to establish the routes through the survey, develop the question flow, and structure the information correctly. The assessment was built using eCom’s eNetAssess™ tool. A considerable data input and testing effort was required to ensure the adaptive questioning presented the right information. The free self-assessment tool was launched on the NetRegs website in 2015. It has six sections covering a range of topics including hazardous substances, packaging, waste and water. Each section takes no more than 10-15 minutes to complete. The assessment is anonymous but participants can stop at any time and return to a partially completed assessment by entering a unique pin code. On completion of each section participants receive a report highlighting areas that need improvement, with a link to the relevant NetRegs guidance.
The online assessment has delivered a useful tool for businesses to check their environmental performance. It has expanded the resources available on the NetRegs website, positively impacting visitor numbers. By establishing the assessment as an anonymous activity NetRegs has reinforced the image of their website as a safe place to go for information.
Developing the digital assessment tool using adaptive assessment enables businesses to pinpoint the areas where they need to do more and allows NetRegs to provide the most relevant guidance.
The public sector eAssessment system currently provides the NetRegs team with data and reporting on usage. It is planned to develop the reporting so NetRegs can get an in depth understanding of the areas where businesses need most guidance. This will help NetRegs to further develop and improve their online resources. Since launch 3,442 individual assessments have been completed.
What our clients have to say
eCom’s understanding of what we wanted to achieve was key to successfully taking the online learning and self-assessment online
Alan Parnell, NetRegs