Member Survey Results Update 2021
The results of the confederation’s 2021 annual member survey have been reviewed and once again our members have provided an in-depth insight into the top issues facing the sector and the challenges that lie ahead.
We have a proud history of representing and protecting our members’ interests and we value the feedback provided in the survey on our work and events. It helps us shape the support we provide.
The survey had a 41% response rate, with the following sub-sectors represented:
- Bricks, Clay Roof Tiles and Clay Drainage Pipes (35%)
- Industrial Ceramics and Refractories (29%)
- Tableware and Giftware (17%)
- Suppliers (17%)
Membership satisfaction remained strong with 90% of respondents rating their BCC membership as essential / important, up 3% on 2020 (87%), with 34% rating membership as essential (38% in 2020) and 56% rating it important (49% in 2020).
Members’ comments were extremely positive, with one respondent noting that the BCC provides first rate support that is relevant and prompt. Legislative information and industry specific updates were highly valued, as were the opportunities for collective lobbying. Membership was also seen as a means of keeping connected with the wider sector.
One respondent, who said membership was essential, noted it was because the BCC team ‘understand the long-term risks and the evolution of the regulatory landscape, check alignment with the rest of the industry, discover ideas and opportunities.’
The top five areas of work rated the most important for the confederation reflect the current challenges facing the industry. They were:
- Energy: campaigning on energy security and costs
- Climate Change Levy / Agreements Support
- Health and Safety improvement, awareness, and compliance
- Net zero compliance
- Net zero technology development and funding
Respondents also noted the following areas as being of importance to their businesses; environmental compliance, greenhouse gas emissions, compliance, and innovation, promoting and securing Government funding, Brexit, navigating issues like trade, anti-dumping, tariffs, customs and rules of origin, competitive pricing, and being able to trade easily with all export markets, especially the EU. Skills development was also noted.
The results reflect a shift since 2020 when Health and Safety improvement, awareness and compliance was the top issue.
Members commented positively about our events, stating that these are well organised, helpful, and useful opportunities for networking and sharing good practice. Outside speakers were welcomed as they provide a different perspective and generate discussion.
This year, there were distinct calls for more in-person events, noting that they are good for networking. However, there were also calls for more virtual events, noting that they save time. Therefore, hybrid events may be needed in the future.
Alongside this, the confederation’s communication channels were highly rated, with members valuing the Issue Notes as they gave more detail if required and were more thorough in content.
BEIS/BCC Coronavirus, Brexit, Energy and Net Zero video conferences were also rated highly. One respondent said: ‘The BEIS calls have been fantastic and have allowed us to reach into the higher echelons of government. The profile which the industry has had during the recent energy spike has also been fantastic and is a real credit to the team.’
Members also highly valued the Quarterly Report and Fortnightly Newsletters as well as the Annual Report.
Energy and carbon costs were rated as the main productivity challenge, while a lack of skills and the need for technological advances were also areas of concern. Innovation, accessing capital and COVID-19 restrictions were also noted. Members also commented on haulage availability, supply chain pressure and inflation.
The results showed that 44% of respondents were ‘somewhat confident’ about their prospects for revenue growth in the coming 12 months, while 34% were ‘very confident’. However, 12% ‘preferred not to say’ while 6% were ‘not so confident’ and 3% were ‘extremely confident’. None of the respondents stated that they were ‘not at all confident’.
Percentage revenue growth forecasts provided by a handful of respondents varied from 3% to 20%.
We really value our members taking the time to provide this feedback. We also have a dedicated email address (email@example.com) that members can use to pass on their views and comments.