asked the Secretary of State for Employment when he expects to make available the 1977 and 1978 census of employment information; whether investigation of the 1977 figures is complete, and if he will make a statement.
[pursuant to his reply, 14 February 1980]: The results of the 1977 census of employment are now available. The national results will be published in the Department of Employment Gazette at the end of February. Compilation of the 1978 results will begin shortly and it is hoped that they will be published by the end of this year. The serious delay in the results stems from problems encountered in the computerisation of the census operation. This was embarked upon in 1976 to achieve a rapid saving in staff but without allowing for adequate preparation and testing of the complex systems involved. Intensive efforts have been and are being made to overcome the problems.