Office for National Statistics


The Office for National Statistics (ONS) is responsible for conducting the decennial Census, and for producing a spectrum of regular economic, social and business statistics. ONS provides timely, accurate and impartial statistics to a huge range of external customers such as the Bank of England, HM Treasury and other key government departments, business, Eurostat and OECD, academics, and members of the public. ONS statistics are crucial for the management of the economy, for allocating resources, for the formulation of government policy and for informing public debate.

ONS is the executive office of the UK Statistics Authority, which was established as a non-ministerial government department in early 2008. ONS has offices based in Newport (South Wales), Titchfield (Hampshire) and London, with the majority of employees split between the Newport and Titchfield sites. The GORS presence at ONS was established in the summer of 2008, and has been growing steadily since.



ONS has GORS analysts working in Newport and Titchfield in multi-disciplinary teams across the office on a variety of projects. Examples of typical projects and OR techniques used by GORS members at ONS include:

  • Design and analysis of complex sample surveys
  • Optimising sample allocations and sample rotation patterns for business surveys
  • Applying Nearest Neighbour Donor Imputation to social surveys
  • Data matching techniques for the Census Coverage Survey
  • Investigating estimation techniques and outlier treatments
  • Soft OR techniques, such as oval mapping
  • Regression modelling (including linear, logistic and multi-level modelling)
  • Workflow through the data processing system for the Census
  • Time series analysis
  • Statistical disclosure control

What to expect

The GORS head of profession at ONS is based at the Newport site. With GORS members spread on two sites, communication is essential. Members keep in touch across sites via regular video conferences, in order to feedback on events, training and to discuss GORS matters. We are a friendly group and work in teams alongside economists, statisticians and social researchers. This variety of academic backgrounds makes ONS a vibrant place to work. Training and career development opportunities are provided, and are directed to the needs of individual staff. For more junior analysts, this includes the opportunity to rotate between teams on a timescale of approximately 18 - 24 months.