New BESA Research Programme – Compass Report

We are delighted to be sharing our new Compass Research Report.Ā As 2023 sees the implementation of our enhanced research programme, we have already rolled out updates to our quarterly Barometer providing snapshot market performance reports for members. On Monday 19 June, BESA hosted a webinar to launch the first of our new Compass reports, a brand-new regular research report providing half termly insights into school budgets, the challenges being faced by school leaders right now and their priorities for the future.


The new reports, delivered in partnership with The Education Company, will provide members with industry leading research to cut through the noise and get actionable insights.


The key objectives for Compass are to:

  1. Identify budget direction of travel and relative position
  2. Clarify spending intentions
  3. Highlight school challenges
  4. Bring members closer to senior leaders and business managers in schools


Announcing the launch of the new program our Deputy Director General, Julia Garvey, said:Ā “We understand that members are looking for research that explains their customer behaviour, gives them greater understanding of the pressures on the market and helps shapes their business planning. But we also know that our members care deeply about the challenges that schools face and want to know how best they provide support. The Compass report has been designed to meet all these requirements.”


In addition to the regular Compass report, we are excited to announce a brand-new element to our research offering, a real-time data dashboard available via an online data portal. The dashboards, created especially for BESA, will enable members to drill down into the data, segmenting the answers by a wide range of demographics such as school type, geographic region, and key stage as well as variables such as % SEND or pupil premium students, academic attainment and MAT status. Data within the dashboard will be continuously updated whist the static report will be drawn at half-termly intervals.


“The data portal and dashboards are a game changer,” Julia Garvey said. “They put the full power of the research at each memberā€™s fingertips giving them a powerful tool to help shape their sales, marketing and product development strategies.”


The launch event also included a focus group with business managers from a range of schools, who provided commentary and perspective on the findings of the report, relating the statistics back to their own experiences and offering greater insight on the financial pressures they currently face and their relationships with suppliers. BESA will be running regular focus groups as part of the research programme going forward.


The Compass report is available to download now from the BESA website.Ā 

A recording of the launch event and school business manager focus group is available to view here.

The data portal and digital dashboard will be launched at our Summer Business Insight Day on 6 July (tickets available here) and will be rolled out to members thereafter.


BESA research is for BESA members and Launchpad companies only and is not to be shared externally or quoted publicly without prior approval.