Annual Survey of Service Industries: Translation and Interpretation Services

Detailed information for 2000





Record number:


The survey collects financial and operating data needed to produce statistics for the Canadian translation and interpretation services industry.

Data release - 2000 data were not released


The survey objective is the collection and publication of data necessary for the statistical analysis of the translation and interpretation services industry.

The information from the survey can be used by businesses for market analysis, by trade associations to study performance and other characteristics of their industry, by government to develop national and regional economic policies, and by other users involved in research or policy making.

Statistical activity

The survey is administered as part of the Unified Enterprise Survey program (UES). The UES program has been designed to integrate, gradually over time, the approximately 200 separate business surveys into a single master survey program. The UES aims at collecting more industry and product detail at the provincial level than was previously possible while avoiding overlap between different survey questionnaires. The redesigned business survey questionnaires have a consistent look, structure and content. The unified approach makes reporting easier for firms operating in different industries because they can provide similar information for each branch operation. This way they avoid having to respond to questionnaires that differ for each industry in terms of format, wording and even concepts.

This survey is part of the Service Industries Program. The survey data gathered are used to compile aggregate statistics for over thirty service industry groupings. Financial data, including revenue, expense and profit statistics are available for all of the surveys in the program. In addition, many compile and disseminate industry-specific information.

Reference period: Calendar year


  • Business, consumer and property services
  • Business performance and ownership
  • Financial statements and performance
  • Professional, scientific and technical services

Data sources and methodology

Target population

The target population for this survey is all establishments classified to NAICS 54193 on Statistics Canada's Business Register and operating for at least one day during the reference year and those self-employed unincorporated individuals who are not on Statistic Canada's Business Register. This industry is comprised of establishments primarily engaged in translating written material and interpreting speech from one language to another, and includes establishments engaged in offering sign language services.


This is a sample survey.

Two sources of data were used to derive the estimates:
- a probability sample survey of accounting enterprises with a gross business revenue greater than or equal to a cut-off that varied by province from $30,000 to $70,000

- taxation data to estimate for businesses with gross business revenue found on the Business Register less than a small size cut-off that varied by province from $30,000 to $70,000

The frame for the selection of the probability sample is Statistics Canada's Business Register. For 1999, in this frame about 1,300 establishments were classified to translation and interpretation services.

A probability sample with network sampling was employed. Sampling units were created using a cell concept, which combined province and a 5-digit NAICS aggregation. Sampling units were stratified in four size strata that were defined by the total revenue of the sampling unit. For the size stratification, there is one take-all stratum for the large sampling units, two take-some strata for the medium-sized units and one take-none stratum for the smaller-sized units. The sample selected targeted 145 respondents covering 976 establishments.

Data sources

Responding to this survey is mandatory.

Data are collected directly from survey respondents and extracted from administrative files.

All the establishments included in the sample were sent a mail out / mail back questionnaire. Electronic reporting was also possible. The survey was supported by Computer Assisted Telephone Interview (CATI).

View the Questionnaire(s) and reporting guide(s) .

Error detection

The data were examined for inconsistencies and errors using automated edits coupled with analytical review. Every effort was made to minimize the non-sampling error of omission, duplication, reporting and processing.


Partial records were imputed to make them complete, and were added to a donor pool along with completed records. Data for non-respondents, unable to locate and no-contacts were imputed using nearest neighbour donor imputation. Tax data were used in order to identify nearest neighbour donors.


The sampling weights derived from the sample design were modified and improved using post stratification. Estimates were derived using the final weight calculated by the sample design weight multiplied by the adjustment weight. The adjusted weight is a function of the information used at the design stage, the information received from the respondent, and new information on the frame. This is possible because the Business Register was updated with more accurate information in the time between the sample is selected and the estimates are produced. The final set of weights reflects as closely as possible the changing characteristics of the population in this industry.

Disclosure control

Statistics Canada is prohibited by law from releasing any information it collects that could identify any person, business, or organization, unless consent has been given by the respondent or as permitted by the Statistics Act. Various confidentiality rules are applied to all data that are released or published to prevent the publication or disclosure of any information deemed confidential. If necessary, data are suppressed to prevent direct or residual disclosure of identifiable data.

In order to prevent any data disclosure, confidentiality analysis is done using the Statistics Canada Generalized Disclosure Control System (G-Confid). G-Confid is used for primary suppression (direct disclosure) as well as for secondary suppression (residual disclosure). Direct disclosure occurs when the value in a tabulation cell is composed of or dominated by few enterprises while residual disclosure occurs when confidential information can be derived indirectly by piecing together information from different sources or data series.

Data accuracy

All surveys are subject to sampling and non-sampling errors. Statistics Canada uses a variety of methods to minimize all types of errors. Measures of sampling error along with other indicators of quality are provided.

The coefficients of variation, a measure of sampling error, were computed. The quality of the estimates are classified as: Excellent (CV is 0.01 to 4.99%); Very good (CV is 5.00% to 9.99%); Good (CV is 10.00% to 14.99%); Acceptable (CV is 15.00% to 24.99%); Use with caution (CV is 25.00% to 34.99%); and Unreliable (> 35.00%).

Using these ratings, for total revenue, salaries and wages and total expenses, at the Canada aggregate industry level, the CV's were judged to be very good. At the provincial level the CVs ranged from excellent to acceptable. New Brunswick was excellent, Québec was very good, Ontario was good and BC was acceptable. The remaining provinces were suppressed for confidentiality

The response rates of the 145 sampled units receiving a questionnaire were: Completed: 80%; Other (Inactive, Out of Business, Change of Ownership, Amalgamation, Incorrect Classification): 14%; These response rates are considered normal for a business survey. Of the 14% Other classification, 11% were considered out-of-scope which reflects the quality of the Business Register at the time of sampling.

The sample of translation and interpretation services represented 96% of the estimated industry revenues. Small businesses that were not included in the sample and where tax data were used to provide an estimate represented the remainder of the industry revenues.

All of the data were reviewed for accuracy and consistency. Users should bear in mind, however, that this is the second year of the survey and it is not feasible to make close comparisons to the earlier estimates.

Date modified: