You are here

TGA stakeholder survey 2018

20 December 2018

Book pagination

TGA information website

Website use

In 2018 a total of 91% of respondents highlight at least some use of the TGA website. This outcome is consistent with both the 2017 and 2016 surveys, with overall use and the pattern of frequency of use the same across the last three years (Table 29 and Figure 44). These patterns see around one in three participants using the site less than once a month and around one in four using it once a week or more often. The range of usage patterns reinforces the varying levels of familiarity and needs that users will have with the site. In this context, ensuring the logic, navigation and user friendliness of the site are maximised for a range of users and user groups should remain a priority.

Table 29: TGA website - Frequency of use (%)

How often do you visit the TGA information website?
Frequency 2018 2017 2016
Never 9 8 8
Less than once a month 34 36 35
About once a month 18 17 19
Two or three times a month 13 11 10
About once a week 9 8 9
More than once a week 17 18 18
N 2021 2194 2424

Note: Not sure option removed for 2018. 2016 and 2017 both recorded 2% in this category.

Figure 44: TGA website - Frequency of use (%)
Pie chart of Table 29 2018 data

N=2,021

Overall use (ever used) is high across all stakeholder groupings in the survey, at more than 80% for all groups. Leading user groups are Medical products industry (93%) and Government (92%). Those most familiar with the site (reflected by regular weekly or more often use of the site) are Medical products industry (31%) and Government (32%) groupings with other major groupings all showing regular use at less than one in ten participants (Table 30). Regulatory affairs consultants represent the most regular visitors to the site, with 59% of this grouping reporting regular visits. Within the Medical products industry, Product sponsors (34%) and Industry association representatives (33%) also showed high levels of site visitation. Product manufacturers were also fairly regular visitors (17%).

Within the Medical products industry, the most frequent use is also associated with the size of the organisation (as indicated by the number of employees; Figure 45). As was observed in 2017, website use generally increases with organisational size. The exception here is organisations with 200-599 employees, who recorded the highest level of frequent use in the current survey (54%). Although the pattern is similar to 2017, it is notable that it is not as marked as 2017, where the largest employers recorded frequent use of almost 70% (Figure 46).

Table 30: TGA website -Frequent use by Stakeholder, Industry, and Health professionals (%)

How often do you visit the TGA information website?
Stakeholder category Weekly or more often Any use
Medical products industry 31 93
Health professional 9 82
Retailer 5 84
Government 32 92
Academic 8 83
Media 50 100
Other 18 89
Medical products industry
Product sponsor 34 94
Product manufacturer 17 89
Reg affairs consultant 59 99
Ind assoc'n rep 33 89
Other 22 90
Health professional
Pharmacist 27 96
Medical practitioner 0 74
Nurse 0 81
Compl healthcare prac 16 86
Dental practitioner 0 75
Other 5 80

Stakeholder cat: Med prod ind: N=1,388; Health pro: N=187; Retailer: N=61; Gov: N=53; Academic: N=63; Media: N=2; Other: N=262. Med prod Ind: Sponsor: N=858; Manufacturer: N=370; Reg Affairs: N=96; Ind Assoc Rep: N=9; Other: N=51. Health pro: Pharmacist: N=26; Med prac: N=38; Nurse: N=21; Comp health: N=37; Dental: N=8; Other: N=56.

Regular use is generally low for Health professionals (9%), although within this grouping regular users were almost entirely comprised of Pharmacists (27% regular use) and Complementary healthcare practitioners (16%).

Figure 45: TGA information website - Frequent use (Weekly or more) by employee numbers (Medical products industry) - 2018 (%)
Line chart - see Figure 45 in tabular format

1-19: N=544; 20-199: N=392; 200-599: N=202; 600-999: N=47; 1000-1499: N=21; 1500+: N=18

Figure 45: TGA information website - Frequent use (Weekly or more) by employee numbers (Medical products industry) - 2018 (%)
Frequency of use Weekly or more often
1-19 11
20-199 38
200-599 54
600-999 43
1000-1499 48
1500+ 50

1-19: N=544; 20-199: N=392; 200-599: N=202; 600-999: N=47; 1000-1499: N=21; 1500+: N=18

Figure 46: TGA information website - Frequent use (Weekly or more) by employee numbers (Medical products industry) - 2017 (%)
Line chart - see Figure 46 in tabular format

1-19: N=499; 20-99: N=288; 100-199: N=94; 200-599: N=176; 600-999: N=40; 1000-1499: N=16; 1500+: N=21.

Figure 46: TGA information website - Frequent use (Weekly or more) by employee numbers (Medical products industry) - 2017 (%)
Frequency of use Weekly or more often
1-19 13
20-99 32
100-199 41
200-599 48
600-999 58
1000-1499 69
1500+ 67

1-19: N=499; 20-99: N=288; 100-199: N=94; 200-599: N=176; 600-999: N=40; 1000-1499: N=16; 1500+: N=21.

The patterns here highlight the potential to segment various groups using frequency of site usage as a key variable. Particular opportunities exist to identify and respond to the core business needs of regular users within the Medical products industry whilst also providing clearly identified paths for less regular users (such as Health professionals) who are likely to be seeking specific information or advice from the site.

Participants highlight a range of reasons for use of the website (Figure 47). The most common reasons include to Access databases, Seek guidance documents, and Seek fees and charges information. This pattern is similar to 2017, although there is a slight shift in the most common reason highlighted for visiting the site, with Access to databases moving from the second most common reason, displacing Guidance documents as the most common reason for visiting.

In addition to the reasons pre-coded in the survey, participants highlight a range of other reasons for visiting the website. It is notable that some of the reasons specified are likely to relate to services accessed through the eBusiness portal. Reasons outlined include accessing, seeking or providing information about:

  • Guidelines.
  • Legislative changes.
  • ACE.
  • Fees.
  • New products.
  • Advertising.
  • Clinical trials.
  • Administration.
  • Applications.
  • School/University assignment.
  • Medicines shortages.
  • Advice general.
  • Registrations.
  • TGA reforms.
  • Adverse event notifications and information.
  • Goods manufacturing practice.
  • Medical devices.
  • Medicines shortages.
  • Medicines and complementary medicines
  • Inspections.
  • Labelling requirements.
  • Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee.
  • Privacy information.
  • Special access scheme.
  • ATRG search.
  • Advertising complaints.
  • Complaints - other.
Figure 47: TGA website - Reasons for visiting (N)
Bar chart - see Figure 47 in tabular format
Figure 47: TGA website - Reasons for visiting (N)
Reason N
Accessing TGA databases such as the ARTG 1315
Guidance documents 1207
Fees and charges info 994
Regulatory decisions and notices 715
General info about the TGA 691
Info on TGA training, workshops or presentations 538
Importing or exporting products info 536
Accessing info about scheduling of meds and poisons 522
Accessing info on Medicines and Med Devices Reforms (MMDR) 520
Education materials 513
Info on consultations 394
Safety information 380
News and publications including performance reporting 308
Accessing info for health pros 299
Product recalls 278
Report problems or adverse events 245
Accessing targeted info for small and medium enterprises 189
Provide feedback to the TGA 147
Other 79

Overall the pattern of identified reasons is highly consistent with results over the previous two years of the survey. These patterns reinforce the broad range of uses and information requirements of visitors to the site amongst the key stakeholder audiences targeted by this survey. Ongoing monitoring and targeted user feedback channels for users of the site will allow further development and identification of information gaps, navigation issues and potential opportunities to optimise the usability of the website design.

Use of website tools

Amongst a list of tools presented, 84% of website visitors highlight using one or more tools (Table 31). The most commonly used tool is the Search function, which has been used by almost 9 in 10 users of the TGA website. Downloadable fact sheets are also very commonly accessed tools across the range of visitors to the site (65%). Interactive tools (24%) and videos (12%) are used by fewer yet still substantial numbers of users.

Table 31: TGA website - Use of website tools

Which of the following additional tools on the TGA website have you used?
Tools N %
Interactive tools such as decision trees 373 24.1
Downloadable fact sheets 998 64.6
Videos 191 12.4
Search function 1373 88.8
None of the above 243 15.7
Total answering 1546

Base: Visit the TGA website

Table 32: TGA website - Number of website tools selections N)
Number of selections (excluding None) N
1 560
2 663
3 243
4 80

The pattern of use of the various tools is generally consistent across stakeholder groups, with the search function representing the most commonly used tool across all groups, followed by downloadable fact sheets (Table 33).

Table 33: TGA website -use of website tools by stakeholder group (N)

Which of the following additional tools on the TGA website have you used?
Use of tools Interactive tools Downloadable fact sheets Videos Search function None of the above
Total 373 998 191 1373 243
Medical products ind 292 689 134 987 152
Health professional 14 84 15 93 33
Retailer 12 30 3 35 9
Government 9 24 7 35 8
Academic 8 34 7 40 6
Media 1 2 1 2 0
Other 36 132 23 177 35

When asked to rate the usefulness of the various tools, Fact sheets (49% Very useful), Videos (47%) and Interactive tools (46%) all showed strong levels of Very useful ratings coupled with very low levels of Not at all useful ratings (between 1% and 3%; Figure 48). Search function ratings are less favourable, although the strong majority of users feel the search function is either Somewhat useful (55%) or Very useful (37%).

Figure 48: TGA website - Website tools - Usefulness (%)
Bar chart - see Figure 48 in tabular format

Interactive tools: N=371; Fact sheets: N=981; Videos: N=188; Search: N=1,329

Figure 48: TGA website - Website tools - Usefulness (%)
Feature Not at all useful Somewhat useful Very useful
Interactive tools 3 52 46
Fact sheets 1 50 49
Videos 3 50 47
Search function 8 55 37

Interactive tools: N=371; Fact sheets: N=981; Videos: N=188; Search: N=1,329

The usefulness of the various tools as rated across the range of stakeholder groups in the survey is shown in Tables 34-37. Patterns here highlight that for the Interactive tools, Fact sheet, and Video categories there is a higher level of usefulness identified amongst Medical products industry, Retailer and Academic participants and lower outcomes amongst Health professionals. This pattern is not replicated in relation to the Search function tool, where perceived usefulness is similar for all stakeholder groups.

Table 34: TGA website - Interactive tools - Usefulness (%) by stakeholder group

How useful did you find: Interactive tools (e.g. Decision trees)
Stakeholder group Not at all useful Somewhat useful Very useful N
Total 2.7 51.8 45.6 371
Medical products industry 2.8 50.3 46.9 290
Health professional 0.0 64.3 35.7 14
Retailer 8.3 41.7 50.0 12
Government 0.0 66.7 33.3 9
Academic 12.5 37.5 50.0 8
Media 0.0 0.0 100.0 1
Other, please specify 0.0 61.1 38.9 36
No answer 0.0 100.0 0.0 1

Table 35: TGA website - Fact sheets - Usefulness (%) by stakeholder group

How useful did you find: Fact sheets
Stakeholder group Not at all useful Somewhat useful Very useful N
Total 0.7 50.4 48.9 981
Medical products industry 0.7 49.9 49.4 676
Health professional 1.2 59.0 39.8 83
Retailer 0.0 41.4 58.6 29
Government 0.0 70.8 29.2 24
Academic 0.0 55.9 44.1 34
Media 0.0 0.0 100.0 2
Other, please specify 0.8 45.4 53.8 130
No answer 0.0 33.3 66.7 3

Table 36: TGA website - Videos - Usefulness (%) by stakeholder group

How useful did you find: Videos
Stakeholder group Not at all useful Somewhat useful Very useful N
Total 2.7 50.0 47.3 188
Medical products industry 2.3 48.1 49.6 131
Health professional 6.7 66.7 26.7 15
Retailer 0.0 33.3 66.7 3
Government 0.0 85.7 14.3 7
Academic 14.3 28.6 57.1 7
Media 0.0 0.0 100.0 1
Other, please specify 0.0 47.8 52.2 23
No answer 0.0 100.0 0.0 1

Table 37: TGA website - Search function - Usefulness (%) by stakeholder group

How useful did you find: Search function
Stakeholder group Not at all useful Somewhat useful Very useful N
Total 8.1 55.4 36.6 1329
Medical products industry 8.9 53.7 37.4 954
Health professional 4.5 62.9 32.6 89
Retailer 11.8 61.8 26.5 34
Government 2.9 67.6 29.4 34
Academic 7.5 57.5 35.0 40
Media 0.0 0.0 100.0 2
Other, please specify 5.8 57.2 37.0 173
No answer 0.0 66.7 33.3 3

Website satisfaction

Satisfaction with the four characteristics of the website tested shows marked variation (Figure 49). The Length of content and Language used is positively viewed, with 77% and 81% Nett satisfaction respectively and a minimal 4% Nett dissatisfaction. The Look and feel of the site is also generally positively received, with 65% Nett satisfaction strongly outweighing the minimal 5% Nett dissatisfaction. Site navigation is less positively viewed with only 55% Nett satisfaction and substantial levels of dissatisfaction (18%) pointing toward the clearest opportunity to improve user experience of the site.

Figure 49: TGA website - Satisfaction (%)
Bar chart - see Figure 49 in tabular format

N=1806-1813

Figure 49: TGA website - Satisfaction (%)
Characteristic Nett dissatisfied Neither Nett satisfied
Language used 4 15 81
Length of content 4 19 77
Navigating the site 18 27 55
Look and feel 5 30 65

N=1806-1813

Nett satisfaction with the various features of the site across stakeholder groups is varied (Figure 50). Retailers and Government stakeholders appear less likely to express satisfaction with the Language and Length of content, while Medical products industry and Other participants show strong levels of satisfaction across these measures. Government and Academic users appear less favourable with regards to Navigating the site, while the look and feel of the site is generally viewed similarly across the various stakeholders in the survey. There does not appear to be a strong association here with overall use of the site, with the two most frequent user groups (Medical products industry and Government) showing diverse outcomes across measures.

Figure 50: TGA website - Nett satisfaction by Stakeholders (%)
Line chart - see Figure 50 in tabular format

Med prod ind: N=1,273; Health pro: N=151; Retailer: N=51; Gov: N=49; Academic: N=52; Media: N=2; Other: N=231.

Figure 50: TGA website - Nett satisfaction by Stakeholders (%)
Stakeholder group Language used Length of content Navigating the site Look and feel
Medical products industry 83 78 55 66
Health professional 75 74 57 61
Retailer 69 60 56 65
Government 73 67 46 60
Academic 77 76 48 63
Other 84 80 60 65

Med prod ind: N=1,273; Health pro: N=151; Retailer: N=51; Gov: N=49; Academic: N=52; Media: N=2; Other: N=231.

In the context of generally high ratings by the Medical products industry, high satisfaction with the language and Length of content is most commonly observed amongst Regulatory affairs consultants and Industry association representatives (Figure 51). Product manufacturers show the lowest level of satisfaction across these measures. Navigation of the site shows less variation, with the exception of Industry association representatives, who rate both areas relatively favourably.

Figure 51: TGA website - Nett satisfaction Medical products industry (%)
Line chart - see Figure 51 in tabular format

Sponsor: N=796-797; Manufacturer: N=322-324; Reg Aff consult: N=95; Ind assoc'n rep: N=8; Other N=45-46.

Figure 51: TGA website - Nett satisfaction Medical products industry (%)
Stakeholder group Language used Length of content Navigating the site Look and feel
Product sponsor 83 78 55 66
Product manufacturer 80 75 56 64
Reg affairs consultant 91 85 52 64
Ind assoc'n rep 88 100 75 100
Other 83 80 52 70

Sponsor: N=796-797; Manufacturer: N=322-324; Reg Aff consult: N=95; Ind assoc'n rep: N=8; Other N=45-46.

There is marked variation across measures of satisfaction with the website amongst Health professional groupings (Figure 52). The Language used and Length of content show strong Nett satisfaction among Pharmacists. Nurses show generally low levels of satisfaction across Length of content, Navigation and Look and feel measures. Medical practitioners and Complementary healthcare practitioners appear more likely to show satisfaction with the site navigation, with Complementary health practitioners also favouring the look and feel of the site more commonly than other groups here.

Figure 52: TGA website - Nett satisfaction - Health professionals (%)
Line chart - see Figure 52 in tabular format

Pharmacist: N=25; Med prac: N=28; Nurse: N=15-16; Comp health: N=31; Dental: N=6; Other: N=43-44.

Figure 52: TGA website - Nett satisfaction - Health professionals (%)
Stakeholder group Language used Length of content Navigating the site Look and feel
Pharmacist 92 92 52 60
Medical practitioner 75 75 68 57
Nurse 69 47 38 47
Compl healthcare practitioner 68 74 65 71
Other 73 72 52 59

Pharmacist: N=25; Med prac: N=28; Nurse: N=15-16; Comp health: N=31; Dental: N=6; Other: N=43-44.

Overall satisfaction with the website is strong, showing a high level of Nett satisfaction (73%) coupled with low levels of Nett dissatisfaction (6%; Figure 53). This outcome is consistent with the survey findings in 2017 and maintains the slight improvement observed since 2016 (Table 38).

Figure 53: TGA website - Satisfaction (%)
Bar chart - Overall satisfaction: 6% Nett dissatisfied, 21% Neither, 73% Nett satisfied

N=1,805

Table 38: TGA website - Overall satisfaction - 2016 - 2018 (%)

Overall, how satisfied are you with the TGA information website?
Year Nett dissatisfied Neither Nett satisfied
2016 7 24 69
2017 6 23 72
2018 6 21 73

2018: N= 1,805; 2017: N=1,953; 2016: N=2,165.

Nett satisfaction with the website varied from 74% amongst those in the Medical products industry and 73% amongst Academics down to 62% and 63% for Health professionals and Retailers respectively (Table 39). Dissatisfaction is consistently low amongst most groups, with the exception here being Retailers, with almost one in five expressing dissatisfaction with the site.

Table 39: TGA website - Overall satisfaction by stakeholder category, Industry and Health professionals (%)

Overall, how satisfied are you with the TGA information website?
Category Nett dissatisfied Neither Nett satisfied N
Medical products industry 6 20 74 1270
Health professional 7 31 62 148
Retailer 18 18 63 49
Government 6 27 67 49
Academic 8 19 73 52
Media 0 0 100 2
Other 8 18 74 231
Medical products industry
Product sponsor 6 20 74 768
Product manufacturer 5 24 72 279
Regulatory affairs consultant 6 13 81 92
Industry association representative 0 12 88 8
Other 2 20 78 40
Health professional
Pharmacist 0 16 84 25
Medical practitioner 7 30 63 27
Nurse 13 47 40 15
Complementary healthcare practitioner 0 42 58 31
Dental practitioner 33 0 67 6
Other health professional 9 33 58 43

The high level of satisfaction among Medical products industry participants is driven by good satisfaction levels across all groups in this category. In particular, Regulatory affairs consultants (81%) and the small number of Industry association representatives (88%) show strong satisfaction with the website, while Product sponsors (74%) and Product manufacturers (72%) have satisfaction levels around the average for this group.

Among health professionals there is wider disparity in ratings of the website, although care should be taken in interpretation of these outcomes due to the small number of responses involved. Strong levels of satisfaction amongst Pharmacists (84%) are in contrast to lower levels of satisfaction for Medical practitioners (63%), Complementary healthcare practitioners (58%), Nurses (40%) and Other health professionals (58%).

As observed in the 2017 survey, familiarity gauged through the frequency of use of the site appears strongly related to the satisfaction ratings provided (Figure 54). In particular, those who use the site least (Less than once a month) show lower Nett satisfaction levels across the range of satisfaction measures captured. Those who use the site about once a week consistency show the highest levels of satisfaction and the most frequent users similarly show strong satisfaction across most measures (with the exception of the Navigation experience).

Figure 54: TGA website - Satisfaction measures by frequency of use (%)
Line chart - see Figure 54 in tabular format

More than once a week: N=335-337; About once a week: N=181-183; 2-3 times a week: N=251-249; About once a month: N=360-364; Less than once a month: N=676-681.

Figure 54: TGA website - Satisfaction measures by frequency of use (%)
Frequency of use Language used Length of content Navigating the site Look and feel Overall satisfaction
More than once a week 90 85 54 73 80
About once a week 93 88 62 78 84
Two or three times a month 84 79 59 63 75
About once a month 80 77 58 63 74
Less than once a month 74 70 52 59 65

More than once a week: N=335-337; About once a week: N=181-183; 2-3 times a week: N=251-249; About once a month: N=360-364; Less than once a month: N=676-681.

Feedback on the TGA website included an opportunity to provide comments outlining the reasons for the overall rating of the site. More than 600 comments and suggestions were received in relation to this opportunity in the survey. Consistent with previous years, the overwhelming majority of comments relate to ease of navigation and simplicity of use of the website. These comments commonly relate to specific aspects of navigating the site, the logical structure of information, the ability to find and search for relevant information as well as the simplicity and ease of understanding of information provided. Ensuring that the site provides an intuitive and simple experience emerges as a key theme, with increasing expectations and comparisons to app based simplicity experienced across a range of consumer areas in everyday life setting the standard of expectations.

Book pagination