The Community-Business Partnerships report outlines a number of themes which emerged through the research, with a strong emphasis on relationship-building and maintenance.
The aim of the project was to identify opportunities and barriers to community-business engagement in the Parramatta region. Following on from this, the report also provides suggestions about how engagement can be grown into the future.
A cross-sector Advisory Group was established with representatives from businesses, Parramatta Business Chamber, Parramatta City Council, social enterprises and community organisations to guide and advise the project in mid 2013. The Advisory Group also provided contacts, particularly in the business community.
The Group provided feedback on the survey instruments (on-line survey and interview questions). A survey was sent to the business community via Parramatta Business Chamber in late 2013 but there were no responses. The feedback was that businesses get inundated with surveys regularly and unless they see an immediate benefit to their business are unlikely to respond.
In total, 16 one-on-one interviews (face-to-face and phone) were undertaken with businesses from May to August 2014. The table below outlines the characteristics of these businesses. In addition, information was gathered to supplement this research process through business networking events and informal meetings with contacts made during the course of the project.
Information from Community Service Organisations (CSOs) was gathered through an on-line survey (late 2013), focus group and face-to-face interviews (May to July 2014), as outlined in the table below. In addition information was gathered to supplement this research process through attendance at the Managing to Change: A Conversation Series for the Community Sector in Parramatta organised by Parramatta City Council from June to July 2014.