Looking for different ways members can get involved with Co-op

Recently we started looking at different ways in which our members can get involved with our Co-op and share their opinions. Some examples of what members have supported so far are:

To get involved, members simply go to Co-op Membership and find something they’d like to join in with. 

Screen shot of the local causes areas of our website
Co-op Membership 

Not everyone is confident with digital channels and there’s a perception that it’s only young people who will embrace things like this. It would be a shame if that was the case, because the invitation to participate is open and relevant to all our members.

To make sure that we’re including as many our of members as possible we’re keeping an eye on the sign-up data. Using this we’re learning what we can do better.

This data is handled anonymously, sensitively and securely. This is about us using data for the benefit of our members to help us to be an inclusive Co-op.

I had a look at some of the data and plotted the following histograms of the ages of Members who signed up for the opportunities listed at the start of this post:

An image showing co-op Member ages and sign up's to our Join In initiative

To me, this data tells us we’re attracting members from a wide range of ages. The different opportunities themselves are appealing to different ages too. There’s a lot more to be said about this data but I’ll leave it there for now and welcome readers to comment.

Alex Waters
Data Science

 

Local causes and location

Charlotte King recently talked about the changes that we’ve made to make it easier for our members to select a local cause to support with their 1%. I’ve been looking at those local causes, what type they are and where they are in the United Kingdom.

Image showing the spread of local causes being helped by Co-op Members

This image is a scatter plot of those local causes that our Co-op Members are supporting when they buy products and services from us. 

This shows the relationship between the people who live in the UK and the Co-op. The Co-op is supporting local causes right across the nation so where there’s a community, there’s likely to be a good cause that our members are supporting.

What do the colours represent?

When a local cause applies to receive support, they’re asked to classify themselves into a category like ‘Health’ or ‘Environment’ and the colours above are distinct for each category.

I’d love to give you an interactive map where you can explore the data for yourselves but I can’t do that today so instead, I’ve done some exploring for you. 

This scatter plot below just has the categories Health (yellow) and Community Development (purple).

Image showing the spread of local causes being helped by Co-op Members

Both types are widely spread but something I noticed was that there seems to be a split between the urban centres of Greater London and Northern England. London appears to be more densely covered by Health causes whereas places like Greater Manchester, Merseyside, Leeds, Tyneside are more balanced with Community Development causes.

Here’s another plot, this time with Social Inclusion (black) and Young People (blue).

Image showing the spread of local causes being helped by Co-op Members

Social Inclusion causes seem relatively concentrated in certain areas of the country. These tend to be the main cities. Causes within the category of Young People are both numerous and well spread, there seems to be a nation wide concern for causes that will help the next generation. 

Don’t forget we’re looking for the next round of good causes to support in May 2017, the closing date for applications is 16th December.

Alex Waters
Data Science.