User surveys can be adapted to collect information on the characteristics of project users; for example, by including a series of equality questions into a customer satisfaction survey or a project evaluation form. This helps cut down on the amount of extra work involved.
Typically you’ll gather this data anonymously, so there’s no requirement to comply with the Data Protection Act. The benefit of collecting your data anonymously is that you may get a better response to more sensitive equality questions. This approach doesn’t allow you to keep track of the people who use your project over time though. Instead it provides you with a snap shot of people using your project at one point.
In addition it means that you can’t survey or evaluate your project’s activities more than once per year as you risk collecting equality information about the same person more than once and therefore skewing your results.