Collecting Industry and Occupation Data Using the American Community Survey
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Collecting Industry and Occupation Data Using the American Community Survey. By Jennifer Cheeseman Day Presentation for Social Security Administration Occupational Information Development Advisory Panel May 5, 2011. History of I& O Data. Industry first collected in 1820 census

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Collecting Industry and Occupation Data Using the American Community Survey

By Jennifer Cheeseman Day

Presentation for

Social Security AdministrationOccupational Information Development Advisory Panel

May 5, 2011

History of i o data
History of I& O Data Community Survey

  • Industry

    • first collected in 1820 census

    • continuous basis since 1910

  • Occupation

    • collected since 1850 census

  • Class of worker

    • collected since 1910 census

  • Questions describe the work activity and occupational experience of the American labor force.

I o data uses government
I&O Data Uses: Community SurveyGovernment

  • to formulate policy and programs for employment, career development and training

  • to provide information on the occupational skills of the labor force in a given area to analyze career trends

  • to help create estimates used in the allocation formulas or for eligibility criteria in many federal programs

I o data uses businesses
I&O Data Uses: Community SurveyBusinesses

  • to measure compliance with antidiscrimination policies

  • to decide where to locate new plants, stores, or offices

  • to develop business plans

  • to plan, budget, and pay benefits

I o data uses researchers
I&O Data Uses: Community SurveyResearchers

  • to analyze social and economic issues, such as

    • earnings inequality

    • labor force transitions

    • employment outcomes

    • returns to education

Examples of acs i o data uses
Examples of ACS I&O Data Uses Community Survey

  • National Science Foundation’s Survey of College Graduates

    • Uses 2009 ACS as sample based on field of degree and occupation

  • EEO Special Tabulation

    • Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

    • Department of Justice – Civil Rights Division

    • Department of Labor – Office of Federal Contract Compliance

    • Office of Personnel Management

Eeo special tabulation
EEO Special Tabulation Community Survey

  • External benchmark for conducting comparisons between the racial, ethnic, and sex composition of each employer's workforce to its available labor market

  • Used by organizations to develop and update their affirmative action plans

Surveys using census i o coding
Surveys Using Census I & O Coding Community Survey

  • American Community Survey

  • Current Population Survey

  • Survey of Income and Program Participation

  • American Time Use Survey

  • National Crime Victimization Survey

  • National Health Interview Survey

  • New York City Housing Vacancy Survey

  • National Survey of College Graduates

ACS I & O Data Process Community Survey

Data capture

Questionnaire completion (collection)

Clerical coding


  • Paper

  • CATI

  • CAPI

  • Coding file for I&O

  • Qualified coders

  • Referralists

  • QA

  • Keyed from image (KFI)

  • Data capture file

3 modes of data collection

Capture Community Survey




3 Modes of Data Collection

Acs paper questionnaire
ACS Paper Questionnaire Community Survey

  • 3 million addresses annually

  • 5 demographic questions

  • 21 housing questions

  • 48 population questions

    • I&O Questions # 41-46

Everyone 15 and older who had a job during the past 5 years
Everyone 15 and older who had a job during the past 5 years Community Survey

  • With a job last week

    • Only 1 job

    • Job with most hours

  • If not working last week

    • Most recent job in past 5 years

Acs questionnaire class of worker item
ACS Questionnaire Community SurveyClass of Worker Item

  • Class of worker categorizes people according to the type of ownership of the employing organization

Acs questionnaire industry items
ACS Questionnaire Community SurveyIndustry Items

  • Industry data describe the kind of business conducted by a person’s employing organization

  • 3 industry questions

Acs questionnaire industry type check box
ACS Questionnaire Community SurveyIndustry Type Check box

  • Check box on industry type

Acs questionnaire occupation items
ACS Questionnaire Community SurveyOccupation Items

  • Occupation describes the kind of work a person does on the job

  • 2 occupation questions

Data capture at jeffersonville in

Collection Community Survey




Data Capture at Jeffersonville, IN

Creation of data capture file
Creation of Data Capture File Community Survey

  • About 45 keyers daily at National Processing Center

  • Truncate write-ins to 60 characters for I&O items

  • Illegal value responses identified

Data capture file
Data Capture File Community Survey

  • Age

  • Sex

  • Date of birth

  • Educational attainment

  • Class of worker checkbox

  • Armed forces checkbox

  • Employer name write-in

  • Kind of business write-in

  • Industry type checkbox

  • Kind of work write-in

  • Duties write-in

  • Geographical information

Example of write ins
Example of Write-ins Community Survey

I o coding

Collection Community Survey




I & O Coding

  • All ACS I&O coding is computer assisted clerical coding

  • Over 200,000 ACS cases per month

  • Batches of 100 cases at a time

Coding process
Coding Process Community Survey

I o coding system
I&O Coding System Community Survey

Industry, occupation, or military


Industry code



Census i o codes
Census I&O Codes Community Survey

  • Unique set of codes for household surveys

  • Collectability – observable detail on write-in

  • Degree of aggregation varies by sector or major group

  • Updated with NAICS and SOC changes

Industry codes
Industry Codes Community Survey

NAICS Manual-Industry

  • Census industry codes based on NAICS

  • Covers all 20 sectors

  • Classified based on NAICS two-digit through six-digit codes

  • 269 Census industry codes

Industry code crosswalk excerpt
Industry Code Crosswalk ( Community Surveyexcerpt)

Occupation codes
Occupation Codes Community Survey

SOC Manual-Occupation

  • Census occupation codes based on SOC

  • Covers all 23 major occupational groups

  • Classification detail based on SOC two-digit through six-digit codes

  • 539 Census occupation codes

Occupation code crosswalk excerpt
Occupation Code Crosswalk ( Community Surveyexcerpt)

Coding indexes
Coding Indexes Community Survey

Edits universe check

Collection Community Survey




Edits: Universe Check

For each person record:

Age > 15

Worked in past 5 years

Incomplete data logical edits
Incomplete Data: Logical Edits Community Survey

  • Incomplete entries can be corrected using the Alphabetical Index of Industries and Occupations

Incomplete data assignment from donors
Incomplete Data: Assignment from Donors Community Survey

Donor respondent -- a “similar” person based on characteristics such as age, sex, educational attainment, income, employment status, and weeks worked

  • Used to fill missing item when

    • missing code for industry, occupation, class of worker item

    • All labor force and income data are blank, all of these economic questions are assigned from a “similar” person who had provided all these data

Consistency check
Consistency Check Community Survey

  • Evaluates consistency among all of the labor force, education, and income data

Example of an edit occupation lawyers
Example of an Edit: Community SurveyOccupation = Lawyers

  • Where AGE > 15 and EMPLOYED and OCCUPATION CODE is “Lawyers”

  • EDUCATIONAL ATTAINMENT < Master’s degree and INCOME per Week is less than $930

  • Make OCCUPATIONAL CODE = “Paralegals and legal assistants”

Data products
Data Products Community Survey

More information
More Information Community Survey

  • Census Occupation website:


  • Industry and Occupation Statistics branch

    • Telephone: 301-763-3239

  • [email protected]

    • Telephone: 301-763-3399