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6250.0 - Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Recent Migrants, Australia, Nov 2007 Quality Declaration 
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 28/05/2008   
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EXPLANATORY NOTES


INTRODUCTION

1 The statistics in this publication were compiled from data collected in the Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Recent Migrants Survey, conducted throughout Australia in November 2007 as a supplement to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) monthly Labour Force Survey (LFS). Respondents to the LFS who were in the scope of the supplementary survey were asked further questions.

2 The publication Labour Force, Australia (cat. no. 6202.0) contains information about survey design, sample redesign, scope, coverage and population benchmarks relevant to the monthly LFS, which also apply to supplementary surveys. It also contains definitions of demographic and labour force characteristics, and information about computer assisted and telephone interviewing which are relevant to both the monthly LFS and supplementary surveys.


CONCEPTS, SOURCES AND METHODS

3 The conceptual framework used in Australia's LFS aligns closely with the standards and guidelines set out in Resolutions of the International Conference of Labour Statisticians. Descriptions of the underlying concepts and structure of Australia's labour force statistics, and the sources and methods used in compiling these estimates, are presented in Labour Statistics: Concepts, Sources and Methods (cat. no. 6102.0.55.001) which is available on the ABS web site <http://www.abs.gov.au> (Methods, Classifications, Concepts & Standards).


SCOPE

4 The scope of the LFS included all persons aged 15 years and over and excluded the following people:

  • members of the Australian permanent defence forces
  • certain diplomatic personnel of overseas governments, customarily excluded from censuses and surveys
  • overseas residents in Australia
  • members of non-Australian defence forces (and their dependants) stationed in Australia.

5 Students at boarding schools, patients in hospitals, residents of homes (e.g. retirement homes, homes for people with disabilities), and inmates of prisons are excluded from all supplementary surveys.

6 This supplementary survey was conducted in both rural and urban areas in all states and territories, but excluded persons living in very remote parts of Australia who would otherwise have been within the scope of the survey. The exclusion of these persons will only have a minor impact on any aggregate estimates that are produced for states and territories, with the exception of the Northern Territory where such persons account for approximately 23% of the population.

7 This supplementary survey was restricted to persons who were born overseas, arrived in Australia after 1997, were aged 15 years and over on arrival, and had either obtained permanent Australian resident status prior to or after arrival, or were temporary residents who planned to stay in Australia for 12 months or more. Persons who were Australian citizens prior to their arrival in Australia, or who were born in New Zealand or held New Zealand citizenship, were excluded from the survey.


COVERAGE

8 The estimates in this publication relate to persons covered by the survey in November 2007. In the LFS, coverage rules are applied which aim to ensure that each person is associated with only one dwelling, and hence has only one chance of selection in the survey. See Labour Force, Australia (cat. no. 6202.0) for more details.


DATA COLLECTION

9 Information was collected through interviews conducted over a two-week period during November 2007.

10 The survey was conducted using a sub-sample of the Monthly Population Survey (MPS) sample. The MPS, which is described in Labour Force, Australia (cat. no. 6202.0), comprises the monthly labour force topic and supplementary topics. The household sample for the MPS was selected using multistage sampling techniques. Seven-eighths of the private dwellings selected for the MPS were eligible for the survey. Information was obtained from all persons in the household who met the scope conditions of the supplementary survey. Information was obtained personally from each individual, although where two or more persons migrated on the same visa application when first coming to Australia to live for one year or more, a proxy interview may have been conducted with another person who migrated on the same visa application.


SAMPLE SIZE

11 Approximately 95% of selected households were fully responding to the Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Recent Migrants Survey. In total, 53,402 persons from about 29,000 selected private dwellings and special dwelling units were in the survey sample and either were out of scope for the supplementary survey or were in scope and fully responded to the survey. A total of 2,530 complete interviews were obtained from persons who were in scope of the Labour Force and Other Characteristics of Recent Migrants Survey.


RELIABILITY OF THE ESTIMATES

12 Estimates in this publication are subject to sampling and non-sampling errors:
  • Sampling error is the difference between the published estimate and the value that would have been produced if all dwellings had been included in the survey. For more information see the Technical Note.
  • Non-sampling errors are inaccuracies that occur because of imperfections in reporting by respondents and interviewers, and errors made in coding and processing data. These inaccuracies may occur in any enumeration, whether it be a full count or a sample. Every effort is made to reduce the non-sampling error to a minimum by careful design of questionnaires, intensive training and supervision of interviewers and efficient processing procedures.


SEASONAL FACTORS

13 The estimates are based on information collected in the survey month and, due to seasonal factors, may not be representative of other months of the year.


CLASSIFICATIONS USED

Country of birth

14 Country of birth data are classified according to the Standard Australian Classification of Countries (SACC), Second Edition, 2008 (cat. no. 1269.0).


Occupation

15 Occupation data are classified according to the ANZSCO - Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupation, First Edition, 2006 (cat. no. 1220.0).


Industry

16 Industry data are classified according to the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC), 2006 (cat. no. 1292.0).


Education

17 Educational attainment data are classified according to the Australian Standard Classification of Education (ASCED), 2001 (cat. no. 1272.0).


COMPARABILITY OF TIME SERIES

18 Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Migrants Surveys conducted up to and including November 1996 were restricted to migrants who arrived in Australia after 1970, were aged 18 years and over on arrival, and had obtained permanent Australian resident status. For November 1999, the survey was restricted to migrants who arrived in Australia after 1980, were aged 18 years and over on arrival, and had obtained permanent Australian resident status. For November 2004, the survey included migrants aged 15 years and over on arrival, who arrived in Australia after 1984 who had obtained permanent Australian resident status, as well as people who were temporary residents of Australia for 12 months or more. For November 2007, the survey included migrants who arrived in Australia after 1997 were aged 15 years and over on arrival, who had obtained permanent Australian resident status, as well as people who were temporary residents of Australia for 12 months or more, and excluded those born in New Zealand, those holding New Zealand citizenship and those who held Australian citizenship prior to their arrival in Australia.

19 Several changes to question wording were made to the 2007 survey. These changes were made to increase respondent understanding of the questions.

20 Several changes to the data items collected were made to the 2007 survey. Data items relating to the country of last residence were not asked in 2007. Several new data items were collected in 2007, including the length of time before finding a job after arriving in Australia; selected details of the first job held in Australia; whether the highest non-school qualification obtained before arrival was used in the first job held in Australia; whether difficulties were experienced finding work in Australia; and whether help was received finding work in Australia. A complete list of data items collected in 2007 can be found in Appendix 1.

21 It is impracticable to obtain information relating to labour force status of people before migration according to the strict definitions used in the monthly LFS. It is for this reason that ‘Had a job’ and ‘Did not have a job’ are used to describe previous labour force status, while 'Employed', 'Unemployed' and 'Not in the labour force' are used to describe labour force status as at November 2007.


COMPARABILITY WITH OTHER ABS SOURCES

22 Since the Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Recent Migrants Survey is conducted as a supplement to the LFS, data items collected in the LFS are also available. However, there are some important differences between the two surveys. The Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Recent Migrants Survey sample is a subset of the LFS sample (see Paragraph 10 of these Explanatory Notes) and the Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Recent Migrants Survey had a response rate of 95% which is lower than the LFS response rate for the same period of 96%. Due to these differences between the samples, the Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Recent Migrants Survey data are weighted as a separate process to the weighting of LFS data. Differences may therefore be found in the estimates collected in the LFS and published as part of the Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Recent Migrants Survey, when compared with estimates published in the November 2007 issue of Labour Force, Australia (cat. no. 6202.0).

23 Additionally, estimates from the Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Recent Migrants Survey may differ from the estimates produced from other ABS collections, for several reasons. The Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Recent Migrants Survey is a sample survey and its results are subject to sampling error. Results may differ from other sample surveys, which are also subject to sampling error. Users should take account of the relative standard errors (RSEs) on estimates and those of other survey estimates where comparisons are made.

24 Differences may also exist in the scope and/or coverage of the Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Recent Migrants Survey compared to other surveys. Differences in estimates, when compared to the estimates of other surveys, may result from different reference periods reflecting seasonal variations, non-seasonal events that may have impacted on one period but not another, or because of underlying trends in the phenomena being measured.

25 Finally, differences can occur as a result of using different collection methodologies. This is often evident in comparisons of similar data items reported from different ABS collections where, after taking account of definition and scope differences and sampling error, residual differences remain. These differences could be partly attributed to differing modes of the collections, such as whether data is collected by an interviewer or self-enumerated by the respondent, whether the data is collected from the person themselves or from a proxy respondent, and the level of experience of the interviewers. Differences may also result from the context in which questions are asked, i.e. where in the interview the questions are asked and the nature of preceding questions. The impacts on data of different collection methodologies are difficult to quantify.

26 The following table, Comparison of Data, Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Recent Migrants Survey and Labour Force Survey, presents comparisons between some broad level data items that were collected from all persons aged 15 years and over on the LFS in November 2007 in the Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Recent Migrants Survey. The comparison shows that Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Recent Migrants Survey data are broadly consistent with LFS data.

COMPARISON OF DATA, Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Recent Migrants Survey and Labour Force Survey

Labour Force Survey, November 2007
Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Recent Migrants Survey, November 2007
%
%

LABOUR FORCE STATUS
Employed full-time
44.8
45.7
Employed part-time
17.5
17.8
Total employed
62.3
63.5
Unemployed
2.7
2.7
Not in the labour force
35.1
33.8
COUNTRY OF BIRTH AND YEAR OF ARRIVAL
Born in Australia
70.0
70.8
Born overseas
30.0
29.2
Arrived before 1998
22.8
21.8
Arrived after 1997
7.2
7.4



COMPARABILITY WITH NON-ABS SOURCES

27 The Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) are the main holder of data containing personal information on migrants. Due to differences in collection objectives and definitions, data from the Labour Force Status and Other Characteristics of Recent Migrants Survey are not comparable with DIAC data.


PREVIOUS SURVEYS

28 Results of previous surveys have been published in:

NEXT SURVEY

29 The ABS plans to conduct this survey again in November 2010.


ACKNOWLEDGEMENT

30 ABS publications draw extensively on information provided freely by individuals, businesses, governments and other organisations. Their continued cooperation is very much appreciated: without it, the wide range of statistics published by the ABS would not be available. Information received by the ABS is treated in strict confidence as required by the Census and Statistics Act 1905.


RELATED PUBLICATIONS

31 ABS publications which may be of interest include:
32 Current publications and other products released by the ABS are available from the ABS web site <http://www.abs.gov.au>. The ABS also issues a daily Release Advice on the web site (Future releases) which details products to be released in the week ahead. The Migrant and Ethnicity theme page also contains a wealth of information and useful resources. This site can be accessed through the ABS web site <http://www.abs.gov.au>.


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