Australian Bureau of Statistics

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6265.0 - Underemployed Workers, Australia, Sep 2002  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 17/04/2003   
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Centrelink

A statutory authority responsible for delivering a range of Commonwealth government services, including registering persons for assistance in finding work and providing referrals to job placement agencies.

Duration of insufficient work

The duration of insufficient work is the length of time underemployed workers have been working less than 35 hours a week. As periods of insufficient work are recorded in full weeks and rounded down, this results in a slight understatement of duration.

Employed persons

Persons aged 15 and over who, during the reference week:

  • worked for one hour or more for pay, profit, commission or payment in kind, in a job or business or on a farm (comprising employees, employers and own account workers)
  • worked for one hour or more without pay in a family business or on a farm (i.e. contributing family workers)
  • were employees who had a job but were not at work and were:
  • away from work for less than four weeks up to the end of the reference week
  • away from work for more than four weeks up to the end of the reference week and received pay for some or all of the four week period to the end of the reference week
  • away from work as a standard work or shift arrangement
  • on strike or locked out
  • on workers' compensation and expected to return to their job
  • were employers or own account workers who had a job, business or farm, but were not at work.

Family

Two or more persons, one of whom is at least 15 years of age, who are related by blood, marriage (registered or de facto), adoption, step or fostering; and who are usually resident in the same household. The basis of a family is formed by identifying the presence of a couple relationship, lone parent-child relationship or other blood relationship. Some households will, therefore, contain more than one family.

Full-time workers

Full-time workers are employed persons who usually worked 35 hours or more a week (in all jobs) and those who, although usually worked less than 35 hours a week, worked 35 hours or more during the reference week.

Fully employed workers

Fully employed workers are employed persons who:
  • worked full-time during the reference week (including persons who usually work part-time but worked full-time in the reference week)
  • usually work full-time but worked less than 35 hours in the reference week for non-economic reasons (such as illness or injury, leave holiday or flextime, or personal reasons)
  • part-time workers who do not want to work additional hours.

Labour Force

The civilian population can be split into two mutually exclusive groups: the labour force (employed and unemployed persons) and persons not in the labour force.

Looking for work with more hours

Looked for work with more hours at some time during the four weeks up to the end of the reference week.

Main English-speaking countries

The main English-speaking countries are the United Kingdom, Ireland, Canada, South Africa, the United States of America and New Zealand.

Mean duration of insufficient work

The mean duration of insufficient work is obtained by dividing the aggregate number of weeks a group has had insufficient work by the number of persons in that group.

Mean preferred number of extra hours

The mean preferred number of extra hours is obtained by dividing the total preferred number of extra hours reported by a group by the number of persons in that group.

Median duration of insufficient work

The median duration of insufficient work is obtained by dividing underemployed workers into two equal groups, one comprising persons whose duration of insufficient work is above the median and the other, persons whose duration is below it.

Part-time workers

Employed persons who usually worked less than 35 hours a week (in all jobs) and either did so during the reference week, or were not at work during the reference week.

Preferred number of extra hours

The number of extra hours a week an underemployed worker would have preferred to work.

Reference week

The week before the survey.

Relationship in household

The relationship of persons who live in the same household. Some households may contain more than one family.

Status in employment

Employed persons classified by whether they were employees, employers, own account workers, or contributing family workers.

Underemployed workers

Underemployed workers are employed persons who want, and are available for, more hours of work than they currently have. They comprise:
  • part-time workers who want to work more hours and are available to start work with more hours, either in the reference week or in the four weeks subsequent to the survey
  • full-time workers who worked part-time hours in the reference week for economic reasons (such as being stood down or insufficient work being available). It is assumed that these people wanted to work full-time in the reference week and would have been available to do so.

Usual number of hours

The number of hours usually worked in a week.

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