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6238.0.55.001 - Microdata: Barriers and Incentives to Labour Force Participation, Retirement and Retirement Intentions, July 2010 to June 2011 Quality Declaration 
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 28/05/2013  First Issue
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QUALITY DECLARATION – SUMMARY

INSTITUTIONAL ENVIRONMENT

For information on the institutional environment of the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), including the legislative obligations of the ABS, financing and governance arrangements, and mechanisms for scrutiny of ABS operations, please see ABS Institutional Environment.

RELEVANCE

The Barriers and Incentives to Labour Force Participation topic provides data on people aged 18 years and over who are either not employed or work less than 16 hours. The Barriers and Incentives to Labour Force Participation topic is designed to bring various factors which influence labour force participation into one data source for comparison. The survey provides information on the potential labour force and what prevents these people finding or taking up (more) work. Related supplementary surveys of Persons Not in the Labour Force, Australia (cat. no. 6220.0), Underemployed Workers, Australia (cat. no. 6265.0) and Job Search Experience, Australia (cat. no. 6222.0) offer more detailed information on the various populations.

The Retirement and Retirement Intentions topic presents information about the retirement status and retirement intentions of people aged 45 years and over who have, at some time, worked for two weeks or more. The data collected in the Retirement and Retirement Intentions topic provide information on retirement trends, the factors which influence decisions to retire, and the income arrangements that retirees and potential retirees have made to provide for their retirement. The data are cross-classified by a range of demographic characteristics such as age, sex, marital status and country of birth, as well as labour force characteristics.

For a complete list of populations and data items collected in these topics, see the Barriers and Incentives to Labour Force Participation and Retirement and Retirement Intentions TableBuilder Data Item List that can be accessed from the Downloads page.

TIMELINESS

The most recent Barriers and Incentives to Labour Force Participation and Retirement and Retirement Intentions topics were conducted throughout Australia during the 2010-11 financial year. They were a component of the 2010-11 Multipurpose Household Survey (MPHS), collected as a supplement to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Labour Force Survey (LFS). Results from the survey were released approximately six months after the completion of enumeration, on 6 December 2011 in the publication Barriers and Incentives to Labour Force Participation (cat. no. 6239.0) and 13 December 2011 in Retirement and Retirement Intentions, Australia (cat. no. 6238.0).

ACCURACY

The response rate for the 2010-11 MPHS was approximately 80% after taking exclusions into account. See the Explanatory Notes (paragraph 11) of the summary publications for more information. The exclusion of people living in very remote parts of Australia has only a minor impact on aggregate estimates, except for the Northern Territory where these people account for around 23% of the population.

The number of completed interviews (after taking into account scope and coverage exclusions) for the Barriers and Incentives to Labour Force Participation topic was 5,374, and 6,929 for the Retirement and Retirement Intentions topic.

Estimates from the survey are subject to sampling and non-sampling errors.

The MPHS was designed primarily to provide estimates at the Australia level. Broad estimates are available for states and territories, though users should exercise caution when using estimates at this level because of the presence of high sampling errors.

COHERENCE

No new content was included in the 2010-11 topics, and it only contained core content. As a result, questions on incentives to join or increase participation in the labour force, self assessed health, whether had private health insurance, housing tenure and intentions for a healthy/active retirement that were included in the 2008-09 survey, were excluded.

Care should be taken in interpreting the data in the 'All reasons not available to start work/more hours' and 'Main reason not available to start work/more hours' items. Between the 2008-09 and 2010-11 MPHS, there was an increase in 'caring for children' compared to 'home duties' as the reason for not being available to work.

Since the 1997 issue of Retirement and Retirement Intentions there have been conceptual changes which affect time series comparisons. For instance, 'retired from the labour force' is now defined as 'persons who had previously worked for two weeks or more and had retired from work or looking for work, and did not intend to look for, or take up, work at any time in the future'. In the 1997 issue, this concept was defined as 'persons who had retired from work or looking for work of more than 10 hours per week, and did not intend to work in the future'. These people were considered fully retired. Persons who had never worked more than 10 hours were considered fully retired. Due to these conceptual changes, users should exercise caution when comparing estimates with previous surveys.

High reporting of non-personal income money sources (e.g. partner's income, savings or selling assets) to personal income questions in previous cycles of this survey led to the inclusion of 'all/main sources of funds for meeting living costs' data items in 2008–09 to improve this information. The categories for these items are 'personal income', 'partner's income', 'savings or selling assets' and 'none of the above'. The aim was to determine the main source of funds for meeting day-to-day living expenses (currently and at retirement or expected at retirement). These categories have once again been included for the 2010-11 MPHS.

'Transition to retirement plans' were collected from employed persons aged 45 years and over, through a sequence of questions about changes they might make to their working arrangements before retiring. Examples include whether they would work part time, change their employer or change other aspects of their employment such as working more from home or reducing their responsibilities. For those who reported transition plans, the age at which these were to be implemented was also collected (as an exact age or age range). Range responses were included in 'average age intends to implement transition plans' by substituting the low-point of the range into the calculation.

The related supplementary surveys of Persons Not in the Labour Force, Australia (cat. no. 6220.0), Underemployed Workers, Australia (cat. no. 6265.0) and Job Search Experience, Australia (cat. no. 6222.0) offer more detailed information on the various populations of interest in the Barriers and Incentives to Labour Force Participation topic. Data from these supplementary surveys are not directly comparable with data from Barriers and Incentives to Labour Force Participation as there are differences in scope, collection methodology and sample design (including sample size). For example, the three supplementary surveys are conducted in a particular month each year, whereas Barriers and Incentives to Labour Force Participation data are usually collected over the 12 months of a financial year (for 2004-05, the survey was conducted over 11 months). Information for the supplementary surveys is collected using the Any Responsible Adult methodology, whereas the Barriers and Incentives topic uses personal interviewing. For more information see chapters 21 and 22 of Labour Statistics: Concepts, Sources and Methods (cat. no. 6102.0.55.001)

Detailed data on retirement is also available in Employment Arrangements, Retirement and Superannuation, Australia (cat. no. 6361.0) where concepts are comparable.

INTERPRETABILITY

The Barriers and Incentives to Labour Force Participation and Retirement and Retirement Intentions publications contains detailed Explanatory Notes, Technical Notes and a Glossary that provide information on the terminology, classifications and other technical aspects associated with these statistics.

Seasonally adjusted and trend estimates are not produced. The estimates are based on information collected over the financial year. However, seasonal weighting is not undertaken.

Further commentary is often available through articles and data published in other ABS products, including:

Australian Labour Market Statistics (cat. no. 6105.0) - refer to appendix 2 for past articles.

Australian Social Trends (cat. no. 4102.0) - refer to the Cumulative list of articles for past articles.

Labour Statistics: Concepts, Sources and Methods (cat. no. 6102.0.55.001).

Year Book, Australia (cat. no. 1301.0) - refer to the 'Labour' chapter.

ACCESSIBILITY

Microdata products are available to approved users. Users wishing to access the microdata should read the How to Apply for Microdata web page, before applying for access through the Registration Centre. Users should also familiarise themselves with information available via the Microdata Entry Page.

A full list of available microdata can be viewed via the Expected and available Microdata. More detail regarding types and modes of access to CURFs can be found on the CURF Access Modes and Levels of Detail web page.

Microdata for the 2010-11 Barriers and Incentives in Labour Force Participation and Retirement and Retirement Intentions topics are available through the TableBuilder product. Data for previous surveys conducted in 2004-05, 2006-07 and 2008-09 can be accessed through the Remote Access Data Laboratory (RADL).

Any questions regarding access to microdata can be forwarded to microdata.access@abs.gov.au or phone (02) 6252 7714.


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