2901.0 - Census of Population and Housing: Census Dictionary, 2016  
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2016 Census Dictionary >> Glossary >> Occupation (OCCP)


Occupation (OCCP)

Occupation information is collected in the Census for all employed people aged 15 years and over. Two questions are used in the Census:
    • 'In the main job held last week, what was the person's occupation - Give full title' and
    • 'What are the main tasks that the person usually performs in the occupation...'.

Collecting both occupation title and task information ensures more accurate coding of occupations.

For 2016, targeted supplementary questions on occupation, asking more specialised questions based on the initial response, have been added to the online census forms, to provide better quality fine-level data. Common occupation responses from 2011 which were difficult to code to an appropriate level of detail, for example 'nurse', are targeted by these questions.

Occupation data are essential for labour market analysis and policy formation. Changes in the occupational composition of the labour force are important for planning at the industry and geographic area levels. The data are used in analyses of education and training needs, and as indicators for industry assistance programs. Small area data on occupation are important in regional planning; in examining the occupational mobility of ethnic and other minority groups; and in measuring socioeconomic status variability between regions.

The 2016 Census uses the Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO), Version 1.2 to code occupation data.

Where the respondent does not provide adequate information for the response to be coded to the occupation level of the classification, the response is coded to the next highest level which is sufficiently broad to include all possibilities implied by the available information. Special 'not further defined (nfd)' codes ending in one or more zeros are used to code these responses.

Standard output for occupation data is at the 1, 2, 3 or 4-digit level of the classification. However, in some cases 6-digit level data can be made available from Information Consultancy.

See also Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO), Labour force, Occupation (OCCP).




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