6226.0.55.001 - Persons Not In the Labour Force, Underemployed Workers and Job Search Experience, Australia, February 2014 Quality Declaration 
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 23/02/2015  Final
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GLOSSARY

Active steps taken to find work (Job Search Experience (JSE))

Active steps taken by unemployed persons in their search for work during the current period of unemployment include:

  • wrote, phoned or applied in person to an employer for work;
  • answered an advertisement for a job in a newspaper;
  • answered an advertisement for a job on the Internet;
  • answered an advertisement for a job on notice boards;
  • had an interview;
  • contacted friends or relatives;
  • advertised or tendered for work;
  • registered with a Job Services Australia provider; or
  • registered with any other employment agency.

Actively looking for work (Persons Not in the Labour Force (PNILF))

People who were taking active steps to find work. Active steps comprise:
  • writing, telephoning or applying to an employer for work;
  • answering an advertisement for a job;
  • checking notice boards;
  • being registered with Centrelink as a job seeker;
  • checking or registering with any other employment agency;
  • advertising or tendering for work; and
  • contacting friends or relatives.

Age of youngest child

Age of the youngest child, 12 years and under, in the household.

All difficulties in finding work

All difficulties in finding work experienced by unemployed persons during the current period of unemployment.

All steps taken to find work

All steps taken by unemployed persons in their search for work during the current period of unemployment.

All steps taken to attain a job

All steps taken to attain a job by persons who started their current job in the previous 12 months. Refers to steps taken to attain a job, not necessarily the current job.

Available to start work

People who were available to start work with more hours either in the reference week, or in the four weeks subsequent to the interview.

Available to start work within four weeks

People who were available to start work within four weeks or, for people with children aged 12 years and under, could start work within four weeks if suitable child care was available.

Bachelor Degree or above

Bachelor Degree or above includes qualifications at the Postgraduate Degree level, Graduate Diploma and Graduate Certificate level and Bachelor Degree level.

Centrelink

Centrelink is a statutory authority responsible for delivering a range of Commonwealth Government services, including the registration of persons for job search assistance and income support.

Certificate not further defined

Survey responses are coded to Certificate not further defined (n.f.d.) when there is not enough information to code them to Certificate I, II, III or IV in the Australian Standard Classification of Education (ASCED), 2001 (cat. no. 1272.0), Level of Education classification.

Contributing family workers

People who work without pay in an economic enterprise operated by a relative.

Current job

A job that a person is currently working in and has lasted, or is likely to last, for a period of two weeks or more. For persons who have commenced more than one job in the previous 12 months, it is the job most recently started.

Did not want to work

People who were not classified as employed or unemployed who answered no when asked if they would like a job.

Discouraged job seekers

People with marginal attachment to the labour force who wanted to work and were available to start work within the next four weeks but whose main reason for not actively looking for work was that they believed they would not find a job for any of the following reasons:
  • considered too young by employers;
  • considered too old by employers;
  • believes ill health or disability discourages employers;
  • lacked the necessary schooling, training, skills or experience;
  • difficulties because of language or ethnic background;
  • no jobs in their locality or line of work;
  • no jobs in suitable hours; and
  • no jobs at all.

Duration of current period of insufficient work

For full-time workers who worked fewer than 35 hours in the reference week due to economic reasons, refers to the number of weeks they have been working fewer than 35 hours a week.

For part-time workers who would prefer to work more hours, refers to the number of weeks they have been wanting to work more hours.

As periods of insufficient work are recorded in full weeks and rounded down, this results in a slight understatement of duration.

Duration of current period of unemployment

The period of time from when an unemployed person began looking for work until the end of the reference week; or the period of time since an unemployed person last worked in any job for two weeks or more until the end of the reference week; whichever was the shorter period. Brief periods of work (of less than two weeks) since the person began looking for work are disregarded.

Duration of looking for work before current job

The number of weeks or years that employed persons were looking for work before being offered their current job or starting their own business. For employed persons who had worked before, it includes any time they were looking for work before leaving their previous employer.

Economic reasons

Economic reasons for full-time workers having worked fewer than 35 hours in the reference week are:
  • there was no work or not enough work available, e.g. due to material shortages;
  • they were stood down; or
  • they were on short time.

Employed

People aged 15 years 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); or
  • worked for one hour or more without pay in a family business or on a farm (i.e. family workers); or
  • 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; or
      • 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; or
      • away from work as a standard work or shift arrangement; or
      • on strike or locked out; or
      • on workers compensation and expected to return to their job; or
  • were employers or own account workers who had a job, business or farm, but were not at work.

Employee (excluding owner managers of incorporated enterprises (OMIEs)) job starters

Persons, excluding those who operate their own incorporated enterprise with or without employees, who work for a public or private employer and receive remuneration in wages, salary, a retainer fee from their employer while working on a commission basis, tips, piece rates, or payment in kind and started their current job in the previous 12 months.

Employees

People who:
  • worked for a public or private employer; and
  • received remuneration in wages, salary, or are paid a retainer fee by their employer and worked on a commission basis, or for tips or piece rates or payment in kind; or
  • operated their own incorporated enterprise with or without hiring employees.

Employers

People who operate their own unincorporated economic enterprise or engage independently in a profession or trade, and hire one or more employees.

Employment type in current job (JSE)

Classifies employed persons according to the following categories on the basis of their current job:
  • Employees (excluding OMIEs);
      • With paid leave entitlements;
      • Without paid leave entitlements;
  • Owner managers of incorporated enterprises;
  • Owner managers of unincorporated enterprises.

Employment type in main job (JSE)

For this survey, employment type in main job classifies employed persons according to the following categories on the basis of their main job (that is, the job in which the most hours were usually worked):
  • Employees (excluding OMIEs);
  • Owner managers of incorporated enterprises;
  • Owner managers of unincorporated enterprises;
  • Contributing family workers.

Family

Two or more people, 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.

Family reasons for not actively looking for work

Includes ill health of someone other than themselves, caring for children and other family considerations.

First job ever held lasting two weeks or more

Refers to employees (excluding OMIEs) who had never worked for two weeks or more before starting their current job.

Full-time preference (PNILF)

People who preferred to work 35 hours or more a week. For PNILF, full-time preference is derived from the preferred number of hours of persons who intended to or might enter the labour force in the next 12 months.

Full-time or part-time status of last job

The perception of people of whether they worked full-time or part-time in their last job.

Full-time workers

Employed persons who usually worked 35 hours or more a week (in all jobs) and others who, although usually working fewer than 35 hours a week, worked 35 hours or more during the reference week.

Fully employed workers

Employed people who:
  • worked full time during the reference week (including people who usually work part time but worked full time in the reference week); or
  • usually work full time but worked fewer than 35 hours in the reference week for non-economic reasons (such as illness or injury, leave holiday or flextime, or personal reasons); or
  • part-time workers who would not prefer to work additional hours.

Future starters

People waiting to start, within four weeks of the end of the reference week, a new job that they have already obtained (and could have started in the reference week if the job had been available then). Under International Labour Organisation (ILO) guidelines, these persons do not have to be actively looking for work to be classified as unemployed.

Had an interview with an employer

Includes face-to-face and phone interviews.

Had a job to go to

People who were waiting to start a job, but would not be starting within four weeks. Also includes people who had a job but, up to the end of the reference week, had been away from work without pay for four weeks or longer and had not been actively looking for work.

Had worked before

Refers to employees (excluding OMIEs) who had worked before and were either out of work or changed their employer before starting their current job.

Incorporated enterprise

An enterprise which is registered as a separate legal entity to its members or owners (also known as a limited liability company).

Industry

An industry is a group of businesses or organisations that undertake similar economic activities to produce both goods and services. In this publication, industry refers to ANZSIC Division as classified according to the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC), 2006 (Revision 2.0) (cat. no. 1292.0).

Intention to enter the labour force in the next 12 months

The intention of people to work or look for work in the 12 months following the interview.

Interstate

Refers to whether people were prepared to move to another state or territory if offered a suitable job.

Intrastate

Refers to whether people were prepared to move to another part of their state or territory if offered a suitable job.

Job

Any paid employment, full-time or part-time, lasting two weeks or more.

Job Network/Job Services employment agency

In July 2009, the Job Network was replaced by Job Services Australia. The Job Network/Job Services Australia is a national network of private, community and government organisations on contract to the government to provide employment placement services to the community. Job seekers who are registered with Centrelink for job search assistance are able to contact a Job Services Australia provider in their area to receive this service.

Job starters

Employed persons who started their current job in the previous 12 months.

Labour force

The civilian population is split into two mutually exclusive groups: the labour force (employed and unemployed people) and persons not in the labour force. The definitions conform closely to the international standard definitions adopted by the International Conferences of Labour Statisticians.

Left a job

People who are classified as voluntarily ceasing their last job.

Level of highest educational attainment

Level of highest educational attainment identifies the highest achievement a person has attained in any area of study. It is not a measurement of the relative importance of different fields of study but a ranking of qualifications and other educational attainments regardless of the particular area of study or the type of institution in which the study was undertaken.

Years 12, 11 and 10 include people who are currently undertaking school study (See Appendix 1 for more information).

Level of highest non-school qualification

Non-school qualifications are awarded for educational attainments other than those of pre-primary, primary or secondary education. They include qualifications at the Postgraduate Degree level, Masters Degree level, Graduate Diploma and Graduate Certificate level, Bachelor Degree level, Advanced Diploma and Diploma level, and Certificates I, II, III and IV levels and not further defined. Non-school qualifications may be attained concurrently with school qualifications.

Long-term unemployed

Persons whose duration of current period of unemployment is 12 months or more.

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.

Lost a job

People who are classified as involuntarily ceasing their last job.

Main activity when not in the labour force

The main activity of people who are not in the labour force since they last worked or looked for work (or in the last 12 months if they haven't worked in the last year).

Main difficulty in finding work

The main difficulty in finding work experienced during the current period of unemployment.

Main English-speaking countries

The list of main English-speaking countries provided here is not an attempt to classify countries on the basis of whether or not English is the predominant or official language of each country. It is a list of the main countries from which Australia receives, or has received, significant numbers of overseas settlers who are likely to speak English. These countries comprise the United Kingdom, the Republic of Ireland, New Zealand, Canada, South Africa and the United States of America.

Main job

The job in which most hours are usually worked.

Marginal attachment to the labour force

People who were not in the labour force in the reference week, wanted to work and:
  • were actively looking for work but did not meet the availability criterion to be classified as unemployed; or
  • were not actively looking for work but were available to start work within four weeks.

The criteria for determining those in the labour force are based on activity (i.e. working or looking for work) and availability to start work during the reference week. The criteria associated with marginal attachment to the labour force, in particular the concepts of wanting to work and reasons for not actively looking for work, are more subjective. Hence, the measurement against these criteria is affected by the respondent’s own interpretation of the concepts used. An individual respondent’s interpretation may be affected by their work aspirations, as well as family, economic and other commitments.

For more information see article Understanding the Australian Labour Force Using ABS Statistics in the February 2013 issue of Labour Force, Australia (6202.0).

Mean duration of current period of unemployment

The duration obtained by dividing the aggregate number of weeks a group has been unemployed by the number of persons in that group.

Mean duration of insufficient work

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

Median duration of current period of unemployment

The duration which divides unemployed persons into two groups of equal size, one comprising persons whose duration of unemployment is above the mid point, and the other, persons whose duration is below it.

Median duration of insufficient work

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

Non-economic reasons

Non-economic reasons for full-time workers having worked fewer than 35 hours in the reference week include:
  • holiday, flextime or study leave;
  • own illness or injury or sick leave;
  • standard work arrangements, shift work or rostered day(s) off;
  • on strike, locked out or took part in an industrial dispute;
  • bad weather or plant breakdown;
  • began, left or lost job during the reference week; and
  • personal reasons.

Not available to start work

Refers to people who were not available to start work with more hours either in the reference week, or in the four weeks following the interview.

Not fully employed

People who are not fully employed comprise part-time workers who would prefer to work more hours, and full-time workers who worked part-time hours in the reference week for economic reasons.

Number of offers of employment

The number of separate offers of employment received during the current period of unemployment.

Number of spells of looking for work in the previous 12 months

The number of times persons reported being out of work and looking for a job during the 12 months up to the end of the reference week.

Occupation

An occupation is a collection of jobs that are sufficiently similar in their title and tasks, skill level and skill specialisation which are grouped together for the purposes of classification. In this publication occupation refers to Major Group as defined by ANZSCO - Australian Standard Classification of Occupations, 2013, Version 1.2 (cat. no. 1220.0).

Occupation of last job

An occupation is a collection of jobs that are sufficiently similar in their title and tasks, skill level and skill specialisation which are grouped together for the purposes of classification. In this publication, occupation refers to Major Group as defined by ANZSCO - Australian Standard Classification of Occupations, 2013, Version 1.2 (cat. no. 1220.0) and relates to persons who have had a job less than 20 years ago only.

Own account workers

Persons who operate their own unincorporated economic enterprise or engaged independently in a profession or trade, and hired no employees.

Owner managers

Persons who work in their own business, with or without employees, whether or not the business is an incorporated enterprise. Comprises owner managers of incorporated enterprises and owner managers of unincorporated enterprises.

Owner managers of incorporated enterprises (OMIEs)

Persons who work in their own incorporated enterprise, that is, a business entity which is registered as a separate legal entity to its members or owners (also known as a limited liability company). These persons are classified as employees under status in employment.

Owner managers of unincorporated enterprises (OMUEs)

Persons who operate their own unincorporated enterprise, that is, a business entity in which the owner and the business are legally inseparable, so that the owner is liable for any business debts that are incurred. Includes those engaged independently in a trade or profession. These persons are classified as employers under status in employment if their business has employees, or own account worker if they do not.

Part-time preference

People who preferred to work one to 34 hours a week. For PNILF, part-time preference is derived from the preferred number of hours of persons who intended to or might enter the labour force in the next 12 months.

Part-time workers

Employed people who usually worked fewer 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.

Permanently not intending to work

People aged 65 years and over who said they were permanently not intending to work.

Permanently unable to work

This category is used only if a person volunteers that he/she or another member of the household is permanently unable to work.

Personal reasons for not actively looking for work

Includes own short-term illness or injury or long-term health condition or disability, pregnancy, attending an educational institution, had no need to work, welfare payments or pension may be affected, moved house or on holidays.

Persons in the labour force

People who were classified as being in the labour force, that is, either employed or unemployed.

Persons not in the labour force

People who were not in the categories employed or unemployed as defined.

Persons not in the labour force because they were caring for children, who wanted to work but not actively looking for work

People who wanted to work and:
  • were not actively looking for work because they were caring for children, but were available to start work within four weeks; or
  • were not actively looking for work and reported that they were not available to start work within four weeks because they were caring for children.

Preferred number of hours

The number of hours persons would like to work each week.

Preferred number of extra hours

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

Preferred total number of hours

The total number of hours per week an underemployed worker would have preferred to work.

Reasons for turning down job offers

Classifies reasons for turning down job offers in current period of unemployment according to the following categories:
  • Unsuitable Job Conditions
      • Unsatisfactory pay/conditions
      • Not in locality or line of work
      • Hours unsuitable
      • Unwilling to move state/city
      • Too far to travel
  • Personal Reasons
      • Own short-term illness or injury
      • Own long-term health condition or disability
      • Pregnancy
      • Welfare payments/pension may be affected
      • Returned to study
  • Family Reasons
      • Childcare
      • Ill health of other than self
  • Other
      • Waiting to start another job/starting new business
      • Other reasons
      • Did not know.

Status in employment (JSE)

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

Status in employment of last job (PNILF)

People who had a job in the last 20 years classified by whether they were employees, employers, own account workers, contributing family workers or unpaid voluntary workers in their last job.

Suitable job

A suitable job is:
  • any job for which the person is qualified (if applicable), is capable of performing and which provides adequate job conditions (including pay, hours, travel to work, etc.).
  • it is a job that would be accepted by the person irrespective of whether a move was required.

Time since last job

The elapsed time since ceasing the last job.

Time spent looking for work in the previous 12 months

The total number of weeks a person has been both out of work and looking for work at the same time during the 12 months up to the end of the reference week.

Underemployed workers

Underemployed workers are employed people who would prefer, and are available for, more hours of work than they currently have. They comprise:
  • part-time workers who would prefer to work more hours and were available to start work with more hours, either in the reference week or in the four weeks subsequent to the survey; and
  • 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 would prefer to work full time in the reference week and would have been available to do so.

Underemployment rate

The number of underemployed workers expressed as a percentage of the labour force.

Unemployed

Persons aged 15 years and over who were not employed during the reference week, and:
  • had actively looked for full-time or part-time work at any time in the four weeks up to the end of the reference week and were available for work in the reference week; or
  • were waiting to start a new job within four weeks from the end of the reference week, and could have started in the reference week if the job had been available then.

Unemployed looking for full-time work

Unemployed persons who:
  • actively looked for full-time work and were available for work in the reference week;
  • were not available for work in the reference week because they were waiting to start a new full-time job.

Unemployed looking for part-time work

Unemployed persons who:
  • actively looked for part-time work only and were available for work in the reference week; or
  • were not available for work in the reference week because they were waiting to start a new part-time job.

Usual number of hours

The number of hours usually worked in a week.

Usually worked full-time hours

Employed persons who usually worked 35 hours or more a week (in all jobs).

Usually worked part-time hours

Employed persons who usually worked fewer than 35 hours a week (in all jobs).

Wanted to work

People not in the labour force who were not actively looking for work who answered yes or maybe when asked if they would like a job, as well as those people not in the labour force who were actively looking. It is assumed those people actively looking want a job.

Whether had prior knowledge that job was available

Whether employed persons knew that a job was available with their current employer before making an approach to that employer for a job.

Whether had ever worked for two weeks or more

Whether unemployed persons had previously held a job lasting two weeks or more.

Whether out of work prior to starting job

Whether employed persons were not employed immediately prior to starting their current job.

Whether preferred to work more hours than usually worked

Whether employed persons who usually worked part-time hours, preferred to work more hours.

With paid leave entitlements

The entitlement of employees (excluding OMIEs) to either paid holiday leave or paid sick leave (or both) in their current job. Persons employed in their own business or who were contributing family workers were not asked questions about paid leave entitlements.

Without paid leave entitlements

Employees (excluding OMIEs) who were not entitled to, or did not know whether they were entitled to, paid holiday leave and paid sick leave in their current job.