6209.0 - Labour Mobility, Australia, February 2012 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 04/09/2012   
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1 The statistics in this publication were compiled from data collected in the Labour Mobility Survey, conducted throughout Australia in February 2012 as a supplement to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) monthly Labour Force Survey (LFS). Respondents to the LFS who fell within 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. LFS also contains definitions of demographic and labour force characteristics, and information about telephone interviewing which are relevant to both the monthly LFS and supplementary surveys.


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).


4 The scope of the LFS is restricted to persons aged 15 years and over and excludes the following people:

  • members of the permanent defence forces;
  • certain diplomatic personnel of overseas governments, customarily excluded from the Census and estimated population counts;
  • overseas residents in Australia; and
  • members of non-Australian defence forces (and their dependants).

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 urban and rural areas in all states and territories, but excluded persons living in Indigenous communities in very remote parts of Australia.


7 The estimates in this publication relate to persons covered by the survey in February 2012. 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.


8 Supplementary surveys are not always conducted on the full LFS sample. Since August 1994 the sample for supplementary surveys has been restricted to no more than seven-eighths of the LFS sample.

9 The initial sample for the February 2012 LFS consisted of 36,812 private dwelling households and special dwelling units. Of the 29,682 private dwelling households and special dwelling units that remained in the survey after sample loss (e.g. households selected in the survey which had no residents in scope for the LFS, vacant or derelict dwellings and dwellings under construction), approximately 28,117 or 94.7% fully responded to the Labour Mobility Survey. The number of completed interviews obtained from these private dwellings and special dwelling units (after taking into account scope and coverage exclusions) was 32,119.


10 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 effective processing procedures.


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


12 Country of birth data are classified according to the Standard Australian Classification of Countries (SACC), 2011 (cat. no. 1269.0).

13 From 2006, occupation data are classified according to the ANZSCO - Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations, First Edition, Revision 1, 2009 (cat. no. 1220.0). This classification replaced ASCO - Australian Standard Classification of Occupations, Second Edition, 1997 (cat. no. 1220.0)

14 Also from 2006, industry data are classified according to the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC), 2006 (Revision 1.0) (cat. no. 1292.0). This classification replaced the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC), 1993 (cat. no. 1292.0).

15 Educational attainment data are classified according to Australian Standard Classification of Education (ASCED) (cat. no. 1272.0).


16 The Labour Force Survey estimates and estimates from the supplementary surveys, are calculated in such a way as to sum to independent estimates of the civilian population aged 15 years and over (population benchmarks). These population benchmarks are based on Estimated Resident Population (ERP) data. Generally, revisions are made to population benchmarks after each five-yearly Census of Population and Housing (Census), however revisions were made to the population benchmarks from July 2011, including those used for the 2012 Labour Mobility Survey, to reflect revisions to ERP. For more details on population benchmarks, see the Explanatory Notes in Labour Force, Australia (cat. no. 6202.0), and for details about the revisions made see the article in the September 2011 issue of Labour Force, Australia (cat. no. 6202.0).

17 The scope of the Labour Mobility Survey was expanded in February 2006 to include all people aged 15 years and over.

18 In 2008, the introduction of ANZSCO First Edition and ANZSIC 2006 meant that data relating to change in occupation and industry are not comparable with previous years. Consequently, time series data for 'Whether changed occupation (last to current employer/business)' and 'Whether changed industry (last to current employer/business)' was removed from the 2008 Table 1 and Table 12. In previous issues Table 2 presented time series data for 'Duration with current employer/business'. This information is now presented in Table 1. Users need to exercise care when comparing these estimates with publications prior to February 2008.

19 From 2008, data item 23, 'Whether changed occupation group (with current employer for one year or more)' is derived and output based on change at Major and Minor occupation levels. In previous years, this was derived and output based on change at any level. The following table compares estimates for data items 23a and 23b with how data item 23 was derived in 2006.

Employees (excluding OMIEs) who had been with their current employer for one year or more, Whether changed occupation group-comparison of 2008 and 2006 methods

2008 data item 23A Major level
2008 data item 23B Minor level
2008 using the 2006 method (any level)

Whether changed occupation group (with current employer for one year or more)
Same occupation
6 174.8
6 102.7
5 990.1
Changed occupation
6 357.1
6 357.1
6 357.1

20 In 2008 and previous years, other data items relating to change in occupation and change in industry are derived and output based on change in Major occupation group and change in industry Division.


21 Due to differences in the scope and sample size of this supplementary survey and that of the monthly LFS, the estimation procedure may lead to some small variations between labour force estimates from this survey and those from the LFS.


22 Similar surveys were conducted in November 1972, February 1975, February 1976 and annually from February 1979 to February 1992. Since then it has been conducted biennially. Results were published in Labour Mobility, Australia (cat. no. 6209.0).


23 Historical estimates of the number and proportion of people who were mobile in the labour market for the periods 1990 to 1996 were revised in the 1998 publication. Previously published estimates for reference periods from 1990 to 1996 will still contain incorrectly derived data. If you require further information about these revisions, please contact the National Information and Referral Service on 1300 135 070 or the Labour Market Section on (02) 6252 7206.


24 The ABS plans to collect labour mobility data again in February 2014. See Information paper: Outcomes of the Labour Household Surveys Content Review, 2012 (cat. no. 6107.0) for more details.


25 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.


Confidentialised Unit Record File (CURF)

26 It is expected that a CURF will be produced from the Labour Mobility Survey subject to approval by the Australian Statistician. The Basic CURF will be available on CD-ROM, via the ABS Remote Access Data Laboratory (RADL) and the ABS Data Laboratory (ABSDL). The Expanded CURF will only be accessible through the RADL and ABSDL. The CURF will be available in SAS, STATA and SPSS format. A full range of up-to-date information about the availability of ABS CURFs and about applying for access to these is available via the ABS web site (see Services - CURF Microdata). For enquiries regarding CURFs, contact ABS CURF Management Unit via email at microdata.access@abs.gov.au or telephone (02) 6252 7714.


27 Other ABS publications which may be of interest include:
28 Current publications and other products released by the ABS are available from the Statistics Page on the ABS website. The ABS also issues a daily Release Advice on the website which details products to be released in the week ahead.