6333.0.00.001 - Microdata: Characteristics of Employment, Australia  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 16/12/2020   
   Page tools: Print Print Page Print all pages in this productPrint All


This product provides a range of information about the release of microdata relating to employment characteristics.

Microdata are the most detailed information available from a survey and are generally the responses to individual questions on the questionnaire or data derived from two or more questions.

Characterisics of Employment, 2014 to 2020

The Characteristics of Employment survey (COE) is conducted in August throughout Australia and is designed to provide statistics on weekly earnings of employees which shows: the distribution of weekly earnings of all wage and salary earners classified by full-time/part-time workers; and employment characteristics which presents data on trade union membership, fixed-term contracts, independent contractors, working arrangements, and employment found through a labour hire firm or employment agency, all of which can be cross classified by other employment characteristics such as hours worked, industry, occupation and sector of job as well as personal characteristics.

Microdata from the COE survey is released as a TableBuilder product. TableBuilder is an online tool for creating tables and graphs. Before applying for access, users should read and familiarise themselves with the information contained in the TableBuilder User Guide.

Historical microdata, 1998 to 2010

Prior to 2014, microdata relating to employment characteristics was released in a number of Confidentialised Unit Record Files (CURFs). These files are now available in ABS DataLab

Accessing the data

You can use this data in:
  • TableBuilder - online tool for creating tables and graphs.
  • DataLab - analyse detailed microdata

Compare access options to see what's right for you or Apply for access.

Further information about these products, and other information to assist users in understanding and accessing microdata in general, is available from the Microdata Entry Page.

Further Information

Further information about the survey and the microdata can be found in the various pages associated with this product, including:
  • Detailed lists of data items are available in the Downloads tab.
  • Other related products on the Related Information tab.


For further support in the use of this product, please contact Microdata Access Strategies on 02 6252 7714 or via microdata.access@abs.gov.au.


Data collected in the survey but not included in TableBuilder may be available from the ABS, on request, as statistics in tabulated form.

Subject to confidentiality and sampling variability constraints, special tabulations can be produced incorporating data items, populations and geographic areas selected to meet individual requirements. These are available, on request, on a fee for service basis. Contact the National Information and Referral Service at client.services@abs.gov.au or the Labour Statistics Branch at labour.statistics@abs.gov.au.


The ABS Privacy Policy outlines how the ABS handles any personal information that you provide to us.

Back to top of the page