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InGRID Expert Workshop New skills for new jobs: Tools for harmonising the measurement of occupations AIAS Amsterdam, 10 -12 February 2014 The design principles.

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Presentation on theme: "InGRID Expert Workshop New skills for new jobs: Tools for harmonising the measurement of occupations AIAS Amsterdam, 10 -12 February 2014 The design principles."— Presentation transcript:

1 InGRID Expert Workshop New skills for new jobs: Tools for harmonising the measurement of occupations AIAS Amsterdam, February 2014 The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally David Hunter, Department of Statistics International Labour Office The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

2 International Standard Classification of Occupations 2008 (ISCO-08) Endorsed by the ILO Governing Body in 2008 i t is known as ISCO-08 and replaces ISCO-88 Structure, group definitions and correspondence with ISCO-88 available on ILO Website or on request Published in English –And in French, Spanish, Arabic and Russian as soon as possible Index of occupational titles will be available very soon Used in European Union (EU) collections from 2010 Structure is available in all EU languages from Eurostat –Eurostat Web discussion forum to support implementation is available to all countries Hierarchically structured classification comprising: –10 major groups –43 sub-major groups –130 minor groups –436 unit groups The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

3 What is ISCO used for? International reporting, comparison and exchange of statistical and administrative data on occupation A model for the development of national and regional classifications of occupations Used directly in countries that have not developed their own national classifications The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

4 Uses of occupation classifications Statistics from censuses, household surveys, employer surveys and other sources (big data?). Detailed observations about jobs are organized into meaningful and useful groups for analysis Administrative and policy-related activities matching job seekers with job vacancies educational planning management of employment related international migration Providing statistics on job seekers and job vacancies numbers of places and enrolments in training programmes Migrant and expatriate labour Employment numbers, wages, hours worked etc. The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

5 Underlying concepts –ISCO-08 Job : a set of tasks and duties performed, or meant to be performed, by one person including for an employer or in self employment. Occupation: a set of jobs whose main tasks and duties are characterised by a high degree of similarity: –A person may be associated with an occupation through the main job currently held, a second job, or a job previously held Occupations are organized into groups according to skill level and skill specialization: –Skill level is applied mainly at the top (major group) level of the classification. –Within each major group occupations are arranged into unit groups, minor groups and sub-major groups, primarily on the basis of aspects of skill specialization. The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

6 Skill – the ability to carry out the tasks and duties of a job Skill level: the complexity and range of tasks and duties performed in an occupation: –Measured operationally by considering: The nature of the work performed in an occupation in relation to the characteristic tasks and duties defined for each ISCO-08 skill level (new for ISCO-08) And/or The level of formal education The amount of informal on-the-job training and/or previous experience in a related occupation required for competent performance of the tasks and duties Skill specialization the field of knowledge required the tools and machinery used the materials worked on or with the kinds of goods and services produced. The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

7 Table 1: Mapping of ISCO-08 major groups to skill levels The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

8 Sub-major groups in Major group 2, Professionals The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

9 22 Health professionals 221 Medical doctors 2211Generalist medical practitioners 2212Specialist medical practitioners 222 Nursing and midwifery professionals 2221Nursing professionals 2222Midwifery professionals 223Traditional and complementary medicine professionals 2230 Traditional and complementary medicine professionals 224Paramedical practitioners 2240Paramedical practitioners 225 Veterinarians 2250Veterinarians 226 Other health professionals 2261Dentists 2262Pharmacists 2263Environmental and occupational health and hygiene professionals 2264Physiotherapists 2265Dieticians and nutritionists 2266Audiologists and speech therapists 2267Optometrists and ophthalmic opticians 2269Health professionals not elsewhere classified The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

10 32 Health associate professionals 321Medical and pharmaceutical technicians 3211Medical imaging and therapeutic equipment technicians 3212Medical and pathology laboratory technicians 3213Pharmaceutical technicians and assistants 3214Medical and dental prosthetic technicians 322Nursing and midwifery associate professionals 3221Nursing associate professionals 3222Midwifery associate professionals 323Traditional and complementary medicine associate professionals 3230Traditional and complementary medicine associate professionals 324Veterinary technicians and assistants 3240Veterinary technicians and assistants 325Other health associate professionals 3251Dental assistants and therapists 3252Medical records and health information technicians 3253Community health workers 3254Dispensing opticians 3255Physiotherapy technicians and assistants 3256Medical assistants 3257Environmental and occupational health inspectors and associates 3258Ambulance workers 3259Health associate professionals not elsewhere classified The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

11 Models for developing or adapting national classifications based on ISCO Adopt ISCO directly for national use –Much less than ideal –Some small countries with limited resources have no other choice –Collaborating with similar neighbouring countries may be an option Adapt ISCO to suit national circumstances –A popular choice –May start from scratch –One or more classifications may already be used in the country National occupation classification is not based on ISCO –A common situation for countries with own tradition or history of occupation classification –May make adjustments to national classification to improve comparability with ISCO or take advantages of new features in ISCO The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

12 Adapting ISCO to suit national circumstances: starting from scratch or from an existing national classification Decide at what level of ISCO-08 you will provide internationally comparable data (Eg 3 or 4 digits) Collapse ISCO categories that are too detailed for national requirements –Eg by making a minor group into a unit group. Create more detailed categories where needed to suit national labour market, user requirements: –For example by adapting the 4 th level or creating a 5 th level Adjust the classification code structure as needed while maintaining correspondence table with ISCO-08 and old classification Develop or update national index of occupation titles containing new and old national and ISCO codes (2, 3 or 4 code sets may be needed) Develop definitions of new or changed categories Review and amend ISCO-08 definitions to ensure national relevance –Eg lists of included occupations The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

13 Occupation – information needed for coding For accurate coding to any level of ISCO (and related national classifications) information is needed on: –Name or title of occupation –Main tasks or duties usually performed in the job The following may information may also be useful –The type of economic activity of the establishment (industry) –Whether or not the main aim of the activity is own consumption (subsistence) Information about the level of skill or qualifications of an individual is not necessary and not useful The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

14 Occupation – single open-ended questions A single question such as: a)What is the main occupation of (the person) in this workplace? b)What kind of work did (the person) do? may provide adequate information from some but not all respondents –But may yield responses such as Manager, Consultant, Farm work that can not be coded accurately to any level of ISCO Interviewers need to be trained to probe when information provided is insufficient The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

15 Occupation – multiple open- ended questions Use of separate questions on job title and tasks performed generally assures that sufficient detail is provided Asking for two different types of information helps the respondent to respond fully, for example: Title: Sales manager Tasks: Selling used cars Title: Customer service consultant Tasks: Selling used cars The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

16 Questions recommended for testing and adaptation at national level In the main job held last week what was your work or occupation? Please give full job title and be specific, for example: Fruit picker, Legal secretary, Restaurant manager, Secondary school teacher, Cattle farmer, Registered nurse ………………………………………………………………………………… ……………………………………………………………………… What are your main tasks or duties in that job? Please give details, for example: Picking and carrying oranges and peaches, Preparing legal documents, Managing the operations of a restaurant, Teaching mathematics, Managing a cattle farm, Caring for the sick and administering medications ………………………………………………………………………………… ……………………………………………………………………………… ……………………………………………………………………………… …… The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

17 Coding occupational data in household surveys Responses to open ended questions have to be assigned to the appropriate category in an occupation classification Responses to questions on occupation (title and tasks), industry and name and address of workplace are relevant Coding should be done using and index of occupations – Mapping directly to the classification is error prone and inefficient Aim of the coding process is to determine and record correctly to which of the categories in the occupation classification the jobs belong at the most detailed level possible on the basis of the information provided in the responses The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

18 Sources of information for constructing and updating an occupation coding index –Reviews of responses from recent survey operations and census tests –Job vacancy reviews (newspapers, internet, employment services) –Full-scale job monitoring exercises –ISCO index may be a good starting point in the absence of any national index or a useful source to assess completeness of a national index –Do neighbouring countries with similar languages have indexes that could be shared or adapted? –Index needs to reflect language used in the national context in response to questions in statistical collections and administrative forms The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

19 At what level of the classification should responses be coded? It is sometimes decided to code to an aggregate level of ISCO (Eg 2 or 3-digit level of ISCO) –Perceived cost of coding in terms of errors and staff hours –Concern that responses may not be codable to detailed groups –In sample surveys the detailed results may not be publishable BUT –Information is unnecessarily lost –limits options for tabulation, international reporting Experience of statistical agencies has shown that –Costs of coding to a larger number of categories are small –Error rates do not significantly increase and may improve for aggregate groups –Many responses support detailed coding, while some do not The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

20 Coding of vague and difficult responses Some responses may be too vague and imprecise to allow the coder to determine to which category the job belongs –These responses should be coded to the level in the classification structure supported by the information contained in them –should not be forced into any particular detailed category where only a small proportion of the jobs would fall if the responses were adequate. –Residual groups (not elsewhere classified) should not be used for vague responses –A common method of dealing with this type of response is to provide entries in the coding index for commonly occurring vague responses –Such responses are assigned the code for the relevant higher category, followed by trailing zeros. responses can be allocated proportionally to the more detailed categories in a transparent manner or they can be released in publications labelled as : Group name not further defined The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

21 Occupation title: Sales Tasks performed: Selling 52Sales workers 5200 Sales workers not further defined 521Street and market salespersons 5211Stall and market salespersons 5212Street food salespersons 522Shop salespersons 5221Shopkeepers 5222Shop supervisors 5223Shop sales assistants 523Cashiers and ticket clerks 5230Cashiers and ticket clerks 524Other sales workers 5241Fashion and other models 5242Sales demonstrators 5243Door to door salespersons 5244Contact centre salespersons 5245Service station attendants 5246Food service counter attendants 5249Sales workers not elsewhere classified The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

22 Automatic and computer assisted coding Both approaches use computing power to speed up process of searching an index, identifying matching responses, following coding rules and recording the correct code In Computer assisted coding (CAC) the coder enters a small number of characters from key and qualifying words –Matching index entries are displayed and coder selects matching entry –Correct code is recorded by coder or the computer or a query is raised In automatic coding (AC) responses are key entered or captured electronically, then matched automatically by the computer –Match rates of up to 70% have been achieved –Remaining entries are coded using CAC –Requires a high degree of sophistication and a very well designed index Software solutions are available at low cost but cost of integration into larger processing systems may be high The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally

23 Summary – challenges for achieving globally comparable occupational data Different countries use different classification systems, based (or not) on different versions of ISCO Within countries different classification systems may be used for different applications –Big data may make this worse while making more information available Varying quality of occupational information collected on statistical and administrative forms Multiple approaches to coding occupational data (index and procedures) Difficulty in achieving international consistency due to linguistic differences Technological solutions (CAC, AC, OCR) can improve consistency –May lead to systematic error if badly implemented –Difficult for less developed countries to use Need for coordination and leadership from national statistical offices and international institutions Different countries use different classification systems, based (or not) on different versions of ISCO Within countries different classification systems may be used for different applications –Big data may make this worse while making more information available Varying quality of occupational information collected on statistical and administrative forms Multiple approaches to coding occupational data (index and procedures) Difficulty in achieving international consistency due to linguistic differences Technological solutions (CAC, AC, OCR) can improve consistency –May lead to systematic error if badly implemented –Difficult for less developed countries to use Need for coordination and leadership from national statistical offices and international institutions The design principles of ISCO-08: Challenges for coding occupations globally


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