The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is the principal Federal agency responsible for measuring labor market activity, working conditions, and price changes in the economy. It provides detailed information about employment, unemployment, occupations, and workers by conducting regular surveys across the country. As such, the BLS can support the tracking of various job measures over time and according to different geographical units (e.g., national, state, county, metropolitan statistical area, etc.).
Questions You Should Ask (and answer) When Looking for Employment Data:
- What is the geographical area I am looking for? Is it the state, the county, the metropolitan or micropolitan statistical area, or something else?
- What is time time period I am looking for, and what type of report should I use for comparisons? For example, you could compare annual average employment tables from year to year; or you could use a monthly employment report and compare it with the data for the same month in other years. - See the Tables for your options.
- When looking at employment data, should I be looking at aggregate (total) employment measures for a specific geographical area and time period, or should I break this down into employment by major industry sectors? - See the list of major industry sectors.