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July 1 -- The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is soliciting comments by August 30, 2022 concerning the proposed extension of the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS).

The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) collects data on job vacancies, labor hires, and labor separations. As the monthly JOLTS time series grow longer, their value in assessing the business cycle, the difficulty that employers have in hiring workers, and the extent of the mismatch between the unused supply of available workers and the unmet demand for labor by employers will increase. The study of the complex relationship between job openings and unemployment is of particular interest to researchers. While these two measures are expected to move in opposite directions over the course of the business cycle, their relative levels and movements depend on the efficiency of the labor market in matching workers and jobs.

Along with the job openings rate, trends in hires and separations may broadly identify which aggregate industries face the tightest labor markets. The quits rate, the number of persons who quit during an entire month as a percentage of total employment, may provide clues about workers' views of the labor market or their success in finding better jobs. In addition, businesses will be able to compare their own turnover rates to the national, regional, and major industry division rates.

The BLS uses the JOLTS form to gather employment, job openings, hires, and total separations from business establishments. The information is collected once a month at the BLS Data Collection Center (DCC) in Atlanta, Georgia. The information is collected using Computer Assisted Telephone Interviewing (CATI), Web, email, and FAX. An establishment is in the sample for 36 consecutive months.

Office of Management and Budget clearance is being sought for the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS). The BLS is requesting an extension to the existing clearance for the JOLTS. There are no major changes being made to the forms, procedures, data collection methodology, or other aspects of the survey. Increasing public interest in the JOLTS Survey has led to the addition of state estimates and has broadened incorporation of JOLTS data in economic analyses conducted by Federal, State, and major economic research organizations.
There are 6 data elements collected by the form.  Those elements are Total Employment, Total Number of Job Openings, Total Hires, Quits, Layoffs and Discharges, and Other Separations. Quits, Layoffs and Discharges, and Other Separations comprise Total Separations.

The reference period for Total Employment is the pay period including the 12th of the month.  The reference period for Job Openings is the last business day of the month.  Hires and Separations are requested for the entire month.

The information is published monthly at the NAICS Supersector level for the U.S. and at the total non-agriculture level for the major Census regions.  The data are made public via press releases and the BLS website.  The data are used by BLS economists in their efforts to interpret and report labor market developments.  Businesses use the data to compare their own turnover rates to a national figure.  JOLTS data are useful to academics studying labor economics.  Policy analysts can use the data to track the business cycle.  

The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey measures the job openings, hires, total separations, quits, layoffs and discharges, and other separations for each month at the national level from a sample of about 20,700 establishments (worksites). The universe for this survey is the Quarterly Contribution Reports (QCR) filed by employers subject to State Unemployment Insurance (UI) laws. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) receives these QCR for the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW) program from the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The QCEW data, which are compiled for each calendar quarter, provide a comprehensive business name and address file with employment, wage, detailed geography (i.e., county), and industry information at the six-digit North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) level. This information is provided for over eight million business establishments of which about 8.1 million are in the scope of this survey. Similar data for Federal Government employees covered by the Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees program (UCFE) are also included. The final data is stored in a Longitudinal Data Base (LDB), which is then used as a sample frame for sample selection. Another data source used for sampling is the universe of railroad establishments obtained from the Federal Railroad Administration.

The JOLTS sample has about 20,700 establishments allocated based on the stratification of four census regions, 20 two-digit industry codes, and six employment size classes, including certainty establishments which have a certain level of employment, or the number of establishments in the universe for a sampling cell is less than or equal to 24. These certainty establishments are assigned a sampling weight of 1.00 and other establishments are assigned the sampling weight of the strata population count divided by the strata sample count.  

In addition to the annual sample, BLS added about 250 establishments in each of the three remaining quarters to represent newly formed businesses. The total sample size, therefore, is about 21,200 establishments. However, with a new sample selection every 1st quarter, the sample size is reduced to about 20,700 after discarding the out of business units not on the current frame.   
JOLTS webpage: https://www.bls.gov/jlt/
JOLTS 2022-2025 draft data collection instruments and technical documentation: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/ujzmqdzbcb0hlup/AACvN3zBp4yoTxHaejEisIxOa?dl=0
FRN: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2022-14075

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