|Quarterly Workforce Indicators (QWI) is a dataset of the Longitudinal Employer-Household Dynamics (LEHD) program,
part of the Center for Economic Studies at the U.S. Census Bureau.
The LEHD program combines federal, state and Census Bureau data on employers and employees under the Local Employment Dynamics (LED) Partnership.
The LED is a voluntary federal-state partnership that merges data from workers with data from employers to produce a collection of enhanced labor market statistics known collectively as Quarterly Workforce Indicators (QWI).
QWI are subject to strict protection of the identity and confidentiality of the individual respondents.
QWI are a set of 32 economic indicators including employment, job creation/destruction, wages, hires, and other measures of employment flows.
The QWI are reported based on detailed firm characteristics (geography, industry, age, size) and worker demographics (sex, age, education, race, ethnicity) and are available tabulated to state, metropolitan/micropolitan areas, county, and workforce investment areas (WIA).
The QWI are unique in their ability to track both firm and worker characteristics over time – enabling analyses such as a longitudinal look at wages by worker sex and age across counties, ranking job creation rates of young firms across NAICS industry groups, and comparing hiring levels by worker race and education levels across a selection of metropolitan areas.
QWI data can be accessed through the following tools:
Definitions and Technical Notes - Regions-WIB tables
Average Monthly Earnings
Average monthly earnings of employees with stable jobs (i.e., worked with the same firm throughout the quarter). Earnings data reflect the earnings of workers employed in both full-time and part-time jobs.
Industries with mostly part-time workers will likely show lower average monthly earnings than industries that employ mostly full-time workers. (QWI indicator: EarnS)
The earnings ratio shows female earnings as a percentage of male earnings. Average monthly earnings include both full-time and part-time employment,
so industries where part-time workers tend to be female will have a lower female-to-male earnings ratio, all other things being equal.
QWI earnings ratios differ from those based on the Current Population Survey (CPS) because CPS earnings are based on only full-time workers.
Estimate of the total number of jobs on the first day of the quarter, similar to point-in-time employment measures, such as the QCEW. Jobs is a count of full-time and part-time positions with employers that are covered by the Vermont Unemployment Compensation Law.
Not included are self-employed workers, most farm workers, workers of small non-profits, church workers, railroad workers, elected officials, officiers and family members of sole proprietorships or partnerships,
and student workers in a work-study or academic program. (QWI indicator: Emp)
Jobs is a count of positions, not people. For example, if an individual is employed at two different firms, two jobs will be counted.
Because of multiple job holders, the number of jobs is larger than the actual number of people working.
Appropriate interpretations of the data include the following:
"Educational services positions held by women made up 8.4% of all jobs."
"People between the ages of 25 and 34 held 19.6% of all jobs."
The rate at which stable jobs (i.e., employee worked for the same firm throughout the quarter) begin and end. Turnover is a measure of job stability and reflects the proportion of workers entering and leaving employment
during the period. Industries with a lower turnover rate are more likely to have stable employment. Certain age groups are, on average, more stable in terms of their job turnover rates. (QWI indicator: TurnOvrS)
Sources of Data
QWI data measures are based on states' Unemployment Insurance workers' earnings records and Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages establishment data, and U.S. Census Bureau data.
Because QWI are based on the mix of these sources, no measure is directly comparable with data from any of these individual sources.
Standards of Publication and Confidentiality
The Census Bureau and the state partners are required to protect the confidentiality of QWI data.
The approach to avoid disclosure of individual information is to either suppress the data or add statistical noise.
Statistical noise is a technique meaning the actual statistics are not shown if the numbers in a cell are small.
Rather, the statistics that are shown are "fuzzy", that is, close to the actual information but not exact.
Thus, the resulting data are less accurate than the full disclosure of exact data points (a complete census), but they are more accurate than the results of a survey based on a sample of the population.
Notations used in Regions-WIB tables:
- na - No data available in this category for this quarter.
- (c) - Value suppressed because it does not meet U.S. Census Buearu publication standards.
- * - Data significantly distorted, fuzzed value released.