Daily Archives: December 11, 2013

County Monthly Workforce Trends

Goto ProximityOne  Keep up-to-date with current county monthly workforce patterns and trends using the CV APIGateway. Automatically updated with multi-sourced demographic-economic data, the APIGateway Integrated Profile (IP) provides monthly workforce updates from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Census of Employment and Wages (place of work data) and Local Area Unemployment Statistics (LAU – place of residence data). This section is focused on data and analytical tools to examine county workforce trends and patterns using the Local Area Unemployment Statistics data.

A unique and important property of the LAU data is that they are the only source of semi-official data available on a national scale for each/all counties and larger places providing current and monthly data on unemployment and the unemployment rate. The next runner-up to these estimates are the ACS 5 year estimates that are a) for a five year period and b) at least 3 years old (to the mid-point of the estimate period) when they become available. These highly perishable and time-sensitive economic measures are important to understanding the relative and absolute strength or weakness of workforce conditions and the employment sector on a local and regional basis.

The table presented below is a section taken from the APIGateway IP for Santa Clara County, CA (San Jose-Cupertino metro). The monthly/annual LAU data shown in the table are available for each/all counties. The APIGateway IP shows these four workforce series from 2011 forward. It auto-updates monthly with only a two-month lag to the reference time period. View a series as a chart: click graphic; on new page click a link shown in the table. Optionally set a wider time interval.
Santa Clara County, CA Monthly Labor Force Characteristics

Using GIS Resources for Visual Pattern Analysis
Separate from the APIGateway IP, the 2008-2012 annual time series data have been integrated into a U.S. by county shapefile. The graphic shown below illustrates how these tools can be used to examine the change in employment conditions by county since the recession started. This view shows the change in the unemployment rate from 2008 to 2012. Counties with red coloring experienced/are experiencing/ a 3-percent or more increase in the unemployment rate in 2012 compared to 2008. Using this measure alone, it is easy to see the extent to which the economy in many areas is still struggling to compensate for the recession impact and exactly which county/regional areas are impacted and how much. While one county might be prospering, many adjacent or nearby counties are not. View zoom-in to Santa Clara county area.

Interactive Table
Click the graphic shown below to use this interactive table to examine this same set of annual workforce data 2008-2012. Viewing the interactive table, click ShowAll button below table and then FindInName with default value “Santa Clara” to view the 5-year series for the same scope of subject matter as shown above in monthly form. The interactive table provides a convenient structure to view, rank, compare counties using these measures.


Next Steps
The U.S. by county shapefile with workforce data shown in the table and used to develop maps shown in this section are available to ProximityOne User Group members. (join now, no cost). Use these resources to develop wide-ranging variations of this view and analyze tabular data on your own computer; integrate your own data; add other types of geography; zoom-in to specific metros/regions. Visit the CountyTrends Web section for more information on county demographic-economic data and analytics.