Cornell University

Catherwood Library

Catherwood Library, Ives Hall, 607-255-5435

Industrial Relations Overview of the U.S.

Introduction

This guide is intended to provide key links for a quick overview of issues, data, and developments in U.S. industrial relations. It is produced in cooperation with the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions as an aid to research in international and comparative studies. The resources listed are chosen because they are primarily free and authoritative. Other resources may be found by using the Research section of the Catherwood Library web site. The listing of sources is not comprehensive. It is simply a useful place to start.

[Please Note: BNA, Inc. produces the most often used reports analyzing collective bargaining and industrial relations developments in the United States. Among these reports are the Daily Labor Report and Negotiated Settlements Report, both of which are commercially produced and available in numerous libraries including this one. However, links to these items are not provided since access is restricted to locations paying for these services].

Further revised and updated by Stuart Basefsky, 11 November 2006
 

Starting Points

NLRB - National Labor Relations Board

http://www.nlrb.gov

The National Labor Relations Board is an independent federal agency created by Congress in 1935 to administer the National Labor Relations Act, the primary law governing relations between unions and employers in the private sector. The statute guarantees the right of employees to organize and to bargain collectively with their employers or to refrain from all such activity. Generally applying to all employers involved in interstate commerce--other than airlines, railroads, agriculture, and government--the Act implements the national labor policy of assuring free choice and encouraging collective bargaining as a means of maintaining industrial peace. Through the years, Congress has amended the Act and the Board and courts have developed a body of law drawn from the statute.

The following are key links that aid researchers in understanding U.S. Industrial Relations.

The primary web site for an overview begins with:

DOL: EMPLOYER Perspective

http://www.dol.gov/dol/audience/aud-employers.htm

This page provides a shortcut to information and services the Department of Labor (DOL) offers employers.
DOL: WORKER Perspective

http://www.dol.gov/dol/audience/aud-workers.htm

This page provides a shortcut to information and services the Department of Labor (DOL) offers for workers.
BLS: Archived News Releases

http://www.bls.gov/schedule/archives/all_nr.htm

Caution: data in many archived news releases have been revised in subsequent issues. See headings in this guide for coverage of specific topics.
BLS - Bureau of Labor Statistics

http://www.bls.gov/

The Bureau of Labor Statistics is the principal fact-finding agency for the Federal Government in the broad field of labor economics and statistics. 

For historical and chronological overviews by topics, see individual headings in this guide.

Economic Developments

BEA - Bureau of Economic Analysis

http://www.bea.gov/

The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) produces some of the most closely watched economic statistics that influence decisions of government officials, business people, and individuals.

CBO - Congressional Budget Office

http://www.cbo.gov/

The Congressional Budget Office is a small nonpartisan agency that produces policy analyses, cost estimates of legislation, and budget and economic projections that serve as a basis for the Congress's decisions about spending and taxes.
Economic Report of the President

http://www.gpoaccess.gov/eop/index.html

The Economic Report of the President is an annual report written by the Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors. It overviews the nation's economic progress using text and extensive data appendices. Current and previous years are provided.
OECD: Economic Surveys of the EURO Area (OECD Policy Brief)

http://www.oecd.org/document/48/0,2340,en_2649_34111_34289136_1_1_1_1,00.html

From the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Provides links to OECD Economic Surveys of the EURO Area. (For comparison with U.S.)
OECD: Economic Surveys of the United States (OECD Policy Brief)

http://www.oecd.org/document/5/0,2340,en_2649_34111_34356165_1_1_1_1,00.html

From the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).  Provides links to OECD Economic Surveys of the United States.
OECD: How does the United States Compare? (OECD Employment Outlook 2005)

http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/32/33/35051183.pdf

Comparison of unemployment in the United States with other highly industrialized countries.
CBO: Labor Publications

http://www.cbo.gov/publications/bysubject.cfm?cat=10

Labor publications, by year, issued by the CBO.
OECD: Employment Outlook 2006

http://www.oecd.org/document/53/0,2340,en_2649_201185_36837109_1_1_1_1,00.html

OECD Employment Outlook 2006 - Boosting Jobs and Income - Key reports on line. This is a key annual report produced by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (Paris). It is a major source for comparative information.

OECD: Employment Outlook (Previous Editions)

http://www.oecd.org/document/37/0,2340,en_2649_201185_31736485_1_1_1_1,00.html

Previous Issues of the OECD Employment Outlook appear on this page.
OECD - Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development, United States

http://www.oecd.org/country/0,3021,en_33873108_33873886_1_1_1_1_1,00.html

A one-stop-shop for OECD reports and statistics on the United States. Browse the documents in chronological order or by topic (e.g. economy, trade, development, environment, energy, social issues).
CBO: Projections of the Labor Force

http://www.cbo.gov/showdoc.cfm?index=5803&sequence=0

Published September 2004, this paper explains the assumptions behind the CBO’s projections of the labor force.
CBO: The Pros and Cons of Pursuing Free-Trade Agreements

http://www.cbo.gov/showdoc.cfm?index=4458&sequence=0

Published July 2003.
BLS: U.S. Economy at a Glance

http://www.bls.gov/eag/

Provides "Economy At A Glance" tables for national and regional data.
OECD: United States: External Links to Macroeconomic Reports and Data

http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/27/36/18634782.htm

Collection of links to U.S. macroeconomic information.

Political Developments

AFL-CIO: AFL-CIO Issues & Politics

http://www.aflcio.org/issues/

Current news and hot topics, arranged by issue, including: Jobs, Wages and the Global Economy, Retirement Security, Facts and Stats, and more.
CRS - Congressional Research Service (Open CRS)

http://www.opencrs.com/

The U.S. Congressional Research Service is where Members of Congress turn for confidential, nonpartisan research and analysis on a range of issues. CRS provides this information and analysis as an extension of, or supplement to, the Member's own office staff -- a relationship that affords CRS staff a level of access uncommon The U.S. Congressional Research Service is where Members of Congress turn for confidential, nonpartisan research and analysis on a range of issues. CRS provides this information and analysis as an extension of, or supplement to, the Member's own office staff -- a relationship that affords CRS staff a level of access uncommon to most other public policy groups in Washington. Currently, these materials are only available through third parties. For specific workplace information, see the specific section of KEY WORKPLACE DOCUMENTS that contains CRS materials.
Public Agenda Online

http://publicagenda.org/

Public Agenda provides unbiased research that bridges the gap between American leaders and what the public really thinks about issues ranging from education to foreign policy to immigration to religion and civility in American life.

Public Agenda Online: Issue Guides

http://publicagenda.org/citizen/issueguides/

Public Agenda Issue Guides are used by journalists, policy makers, teachers, students and citizens who want to better understand controversial topics.  They provide facts and figures, different perspectives and analysis of public attitudes from surveys conducted by Public Agenda and by other respected polling and news organizations.
THOMAS - Legislative Information on the Internet

http://thomas.loc.gov/

Thomas provides free access to a wide range of legislative information on the Congress, including the full text of the Congressional Record and bills for the 103rd to the present Congress, a directory of congressional committees and members of Congress, the weekly floor schedule for the House, and a schedule of daily committee hearings. Includes text of How Our Laws are Made by Edward F. Willett Jr.
THOMAS: Congressional Record

http://thomas.loc.gov/home/r109query.html

The Congressional Record is the official record of the proceedings and debates of the U.S. Congress.
Yahoo!: Directory on U.S. Political Issues

http://dir.yahoo.com/Government/U_S__Government/Politics/Political_Issues/

A convenient directory of web sites on diverse, sometimes controversial political issues (ex., death penality, race relations).  Use with caution, many of these sites represent one, sometimes an extreme, viewpoint.

Legislative Developments

BLS: Monthly Labor Review

http://www.bls.gov/opub/mlr/mlrhome.htm

Established in 1915, Monthly Labor Review is the principal journal of fact, analysis, and research from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, an agency within the U.S. Department of Labor. Each month, economists, statisticians, and experts from the Bureau join with private sector professionals and State and local government specialists to provide a wealth of research in a wide variety of fields—the labor force, the economy, employment, inflation, productivity, occupational injuries and illnesses, wages, prices, and many more.
BLS: Monthly Labor Review - Changes in Unemployment Insurance Legislation

http://www.bls.gov/opub/mlr/indexu.htm#Unemployment_insurance

Link to index page, scroll to Unemployment Insurance, list by year. See also Changes in Federal and State Unemployment Insurance Legislation in 2005;  Changes in Federal and State Unemployment Insurance Legislation in 2004 (pdf) and Changes in State Unemployment Insurance Legislation (2003).
BLS: Monthly Labor Review - Changes in Workers Compensation Laws

http://www.bls.gov/opub/mlr/indexw.htm#Workers'_compensation

Link to index page, scroll to Workers’ Compensation, list by year.  See also: Changes in worker’s compensation laws 2004 (pdf) and Changes in worker’s compensation laws 2003 (pdf).
BLS: Monthly Labor Review - State Labor Legislation

http://www.bls.gov/opub/mlr/indexs.htm#State_Government

Link to index page, scroll to State Government, State labor legislation, list by year.  See also: State Labor Legislation Enacted in 2007, 2006, 2005, and 2004 .
EEOC: The Digest of Equal Employment Opportunity Law

http://www.eeoc.gov/federal/digest.html

From the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, This publication includes feature articles on timely issues in equal employment opportunity law, as well as summaries of recent Commission decisions and federal court cases, as they affect Federal government employees.
SBA: Managing Employees

http://www.sba.gov/smallbusinessplanner/manage/manageemployees/index.html

Provides a basic understanding of the legal details involved in managing employees, including: hiring procedures, equal employment opportunity, wages, benefits, taxes, minors, privacy issues, and termination.

Collective Bargaining (Industrial Relations)

BLS: BLS Handbook of Methods: Collective Bargaining

http://www.bls.gov/opub/hom/homch8_g.htm

Chapter 8, Part 2 of the BLS Handbook of Methods is concerned with Collective Bargaining with explanations of:
Public File of Collective Bargaining Agreements
Work Stoppages
Analysis and Presentation
Technical References

DOL: LMRDA Reporting & Public Disclosure (OLMS)

http://www.dol.gov/esa/regs/compliance/olms/rrlo/lmrda.htm

From this site you can (1) view and print reports filed by unions, union officers and employees, employers, and labor relations consultants for the year 2000 and after and reports filed by unions for trusts in which they have an interest, (2) order reports for the year 1999 and prior, and (3) search the union annual financial reports for the year 2000 and after and the trust reports for key data items.
FMCS - Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service

http://www.fmcs.gov

The Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service (FMCS), created in 1947, is an independent agency whose mission is to preserve and promote labor-management peace and cooperation. Headquartered in Washington, DC, with two regional offices and more than 70 field offices, the agency provides mediation and conflict resolution services to industry, government agencies and communities.

FMCS: Annual Reports

http://www.fmcs.gov/internet/itemDetail.asp?categoryID=228&itemID=17315

Annual reports of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service (FMCS).
FMCS: Who We Are

http://www.fmcs.gov/internet/categoryList.asp?categoryID=13

Information about the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service (FMCS), history, news, and more.
GAO: Collective Bargaining Rights: Information on the Number of Workers with and without Bargaining Rights. GAO-02-835 September 13, 2002

http://digitalcommons.ilr.cornell.edu/key_workplace/113/

This report is designed to determine and assess (1) how many workers have statutory collective bargaining rights in the current civilian U.S. workforce, (2) the types and numbers of workers without such rights, (3) how the extent of collective bargaining rights among the workforce may have changed during the past 40 years and (4) the potential impact of two recent Supreme Court decisions—the Kentucky River and Hoffman Plastic cases—on the types and numbers of workers without collective bargaining rights.
NLRB - National Labor Relations Board

http://www.nlrb.gov

The National Labor Relations Board is an independent federal agency created by Congress in 1935 to administer the National Labor Relations Act, the primary law governing relations between unions and employers in the private sector.
NLRB: Frequently Asked Question Topics

http://nlrb.custhelp.com/cgi-bin/nlrb.cfg/php/enduser/std_alp.php

From the National Labor Relations Board, answers to frequently asked questions and ask a question form.

Union Density

BLS: Monthly Labor Review - Union Membership Statistics in 24 Countries

http://www.bls.gov/opub/mlr/2006/01/art3full.pdf

From the Monthly Labor Review, January 2006, Bureau of Labor Statistics by Jelle Visser, Scientific Director of the Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Labour Studies, University of Amsterdam, Netherlands.
BLS: Union Membership (Annual)

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/union2.toc.htm

Annual U.S. Union Member data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Department of Labor; 2005 (pdf); see also:  Archives – Union Members (Annual).
OLMS: Electronic Labor Organization Reporting System (eLORS)

http://erds.dol-esa.gov/query/query.do

Provided by the Office of Labor-Management Standards (OLMS), the Electronic Labor Organization Reporting System (eLORS) is explained here.
The following data were extracted on 2 November 2006 by
George Studds, Computer/IT Specialist, US DOL/ESA/OLMS/DPMT, 202.693.1245 ph, 202.693.1338 fax, e-mail: StuddsJr.George@dol.gov

1999
Reporting unions 1999 = 30,703
Reporting unions 1999 = 20,242 with membership of 200 or less

2006
Reporting unions 2006 = 25,351
Reporting unions 2006 = 15,269 with membership of 200 or less

Union Membership and Coverage Database (UnionStats.com)

http://www.unionstats.com/

The Union Membership and Coverage Database provides private and public sector labor union membership, coverage, and density estimates compiled from the Current Population Survey (CPS), a monthly household survey, using BLS methods.  Economy-wide estimates are provided beginning in 1973; estimates by state, detailed industry, and detailed occupation begin in 1983; and estimates by metropolitan area begin in 1986.  The Database, constructed by Barry Hirsch (Trinity University) and David Macpherson (Florida State University), is updated annually.

Pay Levels and Household Income

BLS: Employer Costs for Employee Compensation (Most Recent)

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/pdf/ecec.pdf

To see Union and Non-Union comparisons, go to Table 5. Employer costs per hour worked for employee compensation and costs as a percent of total compensation: Private industry workers, by major occupational group and bargaining unit status -- ARCHIVED RELEASES are found here.
BLS: National Compensation Survey

http://www.bls.gov/ncs/

This U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics survey of employee salaries, wages, and benefits replaces three previous BLS surveys (ECI, OCSP, EBS). The BLS recommends this survey for those who want wage estimates for pay setting purposes.

BLS: National Compensation Survey - Archived Data

http://www.bls.gov/ncs/ncspubs.htm#wages

National Compensation Survey Publication List by year.
BLS: National Compensation Survey - Customized Tables/Wage Database

http://data.bls.gov/PDQ/outside.jsp?survey=nc

The NCS Wage Query System presents mean hourly wage data for all workers in an occupation (private industry and State and local government combined). Currently, data may be obtained for over 85 specific geographical areas. Data are also available for the nation as a whole, and for its 9 broad geographic divisions.
BLS: Usual Weekly Earnings of Wage and Salary Workers

http://www.bls.gov/schedule/archives/wkyeng_nr.htm

From the Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Archived News Releases report the Usual Weekly Earnings of Wage and Salary Workers; available in text or pdf.
Census: Income

http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/income/income.html

Data and statistics on Income from the U.S. Census Bureau.

See:
Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States – U.S. Census Bureau: 2003, 2004, 2005

HHS: Poverty Guidelines, Research, and Measurement

http://aspe.hhs.gov/poverty/

From the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.

Women Workers

BLS: Highlights of Women's Earnings in 2005

http://www.bls.gov/cps/cpswom2005.pdf

This report presents earnings data from the Current Population Survey (CPS). The CPS is a national monthly survey of approximately 60,000 households conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau for the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  See also: Highlights of Women's Earnings in 2002 , 2003 and 2004
BLS: Women in the Labor Force: A Databook (May, 2005)

http://www.bls.gov/cps/wlf-databook2005.htm

From the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Department of Labor, this report presents historical and current labor force and earnings data for women and men from the Current Population Survey (CPS). The CPS is a national monthly survey of approximately 60,000 households conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau for the Bureau of Labor Statistics. See also: Women in the Labor Force: A Data Book February, 2004.
DOL: Women in the Labor Force 2005

http://www.dol.gov/wb/factsheets/Qf-laborforce-05.htm

Fact sheet on Women in the Labor Force in 2004 from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor.
DOL: Women's Bureau (Department of Labor)

http://www.dol.gov/wb/

The mission of the Women's Bureau is to promote profitable employment opportunities for women, to empower them by enhancing their skills and improving their working conditions and to provide employers with more alternatives to meet their labor needs.

Negotiated Wage Increases

BLS: Employer Costs for Employee Compensation (Most Recent)

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/pdf/ecec.pdf

To see Union and Non-Union comparisons, go to Table 5. Employer costs per hour worked for employee compensation and costs as a percent of total compensation: Private industry workers, by major occupational group and bargaining unit status -- ARCHIVED RELEASES are found here.
EBRI: Compensation Costs in Private and State/Local Public Sectors

http://www.ebri.org/pdf/publications/facts/0305fact.pdf

From the Employee Benefit Research Institute, FACTS from EBRI, published March 2005.  Includes Compensation Costs in Private Industry: March 1987-September 2004.
EPI: How Unions Help All Workers (Economic Policy Institute)

http://www.epinet.org/content.cfm/briefingpapers_bp143

Economic Policy Institute (EPI) Briefing Paper, August 2003, by Lawrence Mishel and Matthew Walters.  This report presents current data on unions' effect on wages, fringe benefits, total compensation, pay inequality, and workplace protections.

Benefits: Health & Pensions

BLS: National Compensation Survey: Employee Benefits in Private Industry in the United States, March 2006 [August 2006]

http://www.bls.gov/ncs/ebs/sp/ebsm0004.pdf

This summary presents NCS benefits data for:  Worker characteristics [union]; Establishment characteristics [size]; Geographic areas
DOL: Employee Benefits Security Administration

http://www.dol.gov/ebsa/

Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA), U.S. Department of Labor, protects the integrity of pensions, health plans, and other employee benefits for more than 150 million people.
DOL: Frequently Asked Questions about Pension Plans and ERISA (EBSA)

http://www.dol.gov/ebsa/FAQs/faq_compliance_pension.html

From the Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA), U.S. Department of Labor, information about the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, or ERISA.
EBRI: Frequently Asked Questions About Benefits (EBRI)

http://www.ebri.org/publications/benfaq/

From the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI), provides basic questions about major benefit issues and trends, with short, graphical answers, and links to the detailed data underlying the figure. In addition, references are provided to the relevant EBRI publication.
EBRI: Health Confidence Survey

http://www.ebri.org/surveys/hcs/

Since 1998, the Health Confidence Survey (HCS) has tracked a broad spectrum of health care issues, including Americans’ satisfaction with health care, their confidence in the health care system of today, the future of the health care system and the Medicare program, and their attitudes toward health care reform. The survey aims to be timely and comprehensive.
EBRI: Private Pension Plans, Participation, and Assets: Update (EPRI)

http://www.ebri.org/publications/facts/index.cfm?fa=0103fact

Facts from the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI), January 2003. (Data from tabulations of the U.S. Department of Labor's Form 5500)
FreeERISA.com

http://freeerisa.com/default.asp

FreeERISA.com is intended as a useful and free site where visitors may view retirement and welfare benefit information on the group or groups of their choice as this data appears on Form 5500 for free. (All 5500 forms filed with the United States Department of Labor under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) are open for public inspection).
KFF: Health Coverage & Costs (Kaiser Family Foundation)

http://www.kff.org/insurance/index.cfm

See specifically:
2004 Employer Health Benefits Survey
2005 Employer Health Benefits Survey
KFF: Health Coverage & the Uninsured (Kaiser Family Foundation)

http://www.kff.org/uninsured/index.cfm

The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation is a non-profit, private operating foundation focusing on the major health care issues facing the nation.

Working Hours

BLS: Current Employment Statistics

http://www.bls.gov/ces/home.htm

Each month the Current Employment Statistics (CES) program surveys about 160,000 businesses and government agencies, representing approximately 400,000 individual worksites, in order to provide detailed industry data on employment, hours, and earnings of workers on nonfarm payrolls.  Scroll down to see Employment Situation Summary and Benchmark Information.
BLS: Employer costs per hour worked for components of compensation 2004-2007

ftp://ftp.bls.gov/pub/special.requests/ocwc/ect/ececqrtn.pdf

 

BLS: Moonlighting (Multiple Jobholders)

http://www.ilr.cornell.edu/library/research/questionofthemonth/sep07.html

This source is a compilation of links to BLS data concerning moonlighting (a concept that refers to multiple jobholders or those who hold multiple jobs). For most current information, see Multiple jobholding in 2006
BLS: On the Decline in Average Weekly Hours Worked (Monthly Labor Review)

http://www.bls.gov/opub/mlr/2000/07/art3full.pdf

From the Monthly Labor Review, July 2000, by Katie Kirkland, Economist, Office of Employment and Unemployment Statistics, Bureau of Labor Statistics.
BLS: Productivity and Costs Data

http://www.bls.gov/lpc/

Two BLS programs develop productivity and cost data for elements of the U.S. economy, the Major Sector Productivity and Costs program and the Industry Productivity and Costs program. Indexes of labor productivity show changes in the ratio of output to hours of labor input. These measures are used in economic analysis, public and private policymaking and forecasting and analysis of prices, wages, and technological change.
BLS: Trends in Hours of Work Since the Mid-1970s

http://www.bls.gov/opub/mlr/1997/04/art1abs.htm

From the Monthly Labor Review, April 1997, this article examines trends in the average workweek and changes in the distribution of hours worked since the mid-1970s. It also focuses on estimates of annual work hours.
DOL: Work Hours

http://www.dol.gov/dol/topic/workhours/index.htm

General overview of Work Hours including the following related issues:  

Some KEY DATA on WORKING HOURS in the U.S.

http://iwsdninternational.blogspot.com/2007/11/iws-some-key-data-on-working-hours-in.html

This is a selection of Working Hours Data primarily from the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The Organization and Role of Social Partners

AFL-CIO - American Federation of Labor-Congress of Industrial Organizations

http://www.aflcio.org/

The American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) is a voluntary federation of 53 national and international labor unions.
The mission of the AFL-CIO is to improve the lives of working families—to bring economic justice to the workplace and social justice to our nation.
HR Policy Association

http://www.hrpolicy.org/

HR Policy Association brings together the chief human resource officers of more than 250 of the largest corporations in the United States. Representing nearly every major industry sector, HR Policy members have a combined market capitalization of more than $7.5 trillion and employ more than 18 million employees world wide. The association's mission is to assist large employers in using the collective leverage of the membership to further critically important business and societal objectives.
U.S. Chamber of Commerce

http://www.uschamber.com/default

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world’s largest business federation representing more than 3 million businesses of all sizes, sectors, and regions. It includes hundreds of associations, thousands of local chambers, and more than 100 American Chambers of Commerce in 91 countries.
United States Council for International Business

http://www.uscib.org/

The United States Council for International Business (USCIB) advances the global interests of American business both at home and abroad.  It is the American affiliate of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), the Business and Industry Advisory Committee (BIAC) to the OECD, and the International Organisation of Employers (IOE).  As such, it officially represents U.S. business positions both in the main intergovernmental bodies and vis-à-vis foreign business communities and their governments.  Contact them by e-mail info@uscib.org.

New Forms of Work

BLS: Working in the 21st Century - Department of Labor

http://www.bls.gov/opub/working/home.htm

Working in the 21st Century is a portrait of the U.S. workforce at the beginning of the New Millennium: a set of charts and related information about subjects ranging from education levels to retirement plans.
Futurework: Trends and Challenges for Work in the 21st Century - Department of Labor

http://digitalcommons.ilr.cornell.edu/key_workplace/65/

Labor Day, 1999, the U.S. Department of Labor assembled a comprehensive view of the world of work, where we have been, where we are today, and where we will find ourselves as we enter the next millennium.
RAND: 21st Century at Work: Forces Shaping the Future Workforce and Workplace in the United States

http://www.rand.org/pubs/monographs/2004/RAND_MG164.pdf

From the RAND Corporation under contract with the Department of Labor, published 17 February 2004, by Lynn A. Karoly and Constantijn W. A. Panis.
Standard of Living and Economic Performance - Sloan Foundation

http://www.sloan.org/programs/pg_standard.shtml

The goal is to understand better the basic forces affecting American economic progress and the U.S. standard of living in the increasingly competitive world economy.  The program is divided into the following areas:  Industry Studies; Business Organizations, Higher Education as an Industry; Marking Municipal Governments More Responsive to Their Citizens; Workplace, Workforce and Working Families.

Migration

Census: Geographical Mobility/Migration

http://www.census.gov/population/www/socdemo/migrate.html

From the U.S. Census Bureau, provides four unrelated sources of migration data: Current Population Survey, Survey of Income and Program Participation; Population Estimates and Projections; and information from the Decennial Census.

DHS: Immigration Statistics (Department of Homeland Security)

http://www.dhs.gov/ximgtn/statistics/

From the Office of Immigration Statistics, Departmetn of Homeland Security, data and statistics.
Managing Mexican Migration to the United States: Recommendations for Policymakers

http://www.csis.org/component/option,com_csis_pubs/task,view/id,1063

(April 2004)

A Report of the U.S.-Mexico Binational Council Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México (ITAM), published April 1, 2004.

Migration Information Source

http://www.migrationinformation.org/index.cfm

From the Migration Policy Institute, The Migration Information Source provides fresh thought, authoritative data from numerous global organizations and governments, and global analysis of international migration and refugee trends. A unique, online resource, the Source offers useful tools, vital data, and essential facts on the movement of people worldwide.  An example of documentation at this site is the following: Remittances from the United States in Context by Kevin O'Neil, Migration Policy Institute, June 1, 2003.
Regional Patterns of International Migration: North American Present and Future

http://www.jil.go.jp/foreign/event_r/event/documents/2004sopemi/2004sopemi_e_session1.pdf

Keynote report, 9 January, 2004, by Philip Martin, Professor Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, The University of California, Davis.

Pensions & Retirement

EBRI: FAQs About Benefits-Retirement Issues (EBRI)

http://www.ebri.org/publications/benfaq/dis_retfaq.cfm

From the Employee Benefit Research Institute, Benefit FAQs.
GAO: Pensions Plans: Characteristics of Persons in the Labor Force Without Pension Coverage

http://www.gao.gov/archive/2000/he00131.pdf

From the U.S. Government Accountability Office (then the General Accounting Office), published August 2000.
GAO: Private Pensions: Multiemployer Plans Face Short- and Long-Term Challenges

http://www.gao.gov/new.items/d04423.pdf

Published by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (then the General Accounting Office), March 2004.
Is the Pension System a Liability?

http://www.dallasfed.org/research/swe/2004/swe0405b.html

Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, Southwest Economy, Issue 5, September/October 2004 [1 October 2004].

Older Workers

AARP: Best Employers for Workers Over 50

http://www.aarp.org/money/careers/employerresourcecenter/bestemployers/

List of companies named the Best Employers in American for people over 50 by AARP.
AARP: Employer Resource Center

http://www.aarp.org/money/careers/employerresourcecenter/

Features research and data, along with tools and strategies for attracting and retaining valuable older workers.
Census: Profile of Older Workers (Census Bureau)

http://lehd.did.census.gov/led/library/profiles_2007.html

The Profile area contains links to the "Older Worker" series of publications. Thirty states have partnered with Longitudinal Employer-Household Dynamics, U.S. Census Bureau, to develop this timely series.
ILR School (Cornell): What do we know about OLDER WORKERS in the United States and how does this compare to other countries? (Catherwood Library)

http://www.ilr.cornell.edu/library/research/questionofthemonth/junjul04.html

Catherwood Library, Reference Question of the Month, June/July 2004.

Relocation of Production & Industrial Relations

Brookings: Fairer Deal For America's Workers in a New Era of Offshoring

http://www.brookings.edu/es/commentary/journals/tradeforum/2005btf_brainard.pdf

From the Brookings Institution, by Lael Brainard, Robert E. Litan, and Nicholas Warren, September 14, 2005.
Brookings: Globalization and the Offshoring of Services: The Case of India

http://www.brookings.edu/press/books/abstracts/TradeForum/200507.pdf

By Rafiq Dossani, Stanford University, Brookings Trade Forum 2005.
Brookings: Services Offshoring, American Jobs, and the Global Economy

http://www.brookings.edu/views/articles/2005winter_brainardlitan.htm

From the Brookings Institution, by Lael Brainard and Robert E. Litan, Perspectives on Work, Winter 2005.
Offshoring (a.k.a. Offshore Outsourcing) and Job Insecurity Among U.S. Workers (CRS)

http://digitalcommons.ilr.cornell.edu/key_workplace/241/

From the Congressional Research Service (CRS), by Linda Levine, Updated May 2, 2005.
Outsourcing and Insourcing Jobs in the U.S. Economy: An Overview of Evidence Based on Foreign Investment Data

http://digitalcommons.ilr.cornell.edu/key_workplace/243/

Congressional Research Service (CRS), by James K. Jackson, updated May 6, 2005.
Variation in Property Tax Abatement Programs Among States

http://youngphillypolitics.com/files/uploads/Indiana%20Univ%20Natl%20Tax%20Abatement%20Study%202005.pdf

Published in Economic Development Quarterly, Vol. 19, No. 2, May 2005, by Esteban G. Dalehite, John L. Mikesell, and C. Kurt Zorn.

Minimum Wage

BLS: Characteristics of Minimum Wage Workers: 2005

http://www.bls.gov/cps/minwage2005.htm

Also in PDF for 2005

BLS: Contract Escalation

http://www.bls.gov/ncs/ect/escalation.htm

From the Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, the Employment Cost Index (ECI) is increasingly being used by business organizations as an escalator to adjust long-term sales and purchasing contracts, and to adjust wage rates in collective bargaining agreements. A web page explaining how to use the ECI for escalating contracts is available.
BLS: Employer Costs for Employee Compensation

http://www.bls.gov/schedule/archives/ecec_nr.htm

The ECEC is a quarterly survey that shows the employers' average hourly cost for total compensation and its components.

CRS: Historical Relationship Between the Minimum Wage and Poverty, 1959 to 2005

http://digitalcommons.ilr.cornell.edu/key_workplace/260/

From the Congressional Research Service (CRS),Tom Gabe, 5 July 2005.
CRS: Minimum Wage, Overtime Pay, and Child Labor Inventory of Proposals in the 109th Congress to Amend the Fair Labor Standards Act

http://digitalcommons.ilr.cornell.edu/key_workplace/240/

From the Congressional Research Service (CRS), William G. Whittaker, 4 May 2005.
CRS: The Fair Labor Standards Act: Minimum Wage in the 108th Congress

http://digitalcommons.ilr.cornell.edu/key_workplace/199/

From the Congressional Research Service (CRS), William G. Whittaker, updated 7 February 2005; includes historical and policy perspectives.
DOL: Minimum Wage

http://www.dol.gov/dol/topic/wages/minimumwage.htm

General overview and links to Department of Labor information on minimum wage.
DOL: Minimum Wage Laws in the States

http://www.dol.gov/esa/minwage/america.htm

From the Department of Labor, click on any state or jurisdiction to find out about applicable minimum wage laws.
EPI: Living Wage (Employment Policy Institute)

http://www.epionline.org/index_lw.cfm

The Employment Policies Institute is a non-profit research organization dedicated to studying public policy issues surrounding employment growth.  The living wage movement advocates local government wage mandates, called living wage ordinances (LWOs), applicable particularly to government contractors and employers receiving government subsidies or financial aid.
EPI: Minimum Wage (Employment Policy Institute)

http://www.epionline.org/index_mw.cfm

The Employment Policies Institute is a non-profit research organization dedicated to studying public policy issues surrounding employment growth. In particular, EPI focuses on issues that affect entry-level employment. Provides links to press releases, studies, statistics, calculator, research, and links.

SMEs (Small and Medium-sized Enterprises)

BLS: Business Employment Dynamics

http://www.bls.gov/bdm/

Business Employment Dynamics is a set of statistics generated from the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages, or ES-202, program. These quarterly data series consist of gross job gains and gross job losses statistics from 1992 forward. These data help to provide a picture of the dynamic state of the labor market -- by Firm Size.
BLS: National Compensation Survey: Employee Benefits in Private Industry in the United States, March 2006 [August 2006]

http://www.bls.gov/ncs/ebs/sp/ebsm0004.pdf

This summary presents NCS benefits data for:  Worker characteristics [union]; Establishment characteristics [size]; Geographic areas
Census: County Business Patterns 2004 by Employment Size

http://factfinder.census.gov/servlet/IBQTable?_bm=y&-ds_name=CB0400A2

This link takes one to the American Fact Finder produced by the U.S. Census and a particular set of tables that provide the number of employees by establishment size. It provides U.S. totals as well as data by county.
Click for APPAREL MANUFACTURING 2004. For TREND DATA for APPAREL and a CHART (figure 2, page 7) as well as an Industry Overview and a 1997 & 2002 COMPARISON (NAICS 315), these links my be useful. For ACCOMMODATION & FOOD SERVICES 2004 (NAICS 72), this link provides employees by establishment size data.
Census: Establishment and Firm Size 2002 - Accommodation and Food Services

http://www.census.gov/prod/ec02/ec0272sssz.pdf

The Accommodation and Food Services sector (NAICS 72) comprises establishments providing customers with lodging and/or preparing meals, snacks, and beverages for immediate consumption. For a 1997 & 2002 COMPARISON see this link.
DOL: elaws--FirstStep Employment Law Advisor

http://www.dol.gov/elaws/FirstStep/

The FirstStep Employment Law Advisor is designed to help employers determine which laws administered by the Department of Labor (DOL) apply to their business or organization and to provide links to information about how to comply with these laws. Please note that the FirstStep Employment Law Advisor provides information about federal DOL requirements only.
EBRI: EBRI Databook, Chapter 4, Participation in Employee Benefit Programs

http://www.ebri.org/pdf/publications/books/databook/DB.Chapter%2004.pdf

Produced by the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI), this chapter of the EBRI Databook on Employee Benefits provides data on the percentage of full-time and part-time employees participating in employee benefit programs by size of establishment.

EEOC: Overview of the EEOC and Small Business

http://www.eeoc.gov/employers/overview.html

The following questions are addressed:
What laws does the EEOC enforce and do they apply to my business? How do I determine if a business of my size is covered by the EEO laws? Who may file a charge of discrimination with the EEOC? When can a charge of discrimination be filed? Can a small business resolve a charge without undergoing an investigation or facing a lawsuit?

EIRO: Definition: Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (European Industrial Relations Dictionary)

http://www.eurofound.eu.int/areas/industrialrelations/dictionary/definitions/SMALLANDMEDIUMSIZEDENTERPRISE.htm

From the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions.
Firm Size Wage Gaps, Job Responsibility, and Hierarchical Matching

http://home.uchicago.edu/~fox/jole_fox_firm_size.pdf

This article by Jeremy T. Fox, University of Chicago, appears in the Journal of Labor Economics, 2009, Vol. 27, No. 1.

OLMS: Electronic Labor Organization Reporting System (eLORS)

http://erds.dol-esa.gov/query/query.do

Provided by the Office of Labor-Management Standards (OLMS), the Electronic Labor Organization Reporting System (eLORS) is explained here.
The following data were extracted on 2 November 2006 by
George Studds, Computer/IT Specialist, US DOL/ESA/OLMS/DPMT, 202.693.1245 ph, 202.693.1338 fax, e-mail: StuddsJr.George@dol.gov

1999
Reporting unions 1999 = 30,703
Reporting unions 1999 = 20,242 with membership of 200 or less

2006
Reporting unions 2006 = 25,351
Reporting unions 2006 = 15,269 with membership of 200 or less

RAND: Are Small Businesses Riskier Than Larger Ones? [2006]

http://www.rand.org/pubs/research_briefs/2006/RAND_RB9181.pdf

Conclusions and Policy Options
Although the study shows that, within a given firm, smaller establishments are riskier than larger establishments, the research also indicates that small, single-establishment firms are among the safer workplaces. The reasons for this “protective effect” are unclear, although it is possible that the presence of an owner onsite may help to improve safety. The relatively good record at small single-establishment firms may justify lighter regulatory interventions there than at small and medium-sized firms with multiple establishments.
SBA: Firm Size Data

http://www.sba.gov/advo/research/data.html

From the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), this site provides data on businesses with and without employees. These are referred to as "employer firms" and "nonemployer firms."
SBA: Frequently Asked Questions

http://web.sba.gov/faqs/faqIndexAll.cfm?areaid=24

There is a PDF Version of these questions as well. The Small Business Administration (SBA) provides the most recently gathered information on these issues of statistics and research.

SBA: Size Standards

http://www.sba.gov/services/contractingopportunities/sizestandardstopics/index.html

Answers what numerical definition should SBA use to define small businesses, industry by industry, to determine what businesses are eligible for SBA's programs. In additon, all federal agencies must use SBA's size standards for its Federal Government contracts it identifies as a small business.  Agencies must also use SBA's size standards for their other programs and regulations, unless they are authorized by Federal statute to use something else.
SBA: Small Business Size Regulations

http://www.sba.gov/library/cfrs/13cfr121.pdf

Click here for an experimental, more current version of the regulations
13 CFR Sec. 121 -- Small Business Size Regulations 
SBA: The Impact of Regulatory Costs on Small Firms [September 2005]

http://www.sba.gov/advo/research/rs264tot.pdf

The report divides federal regulations into four categories: economic, workplace, environmental, and tax compliance.
SBA: The Small Business Economy for Data Year 2005: A Report to the President

http://www.sba.gov/advo/research/sb_econ2006.pdf

From the Small Business Administration (SBA), this is an annual reference source on small business' performance in the economy. Historical versions from 1996-2005 are available.

Telework

A Guide to Telework in the Federal Government

http://www.opm.gov/pandemic/agency2a-guide.pdf

From the Office of Personnel Management and the General Services Information.
EEOC: Work At Home/Telework as a Reasonable Accommodation

http://www.eeoc.gov/facts/telework.html

From the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
Telework Overview (GSA)

http://www.gsa.gov/Portal/gsa/ep/contentView.do?contentType=GSA_OVERVIEW&contentId=9780&noc=T

From the U.S. General Services Administration, Teleworking, sometimes called telecommuting or flexiplace, is an innovative business solution that enables employees to do productive work away from the traditional office. Features related government and non-government telework links.
Telework.gov

http://www.telework.gov/

The Office of Personal Management and the General Services Administration have established this joint web site on Telework to provide access to guidance issued by both agencies. Here you will find information for employees who think they might like to telecommute (or are already doing so), for managers and supervisors who supervise teleworkers, and for agency telework coordinators.

Temporary Service Work

ASA: American Staffing 2006: Annual Economic Analysis

http://www.americanstaffing.net/statistics/pdf/American%20Staffing%202006.pdf

Issued by the American Staffing Association (ASA), this annual economic analysis of American staffing companies' placement of temporary and contract workers provides one of the best overviews of this industry.
BLS: Contingent and Alternative Employment Arrangements, February 2005

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/pdf/conemp.pdf

The analysis in this release focuses on the broadest estimate of contingent workers--all those who do not expect their current job to last. The is also an HTML Version of this document.

BLS: Employment Services

http://www.bls.gov/oco/cg/cgs039.htm

Taken from the Career Guide to Industries 2006-07 Edition, this overview of Employment Services [Temporary Agency Work] includes Nature of the Industry; Working Conditions;  Employment; Occupations in the Industry;  Training and Advancement; Outlook; Earnings; and  Sources of Additional Information
GAO: Employment Arrangements: Improved Outreach Could Help Ensure Proper Worker Classification, GAO-06-656, July 11, 2006

http://www.gao.gov/new.items/d06656.pdf

Government Accountability Office (GAO)
Abstract:
Millions of U.S. workers participate in "contingent" employment, such as temporary or part-time work, and not in permanent or full-time jobs. The Department of Labor (DOL) enforces several labor laws to protect these and other workers, including the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), which provides minimum wage, overtime pay, and child labor protections. In June 2000, GAO reported that contingent workers lagged behind standard full-time workers in terms of income, benefits, and workforce protections, and that some employees do not receive worker protections because employers misclassified them as independent contractors. GAO was asked to update this report by describing (1) the size and nature of the contingent workforce, (2) the benefits and workforce protections provided to contingent workers, and (3) the actions that DOL takes to detect and address employee misclassification. We analyzed DOL survey data on contingent workers and interviewed DOL officials.

Comparative Studies

BLS: Foreign Labor Statistics

http://www.bls.gov/fls/

From the Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, the Foreign Labor Statistics (FLS) program provides international comparisons of hourly compensation costs; productivity and unit labor costs; labor force, employment and unemployment rates; and consumer prices. The comparisons relate primarily to the major industrial countries, but other countries are included in certain measures.
DOL: Chartbook of International Labor Comparisons: The Americas, Asia, Europe (DOL)

http://digitalcommons.ilr.cornell.edu/key_workplace/606/

From the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Policy, U.S. Department of Labor, this Chartbook of International Labor Comparisons provides a comparative labor market perspective—including employment levels, jobless rates, hours worked, labor costs, and productivity trends.
DOL: Foreign Labor Trends (ILAB)

http://www.dol.gov/ILAB/media/reports/flt/main.htm

From the Bureau of International Labor Affairs, U.S. Department of Labor, the Foreign Labor Trends (FLT) report series is designed to be an informative and authoritative source of information on labor institutions, practices, and recent key developments in the countries reported.
EIRO: Comparative Information: Annual Reviews (EIRO Online)

http://www.eiro.eurofound.eu.int/annualreports.html

From the European Industrial Relations Observatory (EIRO) provides reports on global industrial relations, along with national reports.

Related Guides

Research Help

Related ILR School Pages