Document Type

Article

Publication Date

4-30-2008

Abstract

From the Department of Labor, the best survey for flexibility data comes from the Current Population Survey (CPS). The CPS is a monthly survey of 60,000 households that provides data on the labor force, employment, unemployment, and persons not in the labor force.

The benefit of the CPS is that it is large, reliable, and the sample is carefully weighted to provide nationally representative estimates. It also has a significant amount of other data, including a large amount of information on employee characteristics, occupation and industry classifications, and work schedules. The drawbacks however, are that the questions on flexibility are limited in number and scope -- providing data that answers only a few of the questions on workers’ access to and use of flexible work arrangements. The use of work schedule data is particularly problematic because it is often unclear whether the schedule is directed by the worker, the employer, or a combination of both.

This fact sheet provides information about several studies from nongovernmental sources that also provide useful information about flexible work arrangements.

Comments

Prepared for Workplace Flexibility 2010 by Shelley Waters Boots and Anna Danziger on behalf of the Urban Institute.