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Occupational Requirements Survey

The Occupational Requirements Survey (ORS) is a survey conducted by the Bureau of Labor Statistics' (BLS) National Compensation Survey (NCS) program. The ORS provides job-related information regarding physical demands; environmental conditions; education, training, and experience; as well as cognitive and mental requirements for jobs in the U.S. economy.


what is it

Click the graphic to enlarge chart: what is ors.

why matters

Click the graphic to enlarge chart: why it matters.

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Latest Numbers

Physical demands of civilian workers

Sedentary work strength level 27.0% in 2019 Historical Data

Light work strength level 33.8% in 2019 Historical Data

Medium work strength level 28.5% in 2019 Historical Data

Heavy work strength level 9.3% in 2019 Historical Data

Very heavy work strength level 1.5% in 2019 Historical Data

Environmental conditions of civilian workers

Exposed to outdoors 33.4% in 2019 Historical Data

Quiet noise intensity level 14.2% in 2019 Historical Data

Moderate noise intensity level 76.9% in 2019 Historical Data

Loud noise intensity level 8.6% in 2019 Historical Data

Education, training, and experience of civilian workers

No minimum education requirement 31.0% in 2019 Historical Data

High school diploma education requirement 40.0% in 2019 Historical Data

Associate's degree education requirement 4.2% in 2019 Historical Data

Bachelor's degree education requirement 18.1% in 2019 Historical Data

Master's degree education requirement 2.6% in 2019 Historical Data

Professional degree education requirement 1.2% in 2019 Historical Data

Doctorate degree education requirement 0.5% in 2019 Historical Data

Cognitive and mental requirements of civilian workers

Interaction with the general public 75.3% in 2019 Historical Data

Varying work pace 61.1% in 2019 Historical Data

Telework available 9.2% in 2019 Historical Data

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News Releases

//ORS Test RM11512 10122021// Occupational Requirements in the United States


//ORS Test RM11512 10122021// A high school diploma was the minimum educational attainment required for X percent of civilian workers in 2016, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Minimum educational attainment is not required for Y percent of workers.

Next Release

The Occupational Requirements Survey (ORS) for 2021 is scheduled to be released on October 12, 2021 at 10:00 A.M. Eastern Time.


Beyond the Numbers

Beyond the Numbers article image

A look at teachers’ job requirements, employer costs, and benefits

In light of this traditional fall routine, this Beyond the Numbers article uses data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Occupational Requirements Survey (ORS) program and the National Compensation Survey (NCS) to explore the educational and physical requirements for teachers at different levels in the educational services industry. read more »