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Occupational Requirements Survey

The Occupational Requirements Survey (ORS) is a product of the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). 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.


  • Implementing the 2018 SOC and changes to occupational detail available Read More »
  • Link to notice on the BLS page of impact on COVID-19 on ORS. Read More »


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

In 2019, about 75% of civilian workers were required to interact with the general public


Interaction with the general public was required for 75.3 percent of civilian workers. In office and administrative support occupations, 86.5 percent of workers were required to interact with the general public and 10.2 percent of workers in production occupations had this requirement.

Next Release

The Occupational Requirements Survey (ORS) for 2020 is scheduled to be released on December 22, 2020 at 10:00 A.M. Eastern Time.


Spotlight on Statistics

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Using BLS Data to Match People with Disabilities with Jobs

BLS has many data products that can be used to help individuals with disabilities plan their career paths. This Spotlight on Statistics highlights these products and demonstrates how they can be used to evaluate potential jobs, using two specific occupations as examples. read more »

The Economics Daily

The Economics Daily article image

Three-fourths of workers had to interact with the public in 2019; 4.3 percent worked around crowds

In 2019, 75.3 percent of civilian workers were required to interact with the general public. One hundred percent of lawyers, healthcare social workers, and emergency medical technicians were required to interact with the general public. Additionally, 72.0 percent of compliance officers, 61.8 percent of accountants and auditors, and 28.1 percent of restaurant cooks were required to interact with the general public. read more »

Beyond the Numbers

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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 »