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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.


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 29.1% in 2022 Historical Data

Light work strength level 32.8% in 2022 Historical Data

Medium work strength level 28.4% in 2022 Historical Data

Heavy work strength level 8.7% in 2022 Historical Data

Very heavy work strength level 1.0% in 2022 Historical Data

Environmental conditions of civilian workers

Exposed to outdoors 32.9% in 2022 Historical Data

Quiet noise intensity level 13.6% in 2022 Historical Data

Moderate noise intensity level 79.7% in 2022 Historical Data

Loud noise intensity level 6.5% in 2022 Historical Data

Education, training, and experience of civilian workers

No minimum education requirement 30.2% in 2022 Historical Data

High school diploma education requirement 40.0% in 2022 Historical Data

Associate's degree education requirement 4.3% in 2022 Historical Data

Bachelor's degree education requirement 19.0% in 2022 Historical Data

Master's degree education requirement 2.5% in 2022 Historical Data

Professional degree education requirement 1.4% in 2022 Historical Data

Cognitive and mental requirements of civilian workers

Interaction with the general public 78.7% in 2022 Historical Data

Varying work pace 54.5% in 2022 Historical Data

Telework available 10.6% in 2022 Historical Data

read more »

News Releases

Constant verbal interactions are required for 27.4% of civilian workers in 2022


Verbal interactions were required constantly, meaning every few minutes, for 27.4 percent of civilian workers in 2022. On average, sitting was required for 43.6 percent of the workday.

Next Release

The Occupational Requirements Survey (ORS) for 2023 is scheduled to be released in early 2024.


The Economics Daily

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Half of civilian workers required over 1 year of preparation time to perform their jobs in 2022

In 2022, 53.7 percent of civilian workers required specific vocational preparation time over 1 year. This preparation comes in the form of formal education, credentials, prior work experience, and on-the-job training needed to perform the job. read more »

Monthly Labor Review

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Has the pandemic permanently changed job requirements?

This article reports on an examination of whether the pandemic led to changes in job requirements measured in the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Requirements Survey. read more »

Beyond the Numbers

Beyond the Numbers article image

Minds at work: what’s required according to the Occupational Requirements Survey

How much problem-solving time goes into an architect’s job? What types of mental capabilities are required of employees who work in a telework environment? What types of interpersonal skills are required for customer service jobs? Mental and cognitive job requirements provide job seekers with important information on the soft skills needed for specific jobs and a sense of the demands of different occupations read more »

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 »