Occupational Information Network
What is O*NET?
The Occupational Information Network, or O*NET, is our nation’s primary source for occupational information. It is a web-based database of occupational requirements and worker attributes. O*NET can be accessed through the link www.onetonline.org. The O*NET is used to describe occupations in terms of skill in terms of knowledge required, how the work is performed, and typical work settings. This is a free resource and is available to anyone, including: businesses, educators, job seekers, and human resource professionals. (National Center for O*NET Development)
O*NET was created in 1998 by the Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration. O*NET was designed to replace the then current Dictionary of Occupational Titles from 1938. During this time, industries were growing and technologies were expanding. The focus was turning away from jobs in heavy industry and moving toward more service related work. (National Center for O*NET Development) O*NET encourages efficiency in the workplace and assists in educating and developing those employees through career guidance and training curriculum. It is also a valuable resource for students, human resource personnel, organizational consultants, managers, career counselors, rehabilitation counselors, and anyone else interested in changing careers or looking for new or better jobs. (National Center for O*NET Development)
Each job requires a unique mixture of knowledge, skills and abilities. These characteristics make up the O*NET Content Model. Each model reflects the character of the occupation and the people. This model defines the key features of an occupation as standardized, measurable set of variables called “descriptors.” Each occupation starts with six domains, describing daily aspects of the job and qualifications of a typical worker and expands out to over 277 descriptors. Some of these descriptors include: skills, abilities, knowledge, tasks, work activities, work context, experience levels required, job interests, work values or needs, and work styles. New tools and technology (T2) data provides information on machines, equipment, tools and software that workers may use for optimal functioning in a high performance workplace. (US Department of Labor, 2010)
Figure 1: O*NET Content Model (National Center for O*NET Development)
The O*NET-Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) taxonomy, is a collection of Content Models. This database contains more than 974 occupations. Each occupational title and code is based on the O*NET-SOC taxonomy. This guarantees O*NET data links to other labor market information, specifically employment and wage statistics. (National Center for O*NET Development)
O*NET Data collection is continuously updated using surveys sent to workers from every occupation. Information is collected by randomly targeting businesses that are expected to employ workers in specific occupation; a random sample of those employees is sent surveys. Using these results, O*NET has been significantly improved since its birth and continues to be upgraded and enhanced. These improvements provide as a basis for the Career Exploration Tools available through the website. (National Center for O*NET Development)
What is O*NET used for?
There are several different applications available through O*NET: O*NET Online
My Next Move
My Next Move for Veterans
Mi Proximo Paso
Career Exploration tools
Career Ladders and Lattices
O*NET Online is the web-based application that provides user-friendly access to occupational information contained in the O*NET database. O*NET allows users to find occupations by searching the database, explore careers that use their skills and abilities, view occupational summaries of the worker and requirements of the work, and connect to other on-line career information sources. Users can also...
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National Center for O*NET Development. (n.d.). My Next Move. Retrieved from My Next Move: http://www.mynextmove.org/
National Center for O*NET Development. (n.d.). O*NET Online. Retrieved from O*NET Online: http://www.onetonline.org/
Peterson, N. G., Mumford, M. D., Borman, W. C., Jeannerette, P. R., Fleishman, E. A., Levin, K. Y., et al. (2001). UNDERSTANDING WORK USING THE OCCUPATIONAL INFORMATION NETWORK (O*NET): IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE AND RESEARCH. In Personnel Psychology (Vol. 54 Issue 2, pp. 451-492).
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US Department of Labor. (2010, February 2). ONET: United States Department of Labor Employment & Training Administration. Retrieved from United States Department of Labor Employement & Training Administration: http://www.doleta.gov/programs/onet/eta_default.cfm
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