Department of Labor and Regulation

Title - Labor Market Information Center

Visualize This: OnTheMap

From the June 2012 South Dakota e-Labor Bulletin

If a picture is worth a thousand words, how much is a good map worth? Maps have been around for thousands of years. They have come a long way since early cave paintings of landmarks like hills and rivers. Maps let us view huge amounts of data in limited spaces. Some maps offer insight into economic forces and job markets. They help us study changes over time. They can help develop a skilled workforce ready to meet the needs of an area.

The December 2011 e-Labor Bulletin featured a U.S. Census Bureau program called Local Employment Dynamics (LED). The article mentioned a program called OnTheMap. This online program produces maps and reports about where workers live and work. Novices to computer-savvy users can create, download and print workforce maps and related reports. OnTheMap answers questions like:

  • Where do workers live and work?
  • What are the characteristics of workers and employers in a given area?
  • Where are jobs located?
  • How many employees live or work near a potential new business site?

We'll break down the process of creating maps using OnTheMap in as simple of steps as possible.

First, pick the area you want to study. Areas include states, counties, cities, tribal lands, Metropolitan or Micropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs or MiSAs), zip codes and more.

Home or Work Area

Next, define the area selected as a Home Area or a Work Area.

  • Home Area: workers living in the selection area
  • Work Area: workers employed in the selection area

To switch area types, just change a few settings and analyze again.

Analysis Types

OnTheMap offers six types of analysis.

Use Area Profile Analysis to find the location and characteristics of workers who live or work in an area. You can filter results by age, earnings or 20 industry sectors. [Industry sectors are established by the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS). Federal statistical agencies use NAICS to code businesses by economic activities.] Data for 2009 or 2010 also includes race, ethnicity, education levels and gender.

For example, you can find the distribution and characteristics of workers employed in Huron, South Dakota:

OnTheMap example: Distribution and characteristics of workers employed in Huron, South Dakota

Use Area Comparison Analysis to compare job counts and characteristics of workers living or employed in the area. You can compare states to states, counties to counties, etc. Results can be filtered by age, earnings, industry classification, race, ethnicity, education level or gender. (Race, ethnicity, education levels and gender characteristics are available for 2009 or 2010 only.) You can create maps and reports that list, the top five, 10, 25, 50, 100 or all places.

For example, you can find the top 10 South Dakota counties with the workers in the construction industry.

OnTheMap example: Top 10 South Dakota counties with workers in the construction industry

Or you can find the top 10 counties for workers 29 years or younger.

OnTheMap example: Top 10 counties for workers 29 or younger in South Dakota

You can also find the top 10 South Dakota counties for workers 29 years or younger who work in the construction industry.

OnTheMap example: Top 10 South Dakota counties for workers 29 years or younger who work in the construction industry

Use Distance/Direction Analysis to find the distance and direction between home and work locations for workers employed or living in the selected area. Work Area is the movement of workers in workplaces in the selected area to their homes. Home Area is the movement of workers who live in the selected area to wherever they work.

You can narrow your analysis to age, earnings or industry segments. Industry segments split into only three NAICS-based groups:

  • Goods Producing
  • Trade, Transportation and Utilities
  • All Other Services

For example, you can find direction and distance information from where people work in Rapid City, South Dakota, to their homes.

OnTheMap example: Direction and distance for workers living in Rapid City, South Dakota

You could also limit results to workers in the goods producing class.

OnTheMap example: Direction and distance information for goods producing workers living or working in Rapid City, South Dakota

Use Destination Analysis to find the home or work destinations for workers living or employed in an area. After selecting an area to analyze, also choose a destination area (counties, cities, etc.). You can make maps and reports showing top five, 10, 25, 50, 100 or all places. You can narrow your analysis to age, earnings or industry segments.

For example, you can find the top 10 counties of residence for workers employed in Watertown, South Dakota.

OnTheMap example: Top 10 counties of residence for workers employed in Watertown, South Dakota

You also can find the top 10 counties of work for those who live in Watertown.

OnTheMap example: Top 10 counties of work for those who live in Watertown.

Use Inflow/Outflow Analysis to find the count and characteristics of worker commutes. It includes workers traveling to, out of and within the area. You can narrow results by age, earnings and industry segments. Results are total counts. They do not show direction. LMIC uses the inflow/outflow analysis to produce labor shed maps for its Metro Area Profiles (Rapid City MSA and Sioux Falls MSA).

For example, you can look at how many people working in Hughes County live outside the county.

OnTheMap example: People working in Hughes County who live outside the county

Use Paired Area Analysis/Adding an Advanced (Second) Selection Area to find the places and characteristics of workers who share the selected home and work areas. This limits data to the paired areas. You can also use this tool to add, intersect or subtract a second selection area from the first selection area, then apply one of the other five analysis tools.

For example, you can find out how many workers employed in Deadwood, South Dakota live in Lead, South Dakota. You can also check out age, monthly earning and industry segment information for these workers:

OnTheMap example: Workers employed in Deadwood, South Dakota who live in Lead, South Dakota

In another example, you can look at workforce data for those who work in counties with state universities. First, select a county with a state university. Then add an advanced selection that includes the counties with the other state universities.

OnTheMap example: Workforce data for those who work in counties with state universities

Results

You can view and download results in a few ways:

  • Detailed Report: View and download the data in HTML, Microsoft Excel (XLS) or Adobe PDF format.
  • Export Geography: Download the map overlay data to KML (Google Earth) or shapefile format. The set of census blocks that compose the selection is available in CSV format.
  • Print Chart/Map: Download the map overlays, chart and legends as a print-ready PDF or as a collection of images in PNG format.'

You can also save your analysis settings for future use.

Check out OnTheMap on the U.S. Bureau of Census website. As of this writing, these state and year combinations are not included in OnTheMap:

  • Arizona (2002, 2003)
  • Arkansas (2002)
  • Mississippi (2002, 2003)
  • New Hampshire (2002)
  • Massachusetts (all years)
  • District of Columbia (all years)
  • Puerto Rico (all years)
  • Virgin Islands (all years)

Find more information and tutorials at the OnTheMap Help and Documentation Web page.

Data is from 2010, the most current available. Analysis and maps generated May 2012.

Note: OnTheMap uses the same data sources as the LED program. As part of the current LED data infrastructure, Quarterly Workforce Indicators (QWI) generally do not include federal government employment; therefore these workers are not part of OnTheMap results. Other exempted employment varies slightly from state to state due to differences in state unemployment laws. Many farmers and agricultural employees, domestic workers, self-employed non-agricultural workers, members of the Armed Services, some state and local government employees as well as certain types of nonprofit employers and religious organizations (which are given a choice of coverage or non-coverage in a number of states) are also excluded. Projects are currently underway to add federal civilian employees and self-employed workers to the LED data infrastructure.

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Marcia Hultman, Secretary
700 Governors Drive
Pierre, SD 57501-2291
Tel. 605.773.3101
Fax. 605.773.6184