Labour Force Survey
Statistical activity code: 40013
Classification of Estonian administrative units and settlements (EHAK)
Estonian Classification of Economic Activities (EMTAK 2008) based on NACE Rev. 2
International Standard Classification of Occupations (ISCO 08)
International Standard Classification of Education (ISCED 2011)
Classification of fields of education and training 2013
Classification of Ethnicities 2011
International Standard Codes for the Representation of the Names of Countries (ISO 3166)
Codes for the Representation of Names of Languages (ISO 639-2)
Actively seeking work – refers to a situation where a person took any of the following steps:
- posted a job search advertisement or responded to a job advertisement;
- followed job advertisements;
- uploaded one’s CV to the web or updated it;
- contacted an employer directly;
- turned to relatives/acquaintances to find work;
- contacted the Unemployment Insurance Fund;
- contacted an employment agency;
- went to an interview with an employer, took a text or exam;
- made preparations to start a business or set up a farm.
Discouraged person – a person who would like to work and would be immediately available for work if there was work, but who is not an active job seeker because he or she has lost hope of finding a job.
Economically active population / labour force – persons who wish and are able to work (total of employed and unemployed persons).
Economically passive / inactive population – persons who do not wish or are not able to work.
Employed – a person who during the reference period:
- worked at least one hour and was paid as a wage earner, entrepreneur or freelancer;
- worked without direct payment in a family enterprise or on his/her own farm;
- participated in work-related training;
- was temporarily absent from work due to holidays, illness, pregnancy and maternity leave or work-related training;
- was on child care leave and received or had the right to receive work-related income or (parental) benefits or was to remain on child care leave presumably for less than three months;
- was temporarily absent from work for other reasons and the presumable leave period was less than three months;
- was a seasonal worker outside the work season if he/she continued to regularly fulfil work-related tasks or responsibilities (excl. legal or administrative responsibilities);
- produced agricultural products, of which the main share was meant for sale or exchange.
Employment rate – the share of the employed in working-age population.
Household – a group of people who live in a common dwelling (at the same address) and share joint financial and/or food resources. Persons included in the household are members of the household. A household may also consist of one member only.
Inactive persons, or persons not included in the labour force – persons who belong to one of the following categories:
- persons aged under 15 (in full years, as at the end of the survey week);
- persons aged 89 and older (in full years, as at the end of the survey week);
- persons aged 15–89 (in full years, as at the end of the survey week) who were neither employed nor unemployed, based on the definitions of employment and unemployment given in the previous points.
Labour force participation rate / activity rate – the share of the labour force (total number of the employed and unemployed) in working-age population.
Underemployed – a person who works part-time, but would like to work more and is available for additional work (within two weeks).
Unemployed – a person who fulfils the following three conditions:
- is without work (does not work anywhere during the survey week and is not temporarily absent from work);
- is currently (within two weeks) available for work if there was work;
- is actively seeking work.
Unemployment rate – the share of the unemployed in the labour force.
Working-age/labour-age population – the basis for examining the economic activity of the population is the population between the ages of 15 and 74 in the reference week.
Permanent residents of Estonia aged over 15 (previously persons aged 15–74)
A list of over 15-year-old permanent residents of Estonia compiled based on the population and housing census (2011) and the Population Register
Estonia as a whole
DIRECTLY APPLICABLE LEGAL ACTS
Regulation (EU) 2019/1700 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 10 October 2019 establishing a common framework for European statistics relating to persons and households, based on data at individual level collected from samples, amending Regulations (EC) No 808/2004, (EC) No 452/2008 and (EC) No 1338/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council, and repealing Regulation (EC) No 1177/2003 of the European Parliament and of the Council and Council Regulation (EC) No 577/98 (Text with EEA relevance)
OTHER LEGAL ACTS
Official Statistics Act
Statistical Office of the European Union (Eurostat)
Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)
International Labour Organization (ILO)
International Monetary Fund (IMF)
The dissemination of data collected for the purpose of producing official statistics is guided by the requirements provided for in § 32, § 34, § 35, § 38 of the Official Statistics Act.
The treatment of confidential data is regulated by the Procedure for Protection of Data Collected and Processed by Statistics Estonia (in Estonian). See more details on the website of Statistics Estonia in the section Õigusaktid.
Notifications about the dissemination of statistics are published in the release calendar, which is available on the website. Every year on 1 October, the release times of the statistical database, news releases, main indicators by IMF SDDS and publications for the following year are announced in the release calendar (in the case of publications – the release month).
All users have been granted equal access to official statistics: dissemination dates of official statistics are announced in advance and no user category (incl. Eurostat, state authorities and mass media) is provided access to official statistics before other users. Official statistics are first published in the statistical database. If there is also a news release, it is published simultaneously with data in the statistical database. Official statistics are available on the website at 8:00 a.m. on the date announced in the release calendar.
Data are published in the statistical database at https://andmed.stat.ee/en/stat under the subject area “Social life / Labour market / Employed persons / Annual statistics” in the following tables:
TT0150, TT0200, TT02001, TT0201, TT0205, TT206, TT207, TT209, TT210, TT2109, TT2119, TT2158, TT217, TT220, TT222, TT223, TT224, TT225, TT226, TT227, TT228, TT229, TT230, TT231, TT232, TT234, TT235, TT236, TT2369, TT238, TT241, TT2419, TT243, TT244, TT245, TT246,
under the subject area “Social life / Labour market / Employees / Annual statistics” in the following tables:
under the subject area “Social life / Labour market / Unemployed persons / Annual statistics” in the following tables:
TT3510, TT352, TT353, TT3539, TT43, TT433, TT434, TT435, TT436, TT44, TT440, TT443, TT70, TT71,
under the subject area “Social life / Labour market / Inactive persons / Annual statistics” in the following tables:
TT45, TT4514, TT4515, TT453, TT454, TT456,
under the subject area “Social life / Labour market / General data of labour market / Annual statistics” in the following tables:
TT0151, TT330, TT332, TT3321, TT4661, TT467, TT51, TT54, TT55, TT56,
under the subject area “Social life / Labour market / Education of working-age population / Educational level and knowledge of languages” in the following tables:
TT0100, TT0119, TT109, TT111, TT115, TT117, TT1209, TT123, TT130, TT131, TT132, TT133, TT134, TT136,
under the subject area “Social life / Labour market / Education of working-age population / Participation in lifelong learning during last 4 weeks” in the following tables:
TT160, TT161, TT170, TT171, TT174, TT175, TT176, TT177,
under the subject area “Social life / Worklife quality / Labour market gaps” in the following tables:
TKL01, TKL13, TKL17, TKL29,
under the subject area “Social life / Social exclusion and poverty / Poverty and inequality” in the following tables:
LES09, LES10, LES11, LES39
and under the subject area “Social life / Labour market / Immigrant population” in the following tables:
IR01, IR03, IR05, IR07, IR10, IR20, IR209, IR22, IR23, IR30, IR40, IR43, IR45.
The dissemination of data collected for the purpose of producing official statistics is guided by the requirements provided for in § 33, § 34, § 35, § 36, § 38 of the Official Statistics Act. Access to microdata and anonymisation of microdata are regulated by Statistics Estonia’s procedure for dissemination of confidential data for scientific purposes.
Due to the requirements of the Integrated European Social Statistics (IESS) regulation, as of 2021, the Estonian Labour Force Survey is based on a new methodology (more specifically Changes in the methodology of the Estonian Labour Force Survey). The main goal of the changes is to improve data quality.
To assure the quality of processes and products, Statistics Estonia applies the EFQM Excellence Model, the European Statistics Code of Practice and the Quality Assurance Framework of the European Statistical System (ESS QAF). Statistics Estonia is also guided by the requirements in § 7. “Principles and quality criteria of producing official statistics” of the Official Statistics Act.
Statistics Estonia performs all statistical activities according to an international model (Generic Statistical Business Process Model – GSBPM). According to the GSBPM, the final phase of statistical activities is overall evaluation using information gathered in each phase or sub-process; this information can take many forms, including feedback from users, process metadata, system metrics and suggestions from employees. This information is used to prepare the evaluation report which outlines all the quality problems related to the specific statistical activity and serves as input for improvement actions.
Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications
Ministry of Rural Affairs
Ministry of Finance
Ministry of Social Affairs
Institute of International and Social Studies
University of Tartu
The survey serves as a basis for the analysis of changes in the labour market, which is used mainly by different ministries, universities and research organisations. At the European Union level, the data are used to make comparisons between member states.
Since 1996, Statistics Estonia has conducted reputation and user satisfaction surveys. All results are available on the website of Statistics Estonia in the section User surveys.
The data are complete and correspond to the data composition requirements prescribed by the European Commission regulation on labour force survey statistics.
The accuracy of source data is monitored by assessing the methodological soundness of data sources and the adherence to the methodological recommendations.
The type of survey and the data collection methods ensure sufficient coverage and timeliness.
Main indicators of the labour force survey, the standard errors and relative standard.
Statistics Estonia aims to reduce the amount of non-sampling errors through continuous improvement of the methodology and the survey process, e.g. by adopting computer-assisted data collection which helps to prevent coding and typing errors.
The monthly data (three months moving average) are published 60 days after the end of the reference month (T + 60).
The quarterly data are published 45 days after the end of the reference quarter (T + 45).
The annual average data are published 45 days after the end of the reference year (T + 45).
The data have been published at the time announced in the release calendar.
The data are comparable with the data of other European Union countries.
Statistics Estonia conducted the first Labour Force Survey at the beginning of 1995 (ELFS 95). In 1997–1999, the survey was conducted in the 2nd quarter. Starting from the year 2000, the Labour Force Survey is a continuous survey providing quarterly and annual results.
In 2021, two new tables were added where previously published indicators (starting from 2018) have been recalculated using the new methodology and weights:
TT0150: Employed persons in main job by sex, age group and full/part-time job (quarterly),
TT0151: Labour market headline indicators by sex and age group (quarterly).
In the other tables, there is a break in the time series between 2020 and 2021. Starting from 2021, the published indicators have been compiled according to a new methodology.
There are three data sources for measurement of unemployment in Estonia: the Estonian Labour Force Survey (ELFS) of Statistics Estonia, Eurostat’s harmonized unemployment statistics and Estonian Unemployment Insurance Fund’s registered unemployment data. The methodology of data collection and publication frequency are different for these data sources. Read more from Estonian Labour Force Survey. Methodology, chapter 6.1..
The auxiliary employment indicators for national accounts according to ESA 95 definitions are also calculated on the basis of ELFS. When using the data of ELFS and national accounts, differences arising from definitions and concepts should be taken into consideration. Read more from Estonian Labour Force Survey. Methodology, chapter 6.2..
The outputs of the statistical activity are coherent.
Total population is 1 019 940 persons aged 15–89. The sample includes 1,150 households (2,500 persons) per quarter. The sample design is stratified systematic sampling of individuals whose households are included into sample.
Stratification is made by place of residence. The 15 counties of Estonia and Tallinn are divided into four strata according to the population size (I – Tallinn, II – four bigger counties (Harju (without Tallinn), Ida-Viru, Pärnu, Tartu), III – ten smaller counties (Jõgeva, Järva, Lääne, Lääne-Viru, Põlva, Rapla, Saare, Valga, Viljandi, Võru), IV – Hiiu county).
The data on loss of capacity for work and on degree of disability are received from the Social Insurance Board.
Data on ongoing studies, if a person is studying in Estonia, are received from the Estonian Education Information System (EHIS) of the Ministry of Education and Research.
DATA FROM OTHER STATISTICAL ACTIVITIES
The data are collected from individuals. The method used for collecting the data are a computer-assisted web interview (CAWI) and a telephone interview (CATI) in the case of households who have been interviewed before. The interviews are conducted by Statistics Estonia's interviewers with relevant training. The Survey Fieldwork Information System is used to manage and monitor data collection. The questionnaires have been designed to be filled in electronically by the interviewer. Information about the questionnaires and data submission is available on the website of Statistics Estonia in the section Questionnaires.
The data are collected with the official statistical questionnaires “Labour Force Survey. Personal questionnaire” and “Labour Force Survey. Household questionnaire”.
The data of the Estonian National Social Insurance Board are received via an FTP-server and the data of the Ministry of Education and Research are received via a data cloud.
Arithmetic and qualitative controls are used in the validation process, including comparison with other data. Before data dissemination, the internal coherence of the data is checked.
For non-response correction, individuals are divided into seven response homogeneity groups by place of residence (county and urban/rural) according to the non-response rate in the region. The weight of non-response of the individual is inversely proportional to the overall response rate in this group.
Before expanding data to the population the weights will be calibrated by sex and age group (5-year groups), ethnic nationality (as of 2005) (Estonians, non-Estonians), educational level (as of 2021) (three levels), county of the place of residence of household, and degree of urbanisation (urban or rural). The basis of the calibration is the distribution of the population of Estonia by sex, age group and county on 1 January according to demographic data. After computing calibrated weights, the expansion factor is calculated for every respondent, which is the ratio of the total population to the number of interviewees per quarter. The final weight of the individual is calculated by multiplying the weight found earlier with the expansion factor.
In addition, as of 2021, the data of the Labour Force Survey are weighted excluding persons living in institutions and in conscript service.