When was the last time you met a Knocker-Upper? How about a Catchpole? The chances are you have never come across anyone with these job titles, nor are you likely to, since they have been obsolete for a good many years.
The Knocker-Upper, who was employed to go around the neighbourhood in the early hours of the morning to wake people up for work, by tapping on windows with a bamboo stick or sometimes by blowing through a pea shooter, has long since been made redundant by the alarm clock (although interestingly, there were still one or two employed in some industrial towns as late as the 1970s). The Catchpole, on the other hand, has not entirely been made redundant (although some may wish they were given the nature of the job), but are now called Debt Collectors or Tax Collectors.
Job titles are continually changing for a number of reasons. New technologies can make some jobs obsolete; certain jobs acquire new names; jobs might evolve to incorporate other tasks (for instance, although the job title Typists still exists, by and large a job that once consisted of one basic task, has evolved to incorporate a whole range of other administrative tasks); and sometimes more levels of specificity are added to what was once a generic job title. The changing nature of jobs and job titles has accelerated in the past decade or so, as the world of work has undergone a radical transformation, and to ensure that our data is keeping pace with these changes, we have created Emsi Titles — a new library of job titles which:
- Expands the number of job titles in our data from about 5,400 titles to over 60,000
- Is updated every few weeks to keep track of new, emerging job titles
- Offers a much more accurate reflection of the latest job titles being used by employers.
This data is now in our Analyst tool, in both Job Posting Analytics and Profile Analytics, which means that users will benefit from much richer and more granular data that better reflects the complexities of the modern workforce. In terms of usability, as well as the ability to make searches that are far more specific, users can also search for a broad job title, with the more specific titles that sit underneath this headline title also then coming up in the search results.
Here’s a quick example. If we had searched for Home Care Social Workers using our previous job titles library, it would have shown that there were around 231,000 unique employer postings for such jobs throughout the UK in 2020. However, there are actually a good many more specific titles under the Home Care Social Workers umbrella, and using the new Emsi Titles data we can now see what these are. For instance, the chart below shows the proportionate distribution for these more specific job titles, which all sit under the overarching title, Home Care Social Worker. As you can see, the data offers a richer and more granular view of the labour market:
Annual Data Update … or Rather Biannual Update
Emsi Titles has been incorporated into Analyst as part of our annual data update, in which we have added an extra year of data from the Business Register and Employment Survey (BRES), as well as the latest available Workforce Jobs (WJ) and Labour Force Survey (LFS) data. This comes with the caveat that the official data does not yet show the kinds of significant movements that we might have expected after the seismic changes to the economy in the last year, largely due to the fact that it won’t be until the Furlough scheme comes to an end that we will begin to see the true picture emerging in the official data.
However, in order to ensure that you don’t have to wait another 12 months for these changes to be seen in our data, and to make sure our data is as reflective of the latest official datasets as possible, we will be adding a further data update later in the year.
New Research Report on Staffing Patterns and Demographics
Finally, as part of this datarun our Senior Economist, Duncan Brown, has put together a research paper looking at some of the trends in staffing patterns and demographics highlighted by the data, particularly in terms of demonstrating the evidence on the interaction between occupation and industry, and the use of labour by age and gender across those occupations and industries. Amongst the key findings were:
- Over the decade from 2008 to 2018, generally speaking occupations have become slightly more distinctive and less varied in their industry presence, suggesting an increasing division of labour.
- Industries and occupations with rapid growth have seen some of the most significant changes in staffing pattern — for example, web portals have shifted to have more commercial roles, and programmers have become more concentrated in dedicated programming and consulting workplaces.
- While there has been increasing female participation in the labour market, it remains the case that there is a significant variation in female participation between roles, with “caring” roles remaining highly female while production and non-healthcare technical roles remaining highly male in workforce composition.
- Age mix also varies significantly, with older workers more present in agriculture and manufacturing, while younger workers dominate accommodation and food service activities but also are highly prevalent in growing service sectors.
You can download a copy of the paper here.
If you have any questions about Emsi Titles, the datarun, or the research paper, get in contact with us.