The definition of a wage for the Occupational Employment
Statistics (OES) program is straight-time, gross pay, exclusive of premium
pay. Among the inclusions in the wage are base rate, cost-of-living allowances,
guaranteed pay, hazardous-duty pay, incentive pay including commissions
and production bonuses, and on-call pay. Some exclusions from the wage
are back pay, jury duty pay, overtime pay, severance pay, shift differentials,
non-production bonuses, and tuition reimbursements.
There are certain occupations for which the mean
hourly wage is not typical. Individuals in these occupations are paid
on an annual basis and generally work fewer than 2,080 hours per year
(40 hours per week x 52 weeks). Occupations for which annual data are
provided are teachers, musical and entertainment occupations, aircraft
pilots and flight attendants.
The Occupation Employment Statistics Survey defines
employment as the number of workers who can be classified as full or part-time
employees; workers on paid leave; paid owners, officers and staff of incorporated
firms and workers assigned temporarily to other units. Excluded are contractors
and temporary agency employees not on the payroll; unpaid family workers;
workers on unpaid leave and proprietors, owners and partners of unincorporated
Employment represents the estimate of total wage
and salary employment in an occupation across the industries in which
it was surveyed. Not every occupation appears on the every survey form.
Data for specific occupations are collected from establishments within
industries that are the predominant employers of labor in those occupations.
The entry wage is the mean of the lowest third of the wage distribution.
25th Percentile Wage
25th percentile hourly wage is the estimated 25th percentile
of the distribution of wages. Twenty five percent of workers in an occupation
earn wages below, and 75 percent earn wages above the 25th percentile wage.
Median Hourly Wage
Median hourly wage is the estimated 50th percentile
of the distribution of wages. Fifty percent of workers in an occupation
earn wages below, and 50 percent earn wages above the median wage.
75th Percentile Wage
75th percentile hourly wage is the estimated 75th percentile
of the distribution of wages. Seventy-five percent of workers in an occupation
earn wages below, and 25 percent earn wages above the 75th percentile wage.
Median Annual Wage
The median annual wage is the median hourly wage
times 2,080 work hours per year.