Structure of earnings survey 2006 (earn_ses06)

Reference Metadata in Euro SDMX Metadata Structure (ESMS)

Compiling agency: Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union

Eurostat metadata
Reference metadata
1. Contact
2. Metadata update
3. Statistical presentation
4. Unit of measure
5. Reference Period
6. Institutional Mandate
7. Confidentiality
8. Release policy
9. Frequency of dissemination
10. Accessibility and clarity
11. Quality management
12. Relevance
13. Accuracy
14. Timeliness and punctuality
15. Coherence and comparability
16. Cost and Burden
17. Data revision
18. Statistical processing
19. Comment
Related Metadata
Annexes (including footnotes)

For any question on data and metadata, please contact: EUROPEAN STATISTICAL DATA SUPPORT


1. Contact Top
1.1. Contact organisation

Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union

1.2. Contact organisation unit

F3: Labour market

1.5. Contact mail address

5, Rue Alphonse Weicker L-2721 Luxembourg

2. Metadata update Top
2.1. Metadata last certified 31/12/2010
2.2. Metadata last posted 31/12/2010
2.3. Metadata last update 06/06/2014

3. Statistical presentation Top
3.1. Data description

The Structure of Earnings Survey (SES) is a 4-yearly survey which provides EU-wide harmonised structural data on gross earnings, hours paid and annual days of paid holiday leave, which are collected every four years under Council Regulation (EC) No 530/1999 concerning structural statistics on earnings and on labour costs, and Commission Regulation (EC) No 1738/2005 amending Regulation (EC) No 1916/2000 as regards the definition and transmission of information on the structure of earnings. The objective of this legislation is so that National Statistical Institutes (NSIs) provide accurate and harmonised data on earnings in EU Member States and other countries for policy-making and research purposes.

The SES 2010 provides detailed and comparable information on relationships between the level of hourly, monthly and annual remuneration, personal characteristics of employees (sex, age, occupation, length of service, highest educational level attained, etc.) and their employer (economic activity, size and economic control of the enterprise).

Regional data is also available for some countries and regional metadata is identical to that provided for national data.

3.2. Classification system

The economic activity is coded using NACE Rev. 1.1 (General industrial classification of economic activities within the European Communities).

The occupation is coded according to the International Standard Classification of Occupations, 1988 - ISCO-88 (COM).


The variable 'Highest successfully completed level of education and training' is classified using the International Standard Classification of Education, 1997 version (ISCED 97).

Regional breakdown is based on the Nomenclature of Territorial Units for Statistics (NUTS) reference year 2006. Detailed NUTS classifications are available for EU Member States as well as for EFTA and Candidate Countries

3.3. Coverage - sector

The statistics cover all economic activities defined in sections C to K and M to O of the General industrial classification of economic activities within the European Communities (NACE Rev. 1.1) in enterprises with at least 10 employees.
The size of the enterprise in terms of the number of employees corresponds to the following size classes: 1 to 9, 10 to 49, 50 to 249, 250 to 499, 500 to 999, and 1 000 or more employees. The size class 1 to 9 is optional.

3.4. Statistical concepts and definitions

Employees are all persons who have a direct employment contract with the enterprise or local unit and receive remuneration, irrespective of the type of work performed, the number of hours worked (full or part-time) and the duration of the contract (fixed or indefinite).

Mean monthly gross earnings in the reference month cover remuneration in cash paid before any tax deductions and social security contributions payable by wage earners and retained by the employer, and are restricted to gross earnings which are paid in each pay period during the reference month.

Mean annual gross earnings also cover all 'non-standard payments', i.e. payments not occurring in each pay period, such as: 13th or 14th month payments, holiday bonuses, quarterly or annual company bonuses and annual payments in kind.

Mean hourly gross earnings are defined as gross earnings in the reference month divided by the number of hours paid during the same period.

Number of hours paid includes all normal and overtime hours worked and remunerated by the employer during the reference month. Hours not worked but nevertheless paid are counted as 'paid hours' (e.g. for annual leave, public holidays, paid sick leave, paid vocational training, paid special leave, etc.).

3.5. Statistical unit

The compilation of structural statistics on earnings is based on local units and enterprises, as defined in Council Regulation (EEC) No 696/93, and provides information on employees in enterprises with 10 or more employees classified by size and economic activity.
Information for employees in enterprises with fewer than 10 employees is optional. The statistics shall cover all activities defined in sections C to K and M to O of the general industrial classification of economic activities within the European Communities (NACE Rev. 1.1) in enterprises with at least 10 employees.

3.6. Statistical population

The SES 2006 statistics refer to enterprises with at least 10 employees in the areas of economic activities defined by NACE Rev. 1.1 sections C to O excluding L. The inclusion of section L is optional for 2006, as well as the inclusion of enterprises with fewrer than 10 employees. 

3.7. Reference area

The data cover EU-Member States, Turkey, Iceland and Norway.

3.8. Coverage - Time


3.9. Base period

Not applicable.

4. Unit of measure Top

Euro, Purchasing Power Parities, Percentage and absolute number of persons.

5. Reference Period Top

The reference year is the calendar year 2006.

The reference month is October for the majority of the countries. The choice of another month is accepted as long as justified as being representative by the country. For further details, refer to the National Quality Reports on CIRCABC library.

6. Institutional Mandate Top
6.1. Institutional Mandate - legal acts and other agreements

EU-Member States and other European countries participating in the four-yearly Structure of Earnings Survey according to the

Council Regulation (EC) No 530/1999 of 9 March 1999 concerning structural statistics on earnings and on labour costs;

Commission Regulation (EC) No 1738/2005 of 21 October 2005 amending Regulation (EC) No 1916/2000 as regards the definition and transmission of information on the structure of earnings;

Commission Regulation (EC) No 72/2002 of 16 January 2002 implementing Council Regulation (EC) No 530/1999 as regards quality evaluation of structural statistics on earnings.

Regional data according to Commission Regulation (EC) 1059/2003

6.2. Institutional Mandate - data sharing

Not applicable.

7. Confidentiality Top
7.1. Confidentiality - policy

Regulation (EC) No 223/2009 on European statistics (recital 24 and Article 20(4)) of 11 March 2009 (OJ L 87, p. 164), stipulates the need to establish common principles and guidelines ensuring the confidentiality of data used for the production of European statistics and the access to those confidential data with due account for technical developments and the requirements of users in a democratic society.

7.2. Confidentiality - data treatment

In the SES, information about individual entities (employees and enterprises) is collected. The safety of these microdata has to be guaranteed to make sure that individual entities cannot be recognised through inspection of released data. The goal of disclosure control is to disseminate statistical information in such a way that individual information is sufficiently protected against recognition of the subjects to which it refers, while at the same time providing as much information as possible.

Only tabular data have therefore been published. In order to limit the disclosure risk of these tables the following measures have been applied:

  • Region: restricted to the national level;
  • Economic activity: restricted to NACE Rev 1.1, one digit level;
  • Size of the enterprise: published in size classes of employee numbers;
  • Age: restricted to 5 size classes (less than 30 year, 30-39 years, 40-49 years, 50-59 years, 60+ years);
  • Occupation published at one digit level of the ISCO 88 (COM) classification.

The anonymisation method for SES 2006 consists of two primary confidentiality rules (a minimum frequency and a dominance rule) and as additional protection, secondary confidentiality rule are applied to protect data from recalculation.

8. Release policy Top
8.1. Release calendar

Not applicable.

8.2. Release calendar access

Not applicable.

8.3. Release policy - user access

In line with the Community legal framework and the European Statistics Code of Practice Eurostat disseminates European statistics on Eurostat's website (see item 10 - 'Accessibility and clarity') respecting professional independence and in an objective, professional and transparent manner in which all users are treated equitably. The detailed arrangements are governed by the Eurostat protocol on impartial access to Eurostat data for users.

9. Frequency of dissemination Top


10. Accessibility and clarity Top
10.1. Dissemination format - News release

News releases on-line.

10.2. Dissemination format - Publications

See Eurostat website.

10.3. Dissemination format - online database

Please consult free data on-line or refer to contact details.

10.4. Dissemination format - microdata access

The conditions for SES microdata access are stated in the Regulation (EC) No 1104/2006 of 18 July 2006 amending Regulation (EC) No 831/2002 implementing Council Regulation (EC) No 322/97 on Community Statistics, concerning access to confidential data for scientific purposes. For details see Access to microdata.

10.5. Dissemination format - other
Not applicable.
10.6. Documentation on methodology

SES 2006 implementing arragements (see 21.3 below)

10.7. Quality management - documentation

SES 2006 national quality reports and synthesis of quality reports (see 21.3 below).

11. Quality management Top
11.1. Quality assurance

According to Regulation (EC) 530/1999 national authorities shall ensure that the results reflect the true situation of the total population of units with a sufficient degree of representativity. National authorities are therefore obliged by Regulation (EC) No 698/2006 to provide a Quality Report containing all relevant information to enable the quality of the statistics to be evaluated. The transmission deadline for the SES 2006 Quality Report is 31 December 2008.

For further details, refer to the national Quality Reports on CIRCABC library.

11.2. Quality management - assessment

In the context of Eurostat's "Quality assurance framework" a Quality Peer Review of the Structure of Earnings Survey 2006 was carried out in 2009.

Upon transmission of microdata to Eurostat, SES data are checked for completeness and consistency.

For further details, refer to the national Quality Reports on CIRCABC library.

12. Relevance Top
12.1. Relevance - User Needs

The main users of SES microdata are; the European Commission, European Parliament, ECB, OECD, IMF, ILO, etc. at international level, as well as Ministries for Economy or Finance, trade unions, employers' associations, political parties, research centres, universities and the media at national level.

12.2. Relevance - User Satisfaction

Not available.

12.3. Completeness

Refer to the national Quality Reports on CIRCABC library.

13. Accuracy Top
13.1. Accuracy - overall

Refer to the national Quality Reports on CIRCABC library.

13.2. Sampling error

Refer to the national Quality Reports on CIRCABC library.

13.3. Non-sampling error

Refer to the national Quality Reports on CIRCABC library.

14. Timeliness and punctuality Top
14.1. Timeliness

Refer to the national Quality Reports on CIRCABC library.

14.2. Punctuality

Refer to the national Quality Reports on CIRCABC library.

15. Coherence and comparability Top
15.1. Comparability - geographical

Comparability of the SES data across national borders may be affected by the use of different observation units and definitions, methods or classification schemes, i. e. by deviations between national and Community concepts

Refer to the national Quality Reports on CIRCABC library.

15.2. Comparability - over time

Refer to the national Quality Reports on CIRCABC library.

15.3. Coherence - cross domain

Refer to the national Quality Reports on CIRCABC library.

15.4. Coherence - internal

Refer to the national Quality Reports on CIRCABC library.

16. Cost and Burden Top

Not available.

17. Data revision Top
17.1. Data revision - policy

Apart from adjustments following internal checks, the data are accepted directly as communicated by the Member States. Revisions only occur rarely.

17.2. Data revision - practice

If necessary, after running a series of data validation checks, countries are asked to revise their data until it is considered fit for publishing.

18. Statistical processing Top
18.1. Source data

The data collection of data for the SES 2006 can be obtained from 'tailor-made' questionnaires, existing surveys, administrative data or a combination of such sources, which provide the equivalent information. While accepting a degree of flexibility in the means employed for collecting the survey data, the information obtained must be of acceptable quality and be comparable between European countries.

18.2. Frequency of data collection


18.3. Data collection

The national surveys were generally conducted on the basis of a two-stage random sampling approach of enterprises or local units (first stage) and employees (second stage).

18.4. Data validation

Data validation consists of global checks and plausibility checks. Global checks are necessary to ensure that complete data is received for microdata records. For each country, all microdata records should contain data for all mandatory variables. Missing data or codes are not accepted. Concerning optional variables each country decides which of these it is able to supply. Furthermore, plausibility checks on all variables were done to ensure that the data are reasonable and consistent with other SES variables. Possible deviations are reported by countries in their national Quality Report transmitted to Eurostat.

18.5. Data compilation

EU aggregated are computed, with the number of employees per country being the weighting factor.

18.6. Adjustment

Not applicable.

19. Comment Top

Items 12 to 20 refer to the national SES 2006 Quality Reports (see Annex 21.3).

Related metadata Top

Annexes Top
SES 2006 implementing arrangements
SES 2006 Synthesis of Quality Reports