Jobs in the Census Bureau are quite in demand in the view of the increasing unemployment rate. Find out what types of jobs are available in the Census Bureau, and what educational and other qualifications are required to get a job in the bureau.
Several countries of the world conduct censuses once in every ten years, and the United States is one of them. Taking a nationwide census is quite a big task, for which the US Census Bureau has to hire thousands of people for permanent and temporary positions. The hiring for temporary positions usually takes place prior to the scheduled census.
Out of the various permanent jobs, the most important ones are those of the statisticians or analysts, mathematical statisticians, geographers, cartographers, and information technology specialists. Among the temporary jobs, the biggest hiring efforts are carried out for enumerators. It is a field job, where enumerators have to visit every house of the area assigned to them, and get the census form or the questionnaire filled up. Other temporary positions are also created during this period, which include, crew leaders, office assistants, and supervisors.
Jobs in the Census Bureau
Statisticians, geographers, cartographers, mathematical statisticians, information technology specialists, supervisors, crew leaders, office staff, and enumerators are crucial for the success of a census.
A statistician of the Census Bureau has to work on the data of two main categories – demographics and economics or social science. To become a statistician, a degree is required in any of the following fields – economics, statistics, marketing, finance, business management, sociology or demography.
The job of a mathematical statistician is to develop new statistical methodologies and time-series models. He or she is also responsible for designing surveys to measure income, poverty, unemployment, and various other aspects of the economy. An applicant for this job is required to have a strong background in mathematics and statistics.
A geographer working in the Census Bureau has to develop expertise in mapping, which can guide the enumerators in collecting census information. A geographer is also responsible for analyzing data, and for planning and monitoring field operation. A strong background in geography and other related fields like cartography is required to get qualified for this job.
The job of a cartographer is to develop expertise in mapping and map design, prepare specialized maps and cartographic files, and develop automated map production systems. A degree in cartography, along with a strong background in related science are required to apply for this job.
The main responsibility of an information technology specialist is the maintenance of hardware and software systems, as well as planning and coordination of the installation, operation, testing, and troubleshooting of the same. A degree in computer science, information science, or information systems management with experience in the information technology sector are required to apply for this job. As far as the selection procedure for the temporary jobs is concerned, it is done by conducting tests.
How to Get a Job in the Census Bureau?
The qualifications that are required to get a permanent job in the bureau have already been explained. As far as the temporary jobs are concerned, the largest number of openings are there for enumerators. The enumerators are responsible for getting the census questionnaire filled up by the public, and also for address verification.
To apply for such a job, first of all you have to fill up an application form, which can be downloaded from the website of the Census Bureau. Otherwise, you can go to your regional Census Bureau office to get information about the various employment opportunities.
Applications are usually required to be submitted in person on the day of the employment test. The first step to get such a job is to clear the test that is conducted by the bureau. The test is not so difficult, but can be a bit tricky. Questions are designed to test numerical skills, as well as skills on clerical, decision-making, map reading, and comprehension. To prepare for the test, you can take up the practice test, in order to get familiar with the question pattern.
Once you get the Census Bureau job of an enumerator, be prepared to visit the areas assigned to you. You have to interview the inhabitants of those areas, and get the questionnaire filled up by them. The chances of getting a census job depends on several factors, such as your test score, language skills, availability of work in your area, and also the number of hours you are available to work each week. Usually the pay rates are US$ 14 to US$ 20 for an hour.