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O*NET - beyond information - intelligence

  • What is the O*NET® System?

The Occupational Information Network (O*NET) is a database of occupational requirements and worker attributes. It describes occupations in terms of the skills and knowledge required, how the work is performed, and typical work settings. It can be used by businesses, educators, job seekers, human resources professionals, and the publicly funded Workforce Investment System to help meet the talent needs of our competitive global economy. O*NET information helps support the creation of industry competency models.

The O*NET System:

  • Promotes business efficiency and talent development
  • Supports education of the workforce through skills training and curriculum design for regional economic development
  • Facilitates career guidance and career advancement accounts

The O*NET system, using a common language and terminology to describe occupational requirements, supersedes the seventy-year-old Dictionary of Occupational Titles with current information that can be accessed online or through a variety of public and private sector career and labor market information systems. The O*NET system, which has been significantly upgraded and improved since its introduction and continues to undergo periodic enhancements, includes the O*NET database, O*NET OnLine, and the O*NET Career Exploration Tools.

  • O*NET Database

The O*NET database is a comprehensive source of descriptors, with ratings of importance, level, relevance or extent, for more than 900 occupations that are key to our economy. O*NET descriptors include: skills, abilities, knowledge, tasks, work activities, work context, experience levels required, job interests, work values/needs, and work styles. New tools and technology (T2) data provides information on machines, equipment, tools, and software that workers may use for optimal functioning in a high performance workplace. Each O*NET occupational title and code is based on the updated O*NET-SOC 2009 taxonomy. This ensures that O*NET information links directly to other labor market information, such as wage and employment statistics. The O*NET database files are available as free downloads to public and private software application developers. Click on the Developer's Corner at 

  • O*NET OnLine

O*NET OnLine is a web-based viewer that provides easy public access to O*NET information. Powered by the latest O*NET database, users have access to new and updated data unavailable before. Using O*NET OnLine, students, job seekers and workforce, business, and human resource professionals can: find occupations to explore, search for occupations that use designated skills, browse occupations by high growth industry, identify key In-Demand occupations, view occupation summaries and details, use crosswalks from other classification systems such as military or apprenticeship to find corresponding O*NET occupations, view related occupations, create and print customized reports outlining their O*NET search results, and link to other online information resources. O*NET OnLine offers universal accessibility through a single online site that is Bobby approved and 508 compliant. O*NET OnLine has screen reader compatibility built in and users can adjust font size on all screens. O*NET OnLine links directly to wage and employment outlook information through America's CareerInfoNet. OnLine Help provides user-friendly information and can be accessed from any screen. Get O*NET OnLine at

  • O*NET Career Exploration Tools

The O*NET Career Exploration Tools are a set of career exploration and assessment tools that help individuals (workers and students) identify their work-related interests and abilities and what they consider important on the job, so that they can explore occupations that match their interests, abilities, and preferences. The Career Exploration Tools include: (1) O*NET® Interest Profiler (paper-and-pencil and computerized versions); (2) O*NET® Work Importance Locator and Work Importance Profiler (paper-and-pencil and computerized versions, respectively); and (3) O*NET® Ability Profiler. Users may download many of these materials by clicking on Career Exploration Tools at

  • Who uses O*NET?

Human resource personnel

Workforce researchers

Efficiency experts

Business forecasters

Dislocated workers

Industry analysts

Organizational consultants

Students exploring career options

Training facilitators

Software developers

Career counselors


People changing jobs

Program directors

Rehabilitation counselors

People seeking new jobs, better jobs or first jobs

For more information on the O*NET System: