Data that reflect the current labor market are key to the value of the Occupational Information Network (O*NET®) as the nation's primary resource for comprehensive descriptive occupational information. The O*NET project is involved in a multiyear data collection program, approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB # 1205-0421), to gather information from workers in occupations in the O*NET-SOC occupational structure. Data for approximately 200 occupations are collected each year.

Data are collected directly from incumbent workers in targeted occupations at business establishments statistically selected from a random sample. These workers complete standardized questionnaires, available in mailed paper- or web-based forms. Returned data collection instruments are analyzed and information is incorporated into the O*NET database on a periodic basis. The new occupational information is made available through the O*NET OnLine and related websites, in the downloadable O*NET database files, and in the O*NET web services.

Under the sponsorship of the Department of Labor (DOL)/Employment and Training Administration (ETA), O*NET data collection activities are conducted by the National Center for O*NET Development, located in Raleigh, North Carolina. The O*NET Center has contracted with the Research Triangle Institute (RTI) in the Raleigh area for survey planning, data collection and input, and analysis. Both organizations maintain web-sites with more detailed information, including background on the O*NET data collection program, the information collection request for clearance by the Office of Management and Budget, copies of the O*NET data collection instruments, and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).