Largest Gig Employer Next Year - U.S. Census Bureau

October 10, 2019
Author: Stephanie Ludwigsen

Part-time work. Flexible schedules. Work weekends and evenings. Keep your full-time job.

With over a half million workers needed, the Census Bureau will be one of the largest gig employees in the country for 2020. In a matter of months, it will hire almost as many workers as Uber has drivers.

U.S. Census Bureau Becomes Large Gig Employer for 2020 Census

As of late August, over 40,000 workers started confirming addresses. That is the most labor-intensive part of the count, according to director of the U.S. Census Bureau, Steve Dillingham. More than 500,000 temporary and part-time jobs, in total, are available as the Census Bureau ramps up hiring to conduct the 2020 census next year. These jobs include census takers who visit homes and office workers who check home addresses.

Technology Reducing Number of Workers Needed

The Census Bureau is using technology in new ways to capture addresses. This will reduce the total number of workers it will need. Using aerial imagery, workers are looking for areas where there has been significant growth or decline.

Aerial imagery will also be used where there are duplicate addresses or when an address is missing. They can then send listers, people that verify addresses, to those blocks to double check for accuracy or get updated information. According to census officials, the new method will save time and money. It will reduce the workload of employees in the field by about two-thirds and require less than one third of the listers who were used in the 2010 count.

A Little Less Conversation, a Little More....Smartphone

The job of a census taker, also called an enumerator, will experience an influx of technology for the upcoming Census. Instead of hauling around bags of forms and boxes of documents, census takers will now use smartphones and laptops to update addresses and help people respond.

Mapping software developed by the Census Bureau will devise the best times to call people at their homes and the best routes to reach them. “Everything used to be on paper,” said Burton Reist, assistant director for communications at the Census Bureau. “We had boxes and boxes of paper. Now it’s all mapped out on the phone.”

While the census serves to impact important measures that will have lasting effects, the unexpected result is this federal agency will begin to resemble a modern employer.