Survey of Employment, Payrolls and Man-hours (ES1A)

Detailed information for December 1982





Record number:


This survey is an establishment census survey designed to gather data on employment, payrolls and paid-hours from larger employers (companies or establishments of 20 or more employees).

Data release - -


Note that this survey was terminated in 1983 and was replaced by the Survey of Employment Payrolls and Hours (SEPH - 2612).

An establishment census survey designed to gather data on employment, payrolls and paid-hours from larger employers (companies or establishments of 20 or more employees). Generally speaking, the establishment (that is the smallest unit of a firm capable of reporting all basic statistics which enable its classification to one type of industrial activity) constitutes the survey reporting unit. However, establishments are broken down as required into sub-establishments (Employment Reporting Units) for purposes of extracting geographical detail and to facilitate reporting.


  • Employment and unemployment
  • Hours of work and work arrangements
  • Industries
  • Labour
  • Wages, salaries and other earnings

Data sources and methodology


This survey is a census with a cross-sectional design.

Data sources

Responding to this survey is voluntary.

Data are collected directly from survey respondents.

This survey is designed as a mail census of larger firms as recorded in the central file of employers maintained by the Business Register and Profiling Division. Questionnaires are mailed monthly to all firms which employ 20 or more persons in any one month of the year. In order to improve the quality of data, the response rate is increased through two reminders mailed to all non-respondents one month and two months after the initial mail-out. If the two reminders do not produce a response, Regional Operations Division of Statistics Canada attempts to obtain the required data by telephone or through a personal interview. These steps result in a final response rate of over 80%. Firms for which no response is obtained are still accounted for in the Employment, Earnings and Hours table of this publication. To do this, the unknown figures are replaced by figures based on the behaviour of the reporting unit in the previous month and on the behaviour of reporting units which are similar with respect to industrial classification, size and geographical location for which a response has been received for the months in question.

Error detection

Since the ES-1A survey is a census, any inaccuracy in the results is due to non-sampling errors. Some of the factors contributing to non-sampling errors are the inability to obtain responses from all in-scope reporting units, incorrect responses supplied by respondents and mistakes in recording, coding and processing of the data. Non-sampling errors are difficult to measure and no estimates of this type of error have been obtained for this survey as yet. However, non-sampling errors have been kept to a minimum by the use of a carefully designed and worded questionnaire, the relative simplicity of the data requested, follow-up of non-respondents, methodological imputation for non-responses, thorough editing of data and control of the processing operations.


Estimation is made for non-response. Firms are allocated to imputation strata using SIC, geographic region and establishment size criteria. Month to month changes in non-response are adjusted using the average month to month changes in the imputation groups. New firms, for which past data are not available, are imputed at the average size of the imputation group or on the basis of preliminary information collected from those units.

Disclosure control

Statistics Canada is prohibited by law from releasing any information it collects that could identify any person, business, or organization, unless consent has been given by the respondent or as permitted by the Statistics Act. Various confidentiality rules are applied to all data that are released or published to prevent the publication or disclosure of any information deemed confidential. If necessary, data are suppressed to prevent direct or residual disclosure of identifiable data.

In order to prevent any data disclosure, confidentiality analysis is done using the Statistics Canada Generalized Disclosure Control System (G-Confid). G-Confid is used for primary suppression (direct disclosure) as well as for secondary suppression (residual disclosure). Direct disclosure occurs when the value in a tabulation cell is composed of or dominated by few enterprises while residual disclosure occurs when confidential information can be derived indirectly by piecing together information from different sources or data series.

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