Whether you are a student who is exploring majors and careers, or whether you are looking for confirmation that your career path is the right fit, the Occupational Outlook Handbook (O*NET) can be a great resource.
O*NET is a comprehensive database of job information and statistics updated by the U.S. Department of Labor created to help one research updated information on a wide variety of careers. From the main page, you will be able to type in a specific career in their search box to get results. If you are not at the point where you are ready to type in a specific job title, you can find out information on jobs in a certain discipline.
For example, you can do a search by industry or by the amount of education one needs. There are also special sections marked on the site such as “green jobs” and jobs in STEM disciplines.
Once a search is done, O*NET will provide a list of occupational titles to choose from. Each occupation contains information such as the following:
- Tasks- Information on the daily tasks/responsibilities of the position
- Tools and Technology needed to perform the job well
- Skills needed to perform the job well (examples include active listening, time management, critical thinking, etc.)
- Work Activities –a broad definition of the activities of the day
- Work Context – Is multitasking needed? Is it an indoor or outdoor job? Work individually or with a group?
- Education Level needed to be hired
- Related Occupations – occupations similar in nature
Jobs that are expected to grow rapidly in the next several years, have large numbers of job openings, or are new and emerging occupations will be indicated by a special marking of “Bright Outlook.”
Along with informational interviewing, internships, and volunteering, O*NET is a tool that can help in the career decision process. Feel free to research careers in O*NET and follow up with a UCS career counselor if you have any questions.