In April, the N.C. Division of Employment Security will begin collecting employee SOC Codes and hours worked when an employer/agent submits a quarterly wage report. This information will provide stakeholders with important data that supports education, training, infrastructure, childcare, transportation, and other factors that promote a robust and thriving workforce.

Look up Standard Occupational Classification Codes using the SOC Lookup Tool 

How to Choose Standard Occupational Classification Codes using the SOC Lookup Tool

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The Standard Occupational Classification, or SOC, is a federal standard coding system to help government agencies and businesses classify workers into occupational categories.

No, it’s not required but it provides critical information to help identify current occupational composition of the state and local labor markets.

Other states are now requiring collection of these codes, so including this information will help employers/agents prepare should it become a requirement in North Carolina. SOC Codes entered by an employer/agent are saved and may be copied from quarter to quarter.

The SOC information is critical for education and workforce training institutions and programs. It helps identify and describe the current occupational parts and local labor markets, and provides important information to guide strategic investments in education and training programs. It’s vital in helping better align education and training programs to meet employer’s workforce needs.

Having SOC Codes for every employee improves data, decisions, and outcomes for employers, jobseekers, and North Carolina’s economy. This information is critical for education and employment training programs. SOC codes also help improve data quality, support policy and program decisions, and enhance employment and wage outcomes.

The SOC is a tiered occupational classification system with four levels: major group, minor group, broad occupation, and detailed occupation. The 23 major groups are broken down into 98 minor groups, followed by 459 broad occupations, and finally 867 detailed occupations.

SOC code structure

The number of hours an employee worked allows comparison of wages across occupations and even between regions of the state.

The number of hours on which the employee's salary is based, regardless of the actual number of hours worked. For instance, if your standard work week is 40 hours, you would multiply the number of weeks your employee worked during the quarter by 40.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics is the federal agency that oversees the Standard Occupational Classification system. For more information, go to: