The Department has been compiling and disseminating statistics on labour issues since it was established in 1919. These statistics are mainly labour statistics produced by accredited national statistical institutions, which the Department
- requests from national authorities (ministries responsible for labour, national statistical offices,etc.), largely with paper or electronic questionnaires;
- draws from official national publications or Internet websites; or
- receives routinely from national statistical services.
The Department of Statistics checks for consistency with statistics previously submitted for the same countries, to ensure that really outlandish values are verified and that they correspond to the statistics requested for the countries. However, no adjustments are made to the statistics received before dissemination. The only exceptions are that the Consumer Price Index numbers are re-based to some standard base year, and that food price statistics are converted to standard unit prices. The Department also gathers and disseminates the relevant methodological information on the statistics. These statistical series and methodological information appear in regular ILO publications and are contained in LABORSTA, the online statistical database of the Department of Statistics.