Office Employment Rate New on IZ Research Cities

Office Employment Rate

New: office employment rate for 127 cities and district towns!

The office employment rate – an important indicator for determining the local demand for office space – indicates the percentage of employees subject to social insurance contributions who work in an office at their place of work. This makes it possible to derive the number of office workplaces required and, from this, the demand for office space in the respective city. In the IZ Cities application, we now provide office employment rates for 127 cities and district towns.
Office Workers and Office Employment Rate in %
IZ Research evaluation 2022, source: Federal Employment Agency, as of 31.12.2021

For real estate companies whose focus is on building and renting office space, the most important target group is people who have a traditional screen and desk job. This office work includes, among other things, activities related to reasoning, analysing, managing, planning, organising and communicating, which usually requires a workstation equipped with a desk, chair, computer, monitor, keyboard, mouse and phone in an office space. If the number of office workers in a city is known, it is possible to derive the number of office workplaces required and subsequently the required amount of office space.

The number of office workers is not collected or published by the official statistics.
However, with the help of the so-called “Classification of Occupations 2010” (KldB 2010)1 the number of office workers subject to social security contributions at their place of work can be estimated. The classification is published by the Federal Employment Agency and includes the allocation of employees subject to social insurance contributions to groups according to “occupational specialisation” and “job skill level”. Occupational specialisation refers to occupations that require similar activities, knowledge and skills. The job skill level defines four levels of complexity of the activities to be performed starting with “supportive and semi-skilled activities” up to “highly complex activities”.2 Based on this, we determined the degree of probability of needing an office workplace for each occupational group in terms of the expertise and complexity of the activity as a factor. Multiplying the number of employees subject to social insurance contributions by these factors produces the number of office workers in the respective occupational group at the respective location3 .

The classification of occupations (KldB) is regularly adjusted by the Federal Employment Agency so that new occupational profiles can also be taken into account. It also corresponds to the International Standard Classification of Occupations 2008 (ISCO-08). Since the reporting year 2021, the Federal Employment Agency has developed the system further, now using two new occupational subgroups and 14 new occupational categories, so that the KldB currently comprises 16 occupational fields to which all recognised apprenticeship and university degree occupations can be assigned.

For more information on the methodology of the Classification of Occupations 2010, please go to https://statistik.arbeitsagentur.de/DE/Navigation/Grundlagen/Klassifikationen/Klassifikation-der-Berufe/KldB2010-Fassung2020/KldB2010-Fassung2020-Nav.html

Due to the increasing importance of work using a screen as a result of greater automation and digitalisation of work processes, the amount of office work in many occupational areas that were previously not classified as traditional office work (e.g. agriculture) is also continuously growing.

At the end of 2021, according to our analysis, just over 6 million employees subject to social insurance contributions (43 percent) spent their working time4 on traditional office or computer work in the 127 district towns and independent cities surveyed. The total number has increased by around 12.8 percent since 2016. The office employment rate increased from 41 per cent to 42.8 per cent in the same period.

Entwicklung der sozialversicherungspflichtigen Bürobeschäftigten in 127 deutschen Städten zwischen 2016 und 2021
IZ Research evaluation 2022, source: Federal Employment Agency, as of 31.12.2021
In absolute terms, the majority of office workers subject to social insurance work in Berlin, Munich, Hamburg and Frankfurt. The share of office workers from all workers subject to social insurance contributions is highest in Munich (55.41 per cent), followed by Bonn (55.14 per cent), Erlangen (54.81 per cent), Düsseldorf (53.57 per cent) and Frankfurt am Main (53.50 per cent), almost on a par with Stuttgart (51.21 per cent) and Darmstadt, also with a value still above 50 per cent.
Sozialversicherungspflichtige Beschäftigte und Bürobeschäftigte am Arbeitsort 2021
IZ Research evaluation 2022, source: Federal Employment Agency, as of 31.12.2021

Where can I find the office employment rate?

The office employment rate can be found on IZ Research in the respective city detail pages within the structural data table in the “Labour market & employment” tab. The data is made available on IZ Research every six months, as of 31 December (delivery in July of the following year) and 30 June (delivery in January of the following year).
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