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Document Preparer, Microfilming



Prepares documents, such as brochures, pamphlets, and catalogs, for microfilming, using paper cutter, photocopying machine, rubber stamps, and other work devices: Cuts documents into individual pages of standard microfilming size and format when allowed by margin space, using paper cutter or razor knife. Reproduces document pages as necessary to improve clarity or to reduce one or more pages into single page of standard microfilming size, using photocopying machine. Stamps standard symbols on pages or inserts instruction cards between pages of material to notify MICROFILM-CAMERA OPERATOR (business ser.) 976.682-022 of special handling, such as manual repositioning, during microfilming. Prepares cover sheet and document folder for material and index card for company files indicating information, such as firm name and address, product category, and index code, to identify material. Inserts material to be filmed in document folder and files folder for processing according to index code and filming priority schedule.

This often-cited occupation has less to do with the activity/function of microfilming or digital scanning. BUT, the preparatory work done by the Document Preparer is vital to BOTH microfilm camera operators and digital scanners. So this position is essential in its role to maximize the efficiency of the actual data archiving, capture and preservation by whatever process, whether by chemical archiving (microfilm) or digital processing (computer-based imaging and storage). Both serve the continuing need to build and preserve lasting records for business, government, and archival purposes. Both methods are still in use today.

This particular DOT occupation is lumped into the same SOC2018 code: 43-9061 Office Clerks, General that contains a total of 73 similar “General Office Clerk” duties. The SOC group used for this DOT occupation has been the same since the last publication of the DOT in 1991. This SOC Group consists of 41 Sedentary, 30 Light, and 1 each at Medium and Very Heavy. The SVP range of this group is from 2-7, with 11 being at SVP 2 and 29 being at SVP 3. The GED-Reasoning of this specific DOT occupation is 3.

The problem with job numbers is that with so many DOT occupations are loaded up into a single SOC group, job numbers are eroded for many of these. Following our standard method for estimating employment, we use our carefully crafted and regularly maintained proprietary cross-reference that examines the available data of the most likely industries in which employers have reported employment of this SOC group in the Occupational Employment and Wage Survey (OEWS). At this time, we associate this particular DOT occupation with the following 4 NAICS industries:

  541500  Computer systems design and related services
  541920  Photographic services
  561400  Business Support Services
  999200  State Government

The frequency at which employment of this SOC group occurs in the above industries totals no more than about 4.058% of the total OEWS employment for this SOC Group. Additionally, we look at the total number of other DOT occupations in this same SOC Group that might also be appropriately located in these industries. We equally divide (at the industry level) the reported OEWS employment by the number of DOT occupations we have associated with each industry in this SOC group. Collectively, across these 4 NAICS industries that we have associated with this DOT occupation, we estimate that this DOT occupation occurs for 0.908%  or just less than 1% of the total employment in this SOC group. This number calculates to 22,846 employment of the 2,517,350 reported for the entire OEWS Group in May, 2022. It is common practice to further subdivide this number by the rate of Full-Time employment, a value we obtain from the 2019 American Community Survey (ACS) Public Use Microdata Systems (PUMS) data set. For Office Clerks, General, this household survey shows that only 62% of General Office Clerks work 35 or more hours per week. So we further reduce the number to 14,165 full-time workers in this occupation. At a 90% level of confidence, we believe that the number is in the range of 14,025 to 14,304 workers.

Review the 10 page description of our "Industry Context" methodology to gain further insight into our estimation process. Had “equal distribution” been applied at the occupation level, the estimate for this this DOT occupation would be 1/73 = 1.37% of the total reported employment, which works out to 34,488 employed (both full and part-time). Our current industry context method to estimate employment accounts for 95.953% of the reported OEWS employment.

This single DOT occupation does not exist alone, but rather works as a team member. There are 4 other DOT occupations with the word “MICROFILM” in it:

  Microfilm Mounter – SVP 2, Light
  Microfilm Processor – SVP 2, Light
  Microfilm Camera Operator (the scanner function) – SVP 3, Light
  Supervisor, Microfilm Duplicating Unit – SVP 7, Light

Every one of these other DOT occupations is found in a different SOC Group.

It is quite likely that rather than using rubber stamps, some minor data entry on a simple, limited choice computer-based application might be used in today’s work environment, but the skill level to use such a simple application would not raise the level of SVP or GED involved.

Additional Notes:  
This is the only “Document Preparer” occupation found in the DOT.  This DOT occupation was last updated in 1986. A Google search of "Document Preparer" shows that today it is mostly associated with preparing legal documents for signature or filing, activities likely associated with that of a trained paralegal. In some states there are certification programs: - and this is a very different type of document preparation.


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