Thursday, May 31, 2018

Transferable Skills to Telephone Solicitor, Part 1 -- the OOH

Vocational expert assumes the presence of a work history that includes selling cable television service to walk-in customers.

    Contacts homeowners, apartment managers, and other prospects to sell cable television service: Compiles list of prospective customers from lists of homes that do not have cable television and lists of residential addresses with names of owners and occupants. Travels throughout assigned territory to call on prospective customers in their homes to solicit orders. Performs duties as described under SALES REPRESENTATIVE (retail trade; wholesale tr.) Master Title.
GOE: 08.02.06 STRENGTH: L GED: R4 M3 L4 SVP: 3 DLU: 88

The ALJ directs the VE to assume a limitation to sedentary work.  Vocational expert identifies the occupation:

299.357-014 TELEPHONE SOLICITOR (any industry) alternate titles: telemarketer; telephone sales representative
    Solicits orders for merchandise or services over telephone: Calls prospective customers to explain type of service or merchandise offered. Quotes prices and tries to persuade customer to buy, using prepared sales talk. Records names, addresses, purchases, and reactions of prospects solicited. Refers orders to other workers for filling. Keys data from order card into computer, using keyboard. May develop lists of prospects from city and telephone directories. May type report on sales activities. May contact DRIVER, SALES ROUTE (retail trade; wholesale tr.) 292.353-010 to arrange delivery of merchandise.
GOE: 08.02.08 STRENGTH: S GED: R3 M3 L3 SVP: 3 DLU: 88

The regulations describe transferability:
(2) How we determine skills that can be transferred to other jobs. Transferability is most probable and meaningful among jobs in which—
(i) The same or a lesser degree of skill is required;
(ii) The same or similar tools and machines are used; and
(iii) The same or similar raw materials, products, processes, or services are involved.
We assume each of those factors for this discussion.

Focusing in on the object occupation, telephone solicitor, we discover that it belongs to the occupational group of telemarketers, SOC 41-9041.  The O*NET OnLine describes an SVP of 4.0 to < 6.0.  That detail page does not contain a link to the Occupational Outlook Handbook.  That means that the OOH does not contain detailed information about telemarketers.  The occupation is on the long list of occupations not covered in detail.  The OOH describes telemarketers:

Solicit donations or orders for goods or services over the telephone.
  • 2016 employment: 216,600
  • May 2017 median annual wage: $24,460
  • Projected employment change, 2016–26:
    • Number of new jobs: 0
    • Growth rate: 0 percent (Little or no change)
  • Education and training:
    • Typical entry-level education: No formal educational credential
    • Work experience in a related occupation: None
    • Typical on-the-job training: Short-term on-the-job training
  • O*NET links:

How many DOT codes are inside this group called "telemarketers?"  Just one, telephone solicitor.  

The Commissioner takes administrative notice of the OOH.  Administrative notice proves facts without evidence.  Suggested approaches:
Q:  The occupation of telephone solicitor, how many of those just read a script?
Q:  How many telephone solicitors require a month or less of training?
Q:  If the Department of Labor classified telephone solicitor as unskilled in a different publication, would you defer to that classification?
Q:  How does the OOH classify telemarketers, skilled, semi-skilled, or unskilled?
Q:  If a worker couldn't function without assistance within the first month, would that person get terminated?
Administrative notice of the DOT permits rebuttal.  Due process requires the ability to rebut presumptions made in administrative notice.  Technology has changed since the DLU of 1988 and the OOH captures that shift.  We have heard vocational experts in other cases claim that at least part of the occupational base is unskilled.  Beat that drum in the face of transferable skills testimony -- the occupation is no longer semi-skilled.  

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