U.S. Department of Commerce

Business Dynamics Statistics

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BDS Visualization Tools – What To Do First

Getting Started

The BDS visualization tools allow you to look at the data in different ways to help answer questions of interest to you. A step-by-step example is provided below, and the Help page provides additional information on how to use the tools.

Use the navigation menu on the left to start interacting with the data. Each menu option allows you to look at the same data in different ways.

Want to explore characteristics of your state? Below are the menu options you should use.

[Graphic, Choosing from the BDS Visualization Tools Menu]

Are you researching a particular sector of the economy? Below are the menu options you should use.

[Graphic, Choosing from the BDS Visualization Tools Menu]

Do you want to see how things have changed over time? Below are the menu options you should use.

[Graphic, Choosing from the BDS Visualization Tools Menu]


Step-By-Step Example

  1. Decide on your question of interest: Do large firms have a higher net job creation rate than small firms in the retail trade sector?
  2. Determine which type of visualization will help answer your question: Bar Charts: Compare Measure by Sector
  3. Click on Bar Charts: Compare Measure by Sector in the BDS Visualization Tools menu

    [Graphic, Choosing from the BDS Visualization Tools Menu]
    Click on Bar Charts -> Compare Measure by Sector

  4. Choose "Retail Trade" from the Sector drop-down menu in the selection panel

    [Graphic, Choosing from the Sector Drop-Down Menu]
    Make a selection from the Sector drop-down menu

  5. Select the "Average Size" radio button next to "Firm:" in the selection panel

    [Graphic, Choosing Size]
    Select the type of firm size measure

  6. Select the year of interest from the year slider (2008 in this example) in the selection panel

    [Graphic, Choosing Year]
    Select a year

  7. Review your selections from the selection panel above

    [Graphic, Review Selections]
    Review your selections

  8. Select your measure of interest from the side selection panel ("Net job creation rate" in this example)

    [Graphic, Select Measure]
    Select the measure of interest

  9. De-select the default measure from the side selection panel ("Number of firms" in this example)

    [Graphic, De-Select Measure]
    De-select the default measure

  10. Congratulations! You have successfully created a bar chart of the net job creation rate in Retail Trade in 2008 by the average size of the firm using the BDS visualization tools.

    You can now interact with your visualization. For example, you could add more measures to the chart by selecting them in the side selection panel. You could change the sector or year or look at age instead of size. You can also zoom in to take a closer look, save your chart as a PNG, or save the data underlying your chart to a CSV file.


 BDS Partners

The Center for Economic Studies development of the BDS was partially funded by:

Kauffman Foundation
Small Business Administration


 Anemic Job Creation in
 the Aftermath of the
 Great Recession: Are
 Home Prices to Blame?

BDS Brief 8 (435 KB)

>> BDS Brief 8  PDF (435 Kb)


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Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Center for Economic Studies | (301) 763-6460 | E-mail CES |  Last Revised: November 21, 2013