The labor force is a concept that refers to the group of people who are employed or unemployed. It is the sum of employees plus the unemployed, and the unemployment rate is the number of unemployed divided by the number of the labor force. People are considered employed if they work at least one hour as an employee or in their own business at any time of the week, including the twelfth day of the month. The labor force does not include people who are unemployed and are not looking for employment, such as students and retirees. When looking at a company, its value can be labeled as its on-site workforce.
A country's workforce includes both the employed and the unemployed (labor force). In labor law, agricultural workers are sometimes used more narrowly and only applies to a contract worker who is involved in agricultural production, including harvesting, but not to a worker who performs other agricultural work, such as picking fruit. Layoffs and downsizing can completely discourage candidates from applying, so even if they are willing to work, some stop looking for work and are effectively retiring from the workforce. The workforce shrinks during times of economic recession because people tend to have a more negative outlook on their chances of getting a job during these periods. In countries such as the United States, where there is a declining population of U. S.
citizens working on farms, skilled temporary or itinerant labor from outside the country is hired for labor-intensive crops, such as vegetables and fruits. With the aging of the population, lower labor force participation rates, and the decline in population growth rates, the labor force will grow more slowly than in recent decades.