The German Classification of Occupations (KldB) exists in different versions, which are from different originators (i.e. the Federal Employment Agency and the Federal Statistical Office). The oldest version was published in the 1970s, the latest in 2010 and was revised in 2020. In between, there were various updates that can be converted into each other by means of a conversion key. It should be noted, however, that such a conversion is not possible for the classifications of the different originators.

The purpose of the KldB is firtsly to encode applicant and job vacancies at the Federal Employment Agency and secondly to encode occupations for labour market statistics, training market statistics and employment statistics in order to enable data analysis at occupational level (cf. Bundesagentur für Arbeit (2010): Klassifikation der Berufe 2010 - Band 1: Systematischer und alphabetischer Teil mit Erläuterungen. Federal Employment Agency: Nuremberg: 15).

The KldB is usually encoded by the survey institutes or GESIS from the full texts of the occupation information collected in the questionnaire.
Furthermore, it forms the basis for the creation of other occupational classifications, such as the Magnitude-Prestige Scale (MPS).