The COVID-19 pandemic continues to create an unprecedented effect on the economy, increasing unemployment to levels not seen since the Great Depression. Many jobs have been lost, and claims for unemployment insurance have surpassed by far the all-time high. In fact, as figure 1 shows, over the last seven weeks, more than 30 million Americans have filed for unemployment insurance, representing more than 20 percent of all employed workers.
In surveying, a “benchmark” is a literal post or plaque that is used as a mark for future surveys. It can be used by others later to take measurements, examine angles, and check elevation. In business, benchmarking is the process of comparing current practices against others. In computing, a benchmark is a test to assess the relative performance of a program.