USCIS recently updated the EB-485 inventory data. This data is very important for the employment-based immigrants to figure out where their individual cases are located and how many EB-485 cases are pending ahead of the individuals. You can do this because inventory statistics go by the priority date rather than filing date.
Hence, you will have to go to the category
of country, type of preference (EB-1 or EB-2 or EB-3), and your
priority date. And then add up all the numbers before your priority
date cases, which will tell you how many cases are ahead of you.
This information will help you to figure out roughly how far
you are away from the visa cut-off date in the monthly visa bulletin.
Once your number becomes current, then you go to the USCIS monthly
processing times report which reports by the receipt date
rather than priority date to learn how long it will take for
the Service Center to approve your case.
Accordingly, when your
pirority date is not current, the USCIS monthly processing time
report is irrelevant. During the time when your priority date
is not current, the important report is EB-485 Inventory Data
Statistics and Month Visa Bulletin, and not USCIS montly processing