Job Flows Into and Within Oregon

by Gail Krumenauer

June 12, 2017

The U.S. Census Bureau’s Longitudinal Employer-Household Dynamics program provides information about the origin and destination of workers changing jobs. These job-to-job flow statistics show the age, gender, industries, and geographic location of workers entering and leaving Oregon. They also provide insights on job movements across industries within the state.

Destination: Oregon

Each quarter between summer 2014 and spring 2015, Oregon added an average of 17,300 workers from other states, while 14,200 workers left Oregon for jobs elsewhere. That means on net each quarter an average of 3,100 workers from other states left jobs there to start one in Oregon.

The  biggest exchanges occurred with neighboring West Coast states. Oregon’s quarterly net job flows from California averaged 1,100, while posting a net loss of 410 to Washington.
By industry, the largest net worker gains from California occurred in retail trade (240), administrative and waste services (170), health care and social assistance (140), and accommodation and food services (140). Only one industry – agriculture, forestry, fishing, and hunting – saw a quarterly net loss of workers from Oregon to California between summer 2014 and spring 2015. Meanwhile, several industries experienced a net outflow of workers from Oregon to Washington. The largest among them was construction (-130), followed by accommodation and food services (-90), and retail trade (-60).

Washington was a unique case as the only state with a net outflow of workers; Oregon netted a gain of workers from every other state. After California, the largest quarterly job-to-job flows into Oregon came from Arizona (230), Illinois (130), New York (120), Texas (110), and Colorado (100). New England and Southern states had the fewest net job-to-job flows into Oregon. States with less than 15 workers taking jobs in Oregon included Delaware, Alabama, Maine, Vermont, Mississippi, Kentucky, and South Carolina.

Dynamics Within Oregon

The Census data also show an average of 68,300 workers shifting from one job to another within Oregon each quarter. These included workers who changed from one job to another with little or no time unemployed in between.
Many changes involved a move from one job to another within the same industry. The largest job-to-job flows (5,100) within a sector occurred in trade, transportation, and utilities. More than half (2,900 or 57%) of those moves were from one retail job to another. Health care and social assistance also showed a large volume of job changes, with an average of 4,300 job-to-job flows per quarter. Many job-to-job moves (2,300) within Oregon also occurred in construction.

Job flows from one industry to another were most prominent from administrative and waste services to manufacturing, where an average of 2,400 job flows occurred quarterly. Transitions from temporary employment services agencies into a manufacturing establishment likely accounted for a large portion of those movements. Another 2,000 quarterly job flows included workers leaving jobs in leisure and hospitality for positions in trade, transportation, and utilities. Three-fourths of these job switches occurred when someone left a job in accommodation and food services for another in retail trade.

More Information Available

The Census Bureau’s job-to-job flow data are still relatively new, and provide more dimensions on job movements across Oregon and the U.S. than have previously been available anywhere. Their public-use data tools can be found at

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