Rogue Valley Employment Projections by Industry 2017-2027

by Guy Tauer

July 3, 2018

The Research Division at the Oregon Employment Department just released our 10-year employment forecasts. These forecasts chart the expected course for employment gains or losses by broad industry category and detailed occupational title for the 2017-2027 period. Total industry employment in the Rogue Valley is predicted to grow from 123,190 in 2017 to reach 137,610 by 2027, a gain of 12 percent and matching Oregon’s overall growth rate. Total private-sector employment, representing 82.6 percent of total employment, is expected to also grow by 12 percent during the decade. Government employment, accounting for 11.6 percent of total employment, is forecast to grow by just 6 percent.

Industry Employment Net Change

Health care and social assistance, which accounts for about one out of six payroll jobs in the Rogue Valley, is expected to add the most new jobs during the forecast period, up by 3,780 jobs. This industry’s healthy growth was nearly double the new jobs expected in the industry with the next greatest number of new jobs, leisure and hospitality. This tourism- reliant sector is forecast to add 1,930 jobs between 2017 and 2027. About one out of 11 payroll jobs were in leisure and hospitality in 2017. Both construction and professional and business services are predicted to add more than 1,300 new jobs in the forecast decade. Slower growing manufacturing and retail trade are still expected to add jobs by 2027, just under 1,000 for both industries. Natural resources and mining, a small industry comprising only about 3 percent of Rogue Valley payroll employment, is expected to add just over 800 jobs between 2017 and 2027. The increase is related to continued expected growth in the marijuana industry as well as support activity for forestry job gains. Slower-growing industries adding relatively few jobs include federal government, state government, and wholesale trade. No industries are expected to lose jobs over the forecast period, but federal government post office and information are predicted to have unchanged employment.
Industry Growth Rates

Over the decade, construction is expected to have the fastest  job growth rate, up by nearly 25 percent. Residential housing permits, while still below levels seen prior to the Great Recession, are picking up. Low housing inventory and continued population increase will bolster demand for construction employment in the coming decade. Over the past year, construction had the fastest job growth among Rogue Valley industries.
Natural resources and mining, while a small industry is expected to grow more than 20 percent in 10 years. Forestry support activity and “other miscellaneous crop production,” mostly related to cannabis production, is expected to bolster growth in this small but budding industry. Another above average growth rate industry is health care and social assistance, with an employment increase of about 18 percent by 2027. Demand for health care services with a growing and aging population will create more employment opportunities in this recession-resistant industry. Professional and business services, which includes a diverse blend of industries including temporary help, management of companies, professional and technical services and the like, is expected to grow just slightly faster than average, with a 14.6 percent increase. Leisure and hospitality is forecast to grow about the same as the all-industry average during the forecast period.

Manufacturing is expect to grow, but only about 9 percent over those 10 years. Retail trade, accounting for about one out of seven Rogue Valley payroll jobs in 2017, is forecast to only grow by 5 percent by 2027. Labor saving technologies such as the ever increasing number of businesses with self-checkout stations, automated inventory management systems, along with growth in online retail sales are just some of the headwinds the retail trade industry faces.

Even within industries that don’t have as much expected job growth between 2017 and 2027, there will be ample opportunities for job seekers to fill positions that open up as workers leave the labor force due to retirement, illness, family obligations, or simply change from one occupation to another in the course of their careers. Stay tuned for the next article that discusses these growth and replacement job openings when we turn our attention to our 10-year occupational employment forecasts.


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