Northwest Arkansas Workforce Development Area

The Northwest Arkansas Workforce Development Area includes the counties of Baxter, Benton, Boone, Carroll, Madison, Marion, Newton, Searcy, and Washington.


Long-term Employment Projections

2014-2024

Projected Industry Growth
IndustryEstimated EmploymentProjected EmploymentNumeric ChangePercent Change (%)
Total All Industries284,515317,84133,32611.71
Natural Resources and Mining1,5191,531120.79
Construction9,27010,9051,63517.64
Manufacturing33,97835,4631,4854.37
Trade, Transportation, and Utilities55,07661,4876,41111.64
Information2,3542,268-86-3.65
Financial Activities8,4169,6401,22414.54
Professional and Business Services43,86547,1493,2847.49
Education and Health Services53,80162,8229,02116.77
Leisure and Hospitality26,38432,2505,86622.23
Other Services (except Government)8,5929,7321,14013.27
Government11,88114,1822,30119.37
Projected Occupational Growth
OccupationEstimated EmploymentProjected EmploymentNumeric ChangePercent Change (%)Total Annual Openings
Total, All Occupations284,515317,84133,32611.7110,074
Management Occupations30,02132,1242,1037.01826
Business and Financial Operations Occupations15,21416,9211,70711.22475
Computer and Mathematical Occupations7,3687,9976298.54189
Architecture and Engineering Occupations2,4622,74628411.5487
Life, Physical, and Social Science Occupations1,3741,58020614.9961
Community and Social Service Occupations4,4245,20277817.59171
Legal Occupations1,4961,6371419.4341
Education, Training, and Library Occupations14,74716,4751,72811.72492
Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media Occupations3,1583,3281705.3897
Healthcare Practitioners and Technical Occupations12,97215,7632,79121.52565
Healthcare Support Occupations5,8137,3311,51826.11281
1 2
Top 10 Growth Industries, Ranked by Net Growth
IndustryBase EmploymentProjected EmploymentNet GrowthPercent Growth (%)
Food Services and Drinking Places20,66526,0565,39126.09
Ambulatory Health Care Services10,05613,0322,97629.59
Educational Services24,71427,2982,58410.46
Nursing and Residential Care Facilities5,1617,0011,84035.65
Local Government, Excluding Education and Hospitals7,0468,4981,45220.61
Truck Transportation11,64212,9801,33811.49
Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services10,46611,7401,27412.17
Specialty Trade Contractors6,7247,9701,24618.53
General Merchandise Stores8,0759,2021,12713.96
Hospitals7,3118,4111,10015.05
Top 10 Growth Occupations, Ranked by Net Growth
OccupationBase EmploymentProjected EmploymentNet GrowthPercent Growth (%)
Combined Food Preparation and Serving Workers, Including Fas5,0266,5941,56831.20
Heavy and Tractor-Trailer Truck Drivers11,64812,9531,30511.20
Retail Salespersons10,54711,7181,17111.10
Waiters and Waitresses4,9486,0101,06221.46
Cooks, Restaurant2,4863,40091436.77
Personal Care Aides3,4124,29288025.79
Registered Nurses3,6264,47384723.36
Nursing Assistants2,6243,38576129.00
Cashiers6,5307,21068010.41
Office Clerks, General6,4717,0395688.78

*Government excludes State/Local Education & Hospitals

Short-term Employment Projections

2017-2019

Projected Industry Growth
IndustryEstimated EmploymentProjected EmploymentNumeric ChangePercent Change (%)
Total All Industries309,664320,02810,3643.35
Natural Resources and Mining3,3933,348-45-1.33
Construction11,16911,9237546.75
Manufacturing34,73235,4997672.21
Trade, Transportation, and Utilities59,91361,9572,0443.41
Information2,5492,566170.67
Financial Activities9,2189,6914735.13
Professional and Business Services47,89949,8551,9564.08
Education and Health Services60,03262,3922,3603.93
Leisure and Hospitality28,27229,4161,1444.05
Other Services (except Government)10,14210,6374954.88
Government11,65211,8161641.41
Projected Occupational Growth
OccupationEstimated EmploymentProjected EmploymentNumeric ChangePercent Change (%)Total Annual Openings
Total, All Occupations309,664320,02810,3643.3539,116
Management Occupations32,34533,0457002.162,810
Business and Financial Operations Occupations17,77018,5337634.292,058
Computer and Mathematical Occupations8,7479,1393924.48772
Architecture and Engineering Occupations2,4672,5911245.03242
Life, Physical, and Social Science Occupations1,4271,497704.91171
Community and Social Service Occupations4,3744,6472736.24622
Legal Occupations1,5711,652815.16141
Education, Training, and Library Occupations18,54119,1345933.201,818
Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media Occupations3,5653,6761113.11400
Healthcare Practitioners and Technical Occupations14,88215,6007184.821,168
Healthcare Support Occupations6,5606,8803204.88907
1 2
Top 10 Growth Industries, Ranked by Net Growth
IndustryBase EmploymentProjected EmploymentNet GrowthPercent Growth (%)
Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services12,31813,1938757.10
Food Services and Drinking Places22,47023,3458753.89
Management of Companies and Enterprises24,42625,1827563.10
Educational Services27,42228,1777552.75
Ambulatory Health Care Services11,22011,9046846.10
Food Manufacturing15,84316,3855423.42
Specialty Trade Contractors7,9358,4515166.50
Truck Transportation11,73212,1934613.93
Religious, Grantmaking, Civic, Professional, and Similar Org5,5535,9724197.55
Social Assistance7,6238,0414185.48
Top 10 Growth Occupations, Ranked by Net Growth
OccupationBase EmploymentProjected EmploymentNet GrowthPercent Growth (%)
Heavy and Tractor-Trailer Truck Drivers11,72412,1824583.91
Combined Food Preparation and Serving Workers, Including Fas6,7707,1313615.33
Registered Nurses4,3614,5952345.37
General and Operations Managers5,2045,4232194.21
Business Operations Specialists, All Other4,9965,2092134.26
Personal Care Aides2,9853,1972127.10
Retail Salespersons9,4339,6321992.11
Sales Representatives, Wholesale and Manufacturing, Except T3,6573,8481915.22
Laborers and Freight, Stock, and Material Movers, Hand4,7884,9591713.57
Janitors and Cleaners, Except Maids and Housekeeping Cleaner4,2354,3931583.73

*Government excludes State/Local Education and Hospitals

Occupational Employment and Wages

Wages of Northwest's 10 Largest Occupations
May 2017

OccupationEstimated EmploymentAverage Wage ($)Entry Wage ($)Experienced Wage ($)
Heavy and Tractor-Trailer Truck Drivers11,15043,46233,55048,418
Retail Salespersons10,05025,53518,59729,004
Combined Food Preparation and Serving Workers, Inc7,89020,13918,76420,827
Cashiers6,44020,19018,63220,970
Office Clerks, General6,15029,03120,17133,461
Laborers and Freight, Stock, and Material Movers,5,73025,61220,89227,972
General and Operations Managers5,28093,28329,789125,031
Sales Rep., Wholesale & Manufacturing, Except Tech4,39074,76633,76395,267
Registered Nurses4,28956,69542,98463,551
Waiters and Waitresses4,27019,60518,72620,045

Covered Employment and Earnings (QCEW)

Employment and Earnings, By Industry
3rd Quarter 2018

IndustryOwnershipAverage Employing UnitsAverage Covered EmploymentTotal Earnings ($)Average Weekly Earnings ($)
Total, All IndustriesPrivate16,166243,7582,740,123,745865
Natural Resources and MiningPrivate1341,43318,865,3961,012
ConstructionPrivate1,54912,133145,122,202920
ManufacturingPrivate62836,442378,402,864799
Trade, Transportation and UtilitiesPrivate3,96261,197673,592,172847
InformationPrivate2152,47232,569,0521,014
Financial ActivitiesPrivate1,6779,634122,913,396981
Professional and Business ServicesPrivate2,75848,183806,196,3591,287
Education and Health ServicesPrivate2,40835,177378,134,683827
Leisure and HospitalityPrivate1,79131,853138,433,952334
Other ServicesPrivate1,0445,23545,893,669674
1 2

Unemployment Rates and Labor Force Statistics

January 2019

LWDA/CountyCivilian Labor ForceNumber of EmployedNumber of UnemployedUnemployment Rate (%)
Northwest Arkansas317,284306,10611,1783.5
Baxter County16,25615,3948625.3
Benton County132,573128,0964,4773.4
Boone County15,77115,1446274.0
Carroll County12,09811,4496495.4
Madison County7,3007,0562443.3
Marion County6,3476,0023455.4
Newton County3,3193,1571624.9
Searcy County2,8312,6801515.3
Washington County120,789117,1283,6613.0

Population

2017 Census Population

CountyPopulation
Baxter County41,093
Benton County266,300
Benton County251,823
Boone County37,212
Carroll County27,782
Madison County15,907
Marion County16,374
Newton County7,898
Searcy County7,925
Washington County231,996
Washington County223,683

Income

2017 Total Personal Income - BEA

CountyIncome ($)
Baxter County1,459,527,000
Benton County21,712,367,000
Boone County1,283,387,000
Carroll County921,871,000
Madison County587,122,000
Marion County485,964,000
Newton County221,506,000
Searcy County213,409,000
Washington County9,020,670,000

2017 Per Capita Income - BEA

CountyIncome ($)
Baxter County35,293
Benton County81,533
Boone County34,333
Carroll County32,990
Madison County35,934
Marion County29,581
Newton County28,297
Searcy County26,884
Washington County38,883

2017 Median Household Income - Census

5-year estimates

CountyIncome ($)
Baxter County40,072
Benton County61,271
Boone County40,727
Carroll County39,686
Madison County42,894
Marion County36,113
Newton County38,134
Searcy County36,716
Washington County47,452