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State of the St. Louis Workforce

Understanding the workforce is the first step in developing talent for it. We explore the trends and needs of our local marketplace and share our findings with you.

2019 panelists discuss report findings at STLCC's State of the St. Louis Workforce launch event.

Our Workforce, Our Mission

To set our students up for success, we need to teach them relevant skills for in-demand fields. To teach them those skills, we need to understand the needs of the workforce.

Through our research, we are able to shape our programs so that our graduates are equipped to excel in the job market.

Each year, we invest time and resources into taking an in-depth look at the job market around us. We then present our findings to the community at our State of the St. Louis Workforce event. Typically each August, we have shared this report and brought in local leaders to speak to the needs and concerns it uncovers. The pandemic has changed our schedule and how we will share employer insights. The 2020 report will examine the impact COVID-19 has had on employers and individuals and what we need to do to move forward. This year's special report will be released in October, and will feature a companion online or broadcast event featuring key local workforce leaders.

Download the 2019 Report

Our 2019 survey of 1,144 employers from 16 industry sectors represents a composite of the St. Louis regional economy. Since St. Louis Community College’s first report in 2009, we have tracked the region’s transition from the high unemployment of the Great Recession through the last ten years of growth to a labor market now constrained by a lack of available workers. Over one-third of employers reported that they were experiencing a shortage of skilled applicants. The percentage of employers reporting they will hire new full-time employees has dropped by six percent. And employers are continuing to balance a desire for experience and education with the need to maintain a pipeline of candidates in a low unemployment economy. We partnered with three local organizations to understand who is being left behind in our full-employment economy, why, and what employers and community partners are doing to eliminate those gaps.
See all State of St. Louis reports.

Download the 2018 Report

For 2018, the survey and report focused on three industry sectors that are of critical importance to our economy. Information Technology is represented by Technology-Intensive Services, employing more than 140,000 workers in the region, many of whom utilize information technology skills in their work. Average wages exceed $90,000. Financial Services has become an important factor in the changing profile of the economy with first- and second-tier corporate locations established in St. Louis. Health Care – with nearly 165,000 employees – provided a crucial employment lifeline during the difficult recession years and continues to grow to serve an aging population. More than half of the job postings for health care are for middle-skill jobs. The 2018 State of the St. Louis Workforce Report reflects a growing local economy but with a constricted labor market supply due to low unemployment, an aging workforce and static labor force participation that may eventually constrain future growth.
See all State of St. Louis reports and infographic summaries.

Download the 2017 Report

Our survey of nearly 1,100 employers from fifteen industry sectors represents a composite of the St. Louis regional economy. This year's theme is “Right in the middle: Skills at the center of the St. Louis economy.” It focuses particular attention on middle-skill jobs, those that require education or training beyond high school but not a four-year degree. Individuals can prepare for these jobs in a variety of ways including community college degrees and certificates, industry recognized credentials, and formal and informal apprenticeships.
See all State of St. Louis reports and infographic summaries.

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