Fargo ranked No. 1 for job seekers
Fargo and Bismarck have been named the top two cities among 15 chosen by CareerBuilder.com as a "great" place for job seekers. Fargo took top billing with a 1.5 percent unemployment rate and $32,580 mean annual wage. Bismarck placed second, posti...
Fargo and Bismarck have been named the top two cities among 15 chosen by CareerBuilder.com as a "great" place for job seekers.
Fargo took top billing with a 1.5 percent unemployment rate and $32,580 mean annual wage.
Bismarck placed second, posting a 1.9 percent unemployment rate and mean wage average of $31,580.
The article by CareerBuilder.com writer Meg Donohue featured 15 cities with unemployment rates below the 4.5 percent national average, based on 2006 figures provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
"It confirms what we've been hearing and seeing from state business leaders, " said North Dakota Commerce Commissioner Shane Goettle.
Efforts to create "great jobs" in North Dakota have tightened the labor market and driven up wages, he said.
"It's an indication of the healthy nature of our current economy," said Brian Walters, president of the Greater Fargo Moorhead Economic Development Corporation.
"We've been ahead of pace in job creation," he said, producing a local economy that has more opportunities at this point than workers.
Fargo has had the lowest unemployment rate in the U.S. for the last three months and consistently during the past two years, Walters said.
"That statistic alone shows that it's a great market for potential employees," he said.
"That's evidence that we can grow the economy even in face of a tight labor market," Goettle said. "This is a good problem to have from an economic standpoint."
Fargo has also had income growth exceeding the national average for the past five years and again in 2006, Walters said.
The CareerBuilder.com article listed education, health and social service comprising the largest percentage of the Fargo workforce at 22.8 percent.
In Bismarck, agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting, and mining reflected the highest workforce percentage at 32.7 percent.
"We must be doing something right," said Russ Staiger, president of the Bismarck-Mandan Development Association.
Both cities tend to rank high on several types of lists that are released by various organizations, he said.
"That says a lot about the communities and state and the efforts they are putting forth to make us quality communities," Staiger said.
It wasn't long ago, Goettle said, that North Dakota was creating jobs to keep people in the state.
"Now we've transitioned to having to bring people in from outside the state," to fill positions in the existing job market, he said.
Readers can reach Forum Business Editor
Craig McEwen at (701) 241-5502