Study reveals cities with the fastest aging workforces

Analysis also highlights the areas with the most millennials in the labor market

Posted February 7, 2017

Is your city’s workforce growing older or younger? A new study explores employment trends for the 100 most populous U.S. cities, tracking how the shares of workers ages 22 to 34 and ages 55 and older have changed from 2001 to 2016.

According to the CareerBuilder study, the city aging the fastest is North Port, Florida, while Madison, Wisconsin, takes the lead for cities that are experiencing the biggest infusion of millennials into their workforce.

“Whether they are motivated by financial reasons or personal choice, people are staying in the workforce longer,” said Matt Ferguson, CEO of CareerBuilder and co-author of The Talent Equation. “At some point those workers and their intellectual capital will retire, so a city with a workforce that is aging at a faster rate needs to ensure it is attracting an adequate supply of new talent to fill the gap and fuel economic growth. While big cities have broad appeal, younger generations are also gravitating toward second tier markets with diverse economies, a strong technology presence and affordable cost of living.”

Summary of key trends

Cities aging the fastest since 2001

City

Total Population in 2016

Share of Workers Ages 55+ in 2016

Change in Share of Workers Ages 55+ from 2001 to 2016

North Port, FL

779,799

25.8%

1.5%

Oklahoma City, OK

1,376,790

21.0%

1.5%

Virginia Beach, VA

1,734,618

19.5%

1.3%

Sacramento, CA

2,296,511

21.2%

1.3%

Spokane, WA

551,091

21.7%

1.3%

Cities growing younger the fastest since 2001

City

Total Population in 2016

Share of Workers Ages 22-34 in 2016

Change in Share of Workers Ages 22-34 from 2001 to 2016

Madison, WI

647,860

30.3%

3.1%

El Paso, TX

847,282

32.3%

2.1%

Colorado Springs, CO

707,073

31.6%

2.0%

Allentown, PA

835,117

26.2%

1.7%

Austin, TX

2,051,270

32.3%

1.6%

Cities with the biggest decreases in millennial workers since 2011

City

Total Population in 2016

Share of Workers Ages 22-34 in 2016

Change in Share of Workers Ages 22-34 from 2001 to 2016

Tucson, AZ

1,016,717

29.1%

-0.2%

San Diego, CA

3,338,449

31.9%

-0.2%

Urban Honolulu, HI

1,006,973

30.8%

-0.2%

Bakersfield, CA

891,750

29.9%

-0.1%

Toledo, OH

605,122

28.1%

-0.1%

The study is based on data from Emsi, CareerBuilder’s labor market analysis arm, which pulls information from nearly 100 national, state, and local employment resources.


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