The Roanoke Region’s workforce represents a range of talent combined with top-quality training. Our labor draw extends far beyond the boundaries of the region, attracting workers from areas within a 60-mile radius. That means the total labor supply consists of more than 300,000 people. And, with a high concentration of colleges and universities and training programs, new highly-skilled people are joining the workforce all the time. It’s no wonder why businesses from all over the world choose the Roanoke Region for business.
- Low unionization and practically non-existent work disruptions due to labor disputes; Virginia is a right-to-work state.
- Consistently low absenteeism.
- With more than 6,000 high school and 25,000 college graduates annually, highly educated and skilled workers are constantly entering the labor force.
- As a leader in high tech research, innovation, and development, Virginia Tech is educating students in new technology and information fields.
- Nationally recognized workforce training and retraining programs and training facilities available.
Companies in the Roanoke Region draw from over 300,000 workers within a 60-mile radius. Workers in the area are educated, skilled, and productive. And with 25 colleges and more than 100,000 students pursuing degrees in the region, new members of the workforce bring the skills and knowledge needed for industries in the 21st century.
The Roanoke Region labor supply includes the immediate region as well as Bedford City and County, Lexington, Buena Vista, Rockbridge County, Montgomery County, Pulaski County, Floyd County, Martinsville, Patrick County, and Henry County.
|Roanoke Region Population (2021)||330,199|
|Labor Area Total Population (2021)||649,097|
|Labor Force-Supply Area (12/22)||322.746|
|Total Unemployed Persons-Labor Supply Area (12/22)||9,658
|Unemployment Rate (Roanoke MSA-12/22)||2.6%|
|Underemployment Estimate (2021)||24%|
|Annual High School Graduates (19-20)||6,700|
|Annual Two-Year Graduates (20-21)||2,099|
|Annual Four-Year Degree and Higher Graduates (20-21)||36,704|
Alleghany Highlands Submarket
Franklin County Submarket
Roanoke MSA Educational Attainment
Testimony to the well-educated workforce is more than half of the region’s population over the age 25 has at least some college education. More than a third has either an associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree, or both.
|High School Diploma/GED or higher||90.5%|
|Some college, no degree||19.7%|
|Associate's or bachelor's degree||28.2%|
|Graduate or professional degree||10.6%|
Workers are distributed among a diversity of occupations. The Virginia Employment Commission estimates more than 3,700 jobs will be created between 2018 and 2028, which means an increase in skilled job seekers and businesses seeking workers.
|Occupation Title||2018||2028 (projected)||Change (projected)|
|Administrative and Support||10,279||10,343||.6%|
|Ambulatory Health Care Services||8,053||9,651||19.8%|
|Business Support Services||1,448||1,538||6.2%|
|Computer Systems Design||2,720||3,696||35.9%|
|Construction of Buildings||1,727||2,012||16.5%|
|Health and Education Services||37,563||40,373||7.5%|
|Food Prep, and Drinking Places||12,530||13,262||5.8%|
|Insurance Carriers and Related||3,505||3,686||5.2%|
|Leisure and Hospitality||15,728||16,479||5.0%|
|Management, Scientific, and Technical||481||544||13.1%|
|Medical and Diagnostic Labs||513||728||41.9%|
|Nursing and Residential Care Facilities||5,262||5,492||12.9%|
|Professional and Business Services||23,363||24,314||4.1%|
|Professional, Scientific, and Technical||7,838||8,941||14.1%|
|Trade, Transportation, and Utilties||34,018||33,056||-2.8|
|Warehousing and Storage||1546||1651||6.8|