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Labor Statistics

Building a Strong Workforce with Labor Supply and Training Opportunities

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The 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, retraining programs, and training facilities are available.
  • Dedicated, in-house talent attraction brand, Get2KnowNoke, to support both talent and businesses.

Labor Force

Roanoke Region Population (2023)328,707
Labor Area Total Population (2022)650,578
Labor Force-Supply Area (2017-2021)313,142
Total Unemployed Persons-Labor Supply Area (2017-2021)12,790
Unemployment Rate (Roanoke MSA-12/23)2.7%
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
Sources: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Census, Weldon Cooper for Public Service (UVA), Center State Council for Higher Education, VA Dept. of Education, Chmura Economics and Analytics, VEDP (EMSI) Underemployment estimates.

Alleghany Highlands Submarket

The Alleghany Highlands labor force area consists of the cities of Buena Vista, Covington, and Lexington; the counties of Alleghany, Bath, Botetourt, Craig, and Rockbridge, and the West Virginia counties of Greenbrier, Monroe, and Pocahontas. Chmura Economics and Analytics-October 2022
Labor Force74,609
Unemployment Rate3.6%

Franklin County Submarket

Labor Force267,846
Unemployment Rate3.2%
The Franklin County labor force area consists of the cities of Martinsville, Roanoke, and Salem; the counties of Bedford, Botetourt, Franklin, Henry, Patrick, and Roanoke, and Rockingham County, North Carolina. Chmura Economics and Analytics-October 2022

Roanoke MSA Educational Attainment

High School Diploma/GED or higher90.5%
Some college, no degree19.7%
Associate’s or bachelor’s degree28.2%
Graduate or professional degree10.6%
Source: U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey, 5 year-2020 Estimates.

Occupation Distribution

Occupation Title20182028 (projected)Change (projected)
Administrative and Support10,27910,343.6%
Ambulatory Health Care Services8,0539,65119.8%
Architectural, Engineering 1,3031,249-4.1%
Business Support Services1,4481,5386.2%
Computer Systems Design 2,7203,69635.9%
Construction of Buildings1,7272,01216.5%
Health and Education Services37,56340,3737.5%
Financial Activities7,9748,1562.3%
Food Prep, and Drinking Places12,53013,2625.8%
Insurance Carriers and Related3,5053,6865.2%
Leisure and Hospitality15,72816,4795.0%
Management, Scientific, and Technical48154413.1%
Medical and Diagnostic Labs51372841.9%
Nursing and Residential Care Facilities5,2625,49212.9%
Professional and Business Services23,36324,3144.1%
Professional, Scientific, and Technical7,8388,94114.1%
Trade, Transportation, and Utilties34,01833,056-2.8
Truck Transportation
Warehousing and Storage154616516.8
Source: VEC, Occupational Projections, LWIA III 2018-2028

Grow your people and your business

Workforce development can make all the difference in helping your business thrive. In the Roanoke Region, you have access to unparalleled resources like Get2KnowNoke, Greater Workforce Development Board, Community Colleges, and Virginia Economic Development Partners. In other words, you have everything you need to ensure your employees grow alongside your business.

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Learn More about the Roanoke Region of Virginia