Yakima County Development Association - Labor Force

Labor Force

An available, hardworking labor force is an invaluable asset for businesses that are expanding in Yakima County. Tax credit and on-the-job training programs are available for these firms, and they are especially beneficial for companies new to the area:

 

A SIZABLE LABOR MARKET

Yakima County’s total non agricultural employment in 2012 was 125,257. The labor force fluctuates throughout the year due largely to seasonal agricultural activity and ranged in size from 118,489 to 135,363 in 2013. The average unemployment rate for 2013 was 9.2%, which represents an average of approximately 11,500 people monthly looking for work.

Overall, Yakima County's median age (2013 estimates) is 32.55. For men the median age is 31.63 and for women it is 33.96.
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POSITIVE EMPLOYMENT TRENDS

Yakima County’s employment outlook has been one of continued growth. From 2012-2014, jobs have increased by 8,760 in the county.
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AN AVAILABLE LABOR FORCE

With its strong stable economy Yakima County continues to experience significant labor force growth. A strong concentration of both males and females in the 15 to 34 year old age group account for a good portion of that growth.
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COMPETITIVE WAGE RATES

Lower prevailing wage rates are the norm for a vast majority of occupations, particularly when compared to other parts of the state, region, and nation.
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COMPARATIVE MEDIAN WAGE

OccupationYakima MSASpokane MSASeattle MSARichland - Pasco - Kennewick MSA
Industrial Production Manager $37.65 $37.90 $53.73 $44.10
Transportation/Distribution Manager $46.36 $39.08 $50.52 $49.55
1st Line Supervisor/Production $22.56 $25.28 $33.52 $25.68
1st Line Supervisor/Transportation $23.77 $26.98 $32.48 $25.72
Human Resources $25.19 $24.96 $35.73 $28.26
Machinist $20.58 $18.36 $24.81 $24.33
Team Assemblers/Production $12.78 $14.20 $15.87 $13.77
Helpers/Production $12.08 $12.41 $12.89 $11.88
Maintenance & Repair $20.20 $16.49 $25.58 $23.37
Truck Driver/Heavy Trailer $16.54 $19.70 $21.75 $20.11
Shipping/Receiving Clerk $14.87 $14.45 $17.86 $13.42
Material Mover $12.71 $13.38 $16.07 $15.82
Bookkeeping/Accounting Clerks $17.85 $17.42 $20.39 $18.01
Office Clerks $14.79 $14.21 $15.80 $15.07
Customer Service Representatives $14.94 $16.50 $18.41 $15.59

(2013 wage data)

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"The reason Valley Processing is located in the Yakima Valley is because of the close proximity to fruit, good transportation infrastructure, and a good workforce. " - Terry Bliesner, Vice President, Valley Processing