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North Central Illinois Regional Analysis

The objective of the regional analysis was to analyze demographic and business trends and characteristics of the region, and ultimately identify industry clusters, or concentrations of competing, complementary, and/or interdependent firms and industries which conduct business with each other and/or have common needs for talent, technology, and infrastructure.

The NIU CGS analysis of the region identified five high potential industry clusters.  These clusters are compatible with the existing or proposed land use, zoning, and infrastructure capacity of the development area.  The five clusters identified and analyzed were:

  • Agribusiness, Food Processing and Technology
  • Energy (Conventional and Renewable)
  • Machinery Manufacturing
  • Mining
  • Transportation and Logistics

The analysis and recommendations may be used to develop strategies and marketing for the region; benefit existing, expanding , and new industries; as well as enhance the workforce.

5-County Labor Availability Report

In August 2014 The Pathfinders completed a Labor Availability Report for NCICG which included the counties of Bureau, LaSalle, Marshall, Putnam and Stark.

Key findings of the report include:

  • The North Central Illinois 5-County area, referred to in this report as the “labor shed”, has a household population of approximately 170,100; a civilian labor force of approximately 87,100; and a pool of approximately 9,400 unemployed persons who are actively seeking work.
  • The results of this survey indicate that a new or expanding employer will be able to attract employees from an additional pool of about 16,300 underemployed workers.
  • The median current pay rate of the underemployed workers in the labor shed is $18.00 per hour, and their median desired pay rate is $19.75 per hour.
  • Results indicate that underemployed workers are willing to commute an average of 31 miles to a new job, in contrast to their current average commute of 17 miles.
  • Survey results indicate 23% of the underemployed and 21% of unemployed, actively seeking work individuals in the labor shed have bachelor degrees or higher.
  • The median desired pay rate of the unemployed workers who are actively seeking work is $12.00 per hour.
  • In total, the North Central Illinois 5-County area has approximately 25,700 available workers for new or expanding businesses.

This report and an associated presentation given by NIU Center for Governmental Studies last fall is available for download at the bottom of the page.

We hope that this report will be a benefit to your community and feel free to use it as needed for your community and economic development efforts.

NCI Labor Availability Presentation

North Central Illinois Regional Analysis Presentation 031015

North Central Illinois Regional Analysis

NCI 5-County Labor Availability Report