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2020 Jobs Outlook

Preparing Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky workers for tomorrow’s jobs requires knowing what jobs and professions will be growing and what skills will be in high demand. The 2020 Jobs Outlook takes much of the guesswork out of the equation. The outlook has two components: an executive summary in print form and additional data sets on more than 800 job titles, with information about wages and salaries, number of jobs, and skills, education, and experience required to qualify for each job. For more information please contact Kara Williams at

The 2020 Jobs Outlook forecasts where the jobs will be in 2020 and ranks our region’s total projected jobs against our peer regions. This report is a valuable directional guide for targeting our job creation and workforce preparation efforts to accelerate growth in our regional economy.

Agenda 360, Vision 2015 along with the Strive Partnership and Partners for a Competitive Workforce produced this report because we know that skilled talent drives regional economic prosperity. Yet our region has consistently ranked in the bottom third on educational attainment rates when compared to the peer regions in the Regional Indicators Report.

The 2020 Jobs Outlook shows that jobs related to health care, education, business, finance and technology are expected to be the fastest growing and best paying in the region. The report also shows that the local economy is expected to add at least 106,000 net new jobs by 2020, and that our total number of jobs should be nearly 1.1 million.

The 2020 Jobs Outlook was prepared by the Center for Economic Analysis and Development at Northern Kentucky University and the Institute for Policy Research at the University of Cincinnati using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Key Insights From 2020 Jobs Outlook Report

  • Education or training beyond high school is required for well-paying jobs.
  • Among jobs paying $33,130 or more, nine of 10 will require some combination of post-secondary education, on-the-job training, and/or work experience beyond one year. Of these higher-paying jobs, 31% will require a bachelor’s degree or higher.
  • Our economy is projected to add a minimum of 106,115 net new jobs by 2020. Combining those net new jobs with 232,517 replacement jobs, the Cincinnati region is projected to have 338,632 job openings over the decade between 2010 and 2020. By 2020, our region will have total employment of 1,069,405 jobs—ranking us fifth among our peer regions.
  • Healthcare practitioners; education-related occupations; business and financial occupations; and computer and mathematical occupations are the only major occupational groups that are projected to be fast-growing (more than 2% a year) and well-paying (median wage above $33,130), and to have a significant number of jobs in 2020 (more than 30,000). These four occupational groups represent one in every five jobs in the Greater Cincinnati economy.
  • Production (such as manufacturing) occupations are projected to grow by 2.9% and will represent our region’s sixth-largest occupational group with over 70,000 jobs that pay near the median wage.
  • Construction and installation and maintenance and repair occupations pay above the median wage and are projected to grow, to roughly 31,000 and 37,500 jobs, respectively.
  • Some of Greater Cincinnati’s largest occupational groups, such as office and administrative; sales; and food service, pay below the median wage of $33,130 per year.