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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

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Occupational Employment and Wages for Selected Engineering Occupations in South Carolina's Metropolitan Areas – May 2010


Among the 10 metropolitan areas in South Carolina in May 2010, Augusta-Richmond County was the only area to have annual wages significantly above the national average for both industrial and mechanical engineers, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Wages for industrial engineers in Florence and mechanical engineers in Greenville-Mauldin-Easley were not significantly different than the U.S. averages for those occupations. Regional Commissioner Janet S. Rankin noted that there were five areas with wages falling measurably below those for the nation in all three selected occupations. Nationwide, mechanical engineers earned an average (mean) of $82,840, civil engineers earned $82,280, and industrial engineers earned $78,450. (See table A. For comprehensive definitions of metropolitan areas in South Carolina, please see Technical Note.)

Table A. Average (mean) annual wages for selected engineering occupations in the United States and metropolitan areas in South Carolina, May 2010
Area Civil engineers Industrial engineers Mechanical engineers

United States

$82,280 $78,450 $82,480

South Carolina

75,090* 74,450* 80,920*

Anderson

72,430* 76,830* 78,720*

Augusta-Richmond County, Ga.-S.C.

-- 90,160* 101,490*

Charleston-North Charleston-Summerville

71,850* 72,590* 70,040*

Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord, N.C.-S.C.

75,860* 73,820* 79,810*

Columbia

67,420* 74,850* 71,840*

Florence

56,790* 71,690 75,840*

Greenville-Mauldin-Easley

73,870* 75,380* 84,890

Myrtle Beach-North Myrtle Beach-Conway

68,280* -- --

Spartanburg

73,550* 68,750* 71,090*

Sumter

-- 63,240* 69,790*

Footnotes:
(*) The mean annual wage for this area is significantly different from the national average of all areas at the 90-percent confidence level.
(--) Estimate not released.


Of the 10 metropolitan areas located entirely or partially in the state, Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord had the most civil engineers (1,620) and Greenville-Mauldin-Easley had the most industrial engineers (1,000) and mechanical engineers (2,050). Together, these three occupations in Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord accounted for nearly 30 percent of the selected engineering jobs in South Carolina. Greenville-Mauldin-Easley was the only other area where combined employment in the three selected occupations exceeded 3,000. (See table B.)

Table B. Employment for selected engineering occupations in the United States and metropolitan areas in South Carolina, May 2010
Area Civil engineers Industrial engineers Mechanical engineers

United States

249,120 202,990 234,400

South Carolina

4,190 4,620 4,600

Anderson

50 350 70

Augusta-Richmond County, Ga.-S.C.

1,230 560 630

Charleston-North Charleston-Summerville

710 770 730

Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord, N.C.-S.C.

1,620 850 1,450

Columbia

890 550 330

Florence

80 160 70

Greenville-Mauldin-Easley

630 1,000 2,050

Myrtle Beach-North Myrtle Beach-Conway

80 -- --

Spartanburg

90 340 240

Sumter

-- 60 60

Footnotes:
(--) Estimate not released.


Wages for civil engineers in metropolitan areas in South Carolina

Eight of the metropolitan areas had significantly lower wages than the national average for civil engineers. Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord was the highest-paying metropolitan area in South Carolina for civil engineers at $75,860, followed by Greenville-Mauldin-Easley ($73,870), and Spartanburg ($73,500). Florence ($56,790) registered the lowest wage in this occupation, more than $25,000 below the national average. The metropolitan areas with below-average wages for civil engineers were spread geographically throughout the State. (See chart 1.)


Chart 1. Mean annual wages for civil engineers by area, South Carolina, May 2010


Wages for industrial engineers in metropolitan areas in South Carolina

The Augusta-Richmond County metropolitan area paid the highest annual wage ($90,160) in the State for industrial engineers and was the only area with a wage measurably higher than the national average for this occupation. The wage for industrial engineers in Florence was not significantly different than the national average, while seven other areas had below-average wages for this occupation. At the bottom of the wage scale, industrial engineers in Sumter were paid $63,240 annually, about $15,000 below the U.S. average. For industrial engineers, the metropolitan areas with below-average wages were spread geographically throughout the State. (See chart 2.)


Chart 2. Mean annual wages for industrial engineers by area, South Carolina, May 2010


Wages for mechanical engineers in metropolitan areas in South Carolina

At $101,490, Augusta-Richmond County was the highest-paying metropolitan area in South Carolina for mechanical engineers, significantly higher than the national average. The average annual wage for Greenville-Mauldin-Easley, at $84,890, was the second-highest among the 10 metropolitan areas, close to the national average. Mechanical engineers in Sumter were paid the least among the metropolitan areas in the State at $69,790. The metropolitan areas with mechanical engineers recording wages below the national average were spread geographically throughout the State. (See chart 3.)


Chart 3. Mean annual wages for mechanical engineers by area, South Carolina, May 2010


These statistics are from the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) survey, a federal-state cooperative program between the BLS and State Workforce Agencies, in this case, the Department of Employment and Workforce in South Carolina. The OES survey provides estimates of employment and hourly and annual wages for wage and salary workers in 22 major occupational groups and nearly 800 non-military detailed occupations for the nation, states, metropolitan statistical areas, metropolitan divisions, and nonmetropolitan areas.

OES wage and employment data for civil, industrial, and mechanical engineers in the state and metropolitan areas were compared to their respective national averages based on statistical significance testing. Only those occupations with wages or employment shares above or below the national wage or share after testing for significance at the 90-percent confidence level meet the criteria.

NOTE: A value that is statistically different from another does not necessarily mean that the difference has economic or practical significance. Statistical significance is concerned with the ability to make confident statements about a universe based on a sample. It is entirely possible that a large difference between values is not significantly different statistically, while a small difference is, since both the size and heterogeneity of the sample affect the relative error of the data being tested.

Technical Note

The Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) survey is a semiannual mail survey measuring occupational employment and wage rates for wage and salary workers in nonfarm establishments in the United States. OES estimates are constructed from a sample of about 1.2 million establishments. Forms are mailed to approximately 200,000 establishments in May and November of each year for a 3-year period. The nationwide response rate for the May 2010 estimates was 78.2 percent based on establishments and 74.4 percent based on employment. May 2010 estimates are based on responses from six semiannual periods collected over a 3-year period: May 2010, November 2009, May 2009, November 2008, May 2008, and November 2007. For more information about OES concepts and methodology, go to www.bls.gov/news.release/ocwage.tn.htm.

The May 2010 OES estimates mark the first set of estimates based in part on data collected using the 2010 Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) system. Nearly all the occupations in this release are 2010 SOC occupations; however, some are not. The May 2012 OES data will reflect the full set of detailed occupations in the 2010 SOC. For a list of all occupations, including 2010 SOC occupations, and how data are collected on two structures were combined, see the OES Frequently Asked Questions online at www.bls.gov/oes/oes_ques.htm#Ques41.

OES data by state and metropolitan/nonmetropolitan area are available from www.bls.gov/oes/current/oessrcst.htm and www.bls.gov/oes/current/oessrcma.htm, respectively.

Metropolitan area definitions

The substate area data published in this release reflect the standards and definitions established by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget.

Anderson, S.C. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Anderson County in South Carolina.

Augusta-Richmond County, Ga.-S.C. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Burke, Columbia, McDuffie, and Richmond Counties in Georgia and Aiken and Edgefield Counties in South Carolina.

Charleston-North Charleston-Summerville, S.C. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Berkeley, Charleston, and Dorchester Counties in South Carolina.

Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord, N.C.-S.C. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Anson, Cabarrus, Gaston, Mecklenburg, and Union Counties in North Carolina and York County in South Carolina.

Columbia, S.C. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Calhoun, Fairfield, Kershaw, Lexington, Richland, and Saluda Counties in South Carolina.

Florence, S.C. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Darlington and Florence Counties in South Carolina.

Greenville-Mauldin-Easley, S.C. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Greenville, Laurens, and Pickens Counties in South Carolina.

Myrtle Beach-North Myrtle Beach-Conway, S.C. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Horry County in South Carolina.

Spartanburg, S.C. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Spartanburg County in South Carolina.

Sumter, S.C. Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Sumter County in South Carolina.

Additional information

OES data are available on the Southeast regional web page at www.bls.gov/ro4/home.htm. If you have additional questions, contact the Southeast Economic Analysis and Information Office at 404-893-4222 during the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. ET. Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: 202-691-5200; TDD message referral phone number: 1-800-877-8339.

 

Last Modified Date: September 20, 2011