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18.5 million office and administrative support jobs in May 2023, 12.2 percent of total employment

April 15, 2024

Office and administrative support was the largest occupational group in May 2023, with about 18.5 million jobs. The largest office and administrative support occupations were customer service representatives (2.9 million), general office clerks (2.5 million), and secretaries and administrative assistants, except legal, medical, and executive (1.8 million).

Office and administrative support occupations had an annual mean wage of $47,940, below the U.S. mean wage of $65,470 for all occupations. Only two office and administrative support occupations had above-average wages: executive secretaries and executive administrative assistants ($73,680) and first-line supervisors of office and administrative support workers ($68,620). The lowest paying office and administrative support occupations were hotel, motel, and resort desk clerks ($32,570) and clerical library assistants ($35,970).

More than 960,000 office and administrative support jobs were found in local government, excluding schools and hospitals. After local government, the industries with the largest employment in office and administrative support occupations were credit intermediation and related activities (842,450) and offices of physicians (759,630).

Industries with the highest employment and concentrations of employment in office and administrative support occupations, May 2023

Industries with the highest employment in office and administrative support occupations, May 2023
Industry Employment

Local government, excluding schools and hospitals

961,360

Credit intermediation and related activities (NAICS 5221 and 5223 only)

842,450

Offices of physicians

759,630

General medical and surgical hospitals

614,320

Postal service (federal government)

552,400

Management of companies and enterprises

547,900

Elementary and secondary schools

508,760

Employment services

495,420

Business support services

446,280

Agencies, brokerages, and other insurance related activities

428,630

Industries with the highest concentrations of employment in office and administrative support occupations, May 2023
Industry Concentration (in percent)

Postal service (federal government)

87.3

Business support services

59.4

Freight transportation arrangement

47.8

Credit intermediation and related activities (NAICS 5221 and 5223 only)

41.3

Office administrative services

36.8

Nondepository credit intermediation

34.0

Agencies, brokerages, and other insurance related activities

32.3

Insurance and employee benefit funds

31.7

Offices of dentists

29.2

Accounting, tax preparation, bookkeeping, and payroll services

28.8

All industries

12.2

Office and administrative support occupations made up 87.3 percent of employment in the U.S. Postal Service, compared with 12.2 percent of overall employment. Three occupations specific to the postal service are in this occupational group: postal service clerks; postal service mail carriers; and postal service mail sorters, processors, and processing machine operators. Also among the industries with the highest concentrations of office and administrative support workers were business support services (which includes call centers, document preparation services, and collection agencies), with 59.4 percent of employment in these occupations, and freight transportation arrangement, with 47.8 percent.

Highest and lowest paying industries for office and administrative support occupations, May 2023
Industry Annual mean wage (in dollars)

Pipeline transportation of crude oil

79,030

Other pipeline transportation

76,920

Natural gas distribution

70,650

Metal ore mining

70,000

Support activities for water transportation

68,340

All industries

47,940

Traveler accommodation

36,110

Gasoline stations

35,740

Other amusement and recreation industries

34,770

Rooming and boarding houses, dormitories, and workers' camps

34,540

Personal care services

33,440

Several of the highest paying industries for office and administrative support occupations were related to extracting, transporting, and distributing natural resources, including pipeline transportation of crude oil ($79,030), other pipeline transportation ($76,920), natural gas distribution ($70,650), and metal ore mining ($70,000). The lowest paying industries for this group included personal care services ($33,440), such as hair, nail, and skin care, and rooming and boarding houses, dormitories, and workers' camps ($34,540).

These data are from the Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics program. To learn more, see "Occupational Employment and Wages — 2023." Also see the May 2023 national occupational employment and wage estimates by industry and the occupational profile for office and administrative support occupations.

SUGGESTED CITATION

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, 18.5 million office and administrative support jobs in May 2023, 12.2 percent of total employment at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2024/18-5-million-office-and-administrative-support-jobs-in-may-2023-12-2-percent-of-total-employment.htm (visited May 18, 2024).

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