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News Release Information

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Contacts Technical information: Media contact:
  • (312) 353-1138

Occupational Employment and Wages in Elgin — May 2015

Workers in the Elgin Metropolitan Division had an average (mean) hourly wage of $22.60 in May 2015, comparable to the nationwide average of $23.23, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Assistant Commissioner for Regional Operations Charlene Peiffer noted that, after testing for statistical significance, wages in the local area were higher than their respective national averages in 6 of the 22 major occupational groups, including construction and extraction; protective service; and healthcare support. Six groups had significantly lower wages than their respective national averages, including management; business and financial operations; and architecture and engineering.

When compared to the nationwide distribution, local employment was more highly concentrated in 4 of the 22 occupational groups, including production; transportation and material moving; and education, training, and library. Conversely, 13 groups had employment shares significantly below their national representation, including sales and related; business and financial operations; and computer and mathematical. (See table A and box note at end of release.)

Table A. Occupational employment and wages by major occupational group, United States and the Elgin Metropolitan Division, and measures of statistical significance, May 2015
Major occupational group Percent of total employment Mean hourly wage
United States Elgin United States Elgin Percent difference (1)

Total, all occupations

100.0% 100.0% $23.23 $22.60 -3


5.0 5.8* 55.30 49.47* -11

Business and Financial Operations

5.1 3.4* 35.48 30.05* -15

Computer and Mathematical

2.9 1.8* 41.43 37.13* -10

Architecture and Engineering

1.8 1.5* 39.89 34.99* -12

Life, Physical, and Social Science

0.8 0.5* 34.24 33.45 -2

Community and Social Services

1.4 1.4 22.19 23.55 6


0.8 0.3* 49.74 42.47 -15

Education, Training, and Library

6.2 8.3* 25.48 28.39 11

Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media

1.3 0.8* 27.39 22.94* -16

Healthcare Practitioner and Technical

5.8 5.1* 37.40 35.70 -5

Healthcare Support

2.9 2.3* 14.19 15.65* 10

Protective Service

2.4 2.1* 21.45 26.31* 23

Food Preparation and Serving Related

9.1 8.2* 10.98 10.59* -4

Building and Grounds Cleaning and Maintenance

3.2 2.6* 13.02 13.94* 7

Personal Care and Service

3.1 3.2 12.33 13.31* 8

Sales and Related

10.5 8.8* 18.90 19.60 4

Office and Administrative Support

15.8 15.2 17.47 17.75 2

Farming, Fishing, and Forestry

0.3 0.2* 12.67 12.48 -1

Construction and Extraction

4.0 4.1 22.88 30.36* 33

Installation, Maintenance, and Repair

3.9 3.5 22.11 23.53* 6


6.6 11.3* 17.41 17.00 -2

Transportation and Material Moving

6.9 9.8* 16.90 15.67 -7

(1) A positive percent difference measures how much the mean wage in Elgin is above the national mean wage, while a negative difference reflects a lower wage.
* The percent share of employment or mean hourly wage for this area is significantly different from the national average of all areas at the 90-percent confidence level.

One occupational group—production—was chosen to illustrate the diversity of data available for any of the 22 major occupational categories. Elgin had 28,330 jobs in production, accounting for 11.3 percent of local area employment, significantly higher than the 6.6-percent share nationally. The average hourly wage for this occupational group locally was $17.00, compared to the national wage of $17.41.

Some of the larger detailed occupations within the production group included machinists (1,870); first-line supervisors of production and operating workers (1,670); and helpers--production workers (1,400). Among the higher paying jobs were stationary engineers and boiler operators ($38.29) and first-line supervisors of production and operating workers ($28.13). At the lower end of the wage scale were laundry and dry-cleaning workers ($10.29) and butchers and meat cutters ($11.59). (Detailed occupational data for production are presented in table 1; for a complete listing of detailed occupations available go to .)

Location quotients allow us to explore the occupational make-up of a metropolitan area by comparing the composition of jobs in an area relative to the national average. (See table 1.) For example, a location quotient of 2.0 indicates that an occupation accounts for twice the share of employment in the area than it does nationally. In the Elgin Metropolitan Division, above-average concentrations of employment were found in some of the occupations within the production group. For instance, multiple machine tool setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic were employed at 3.4 times the national rate in Elgin, and machinists, at 2.6 times the U.S. average. On the other hand, water and wastewater treatment plant and system operators had a location quotient of 1.0 in Elgin, indicating that this particular occupation’s local and national employment shares were similar.

These statistics are from the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) survey, a federal-state cooperative program between BLS and State Workforce Agencies, in this case, the Illinois Department of Employment Security.

Notes on Occupational Employment Statistics Data

With the issuance of data for May 2015, the OES program has incorporated redefined metropolitan area definitions as designated by the Office of Management and Budget. OES data are available for 394 metropolitan areas, 38 metropolitan divisions, and 167 OES-defined nonmetropolitan areas. A listing of the areas and their definitions can be found at

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 two 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. The OES program produces employment and wage estimates for over 800 occupations for all industries combined in the nation; the 50 states and the District of Columbia; 432 metropolitan areas and divisions; 167 nonmetropolitan areas; and Guam, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. National estimates are also available by industry for NAICS sectors, 3-, 4-, and selected 5- and 6-digit industries, and by ownership across all industries and for schools and hospitals. OES data are available at

OES estimates are constructed from a sample of about 1.2 million establishments. Forms are mailed to approximately 200,000 sampled establishments in May and November each year. May 2015 estimates are based on responses from six semiannual panels collected over a 3-year period: May 2015, November 2014, May 2014, November 2013, May 2013, and November 2012. The overall national response rate for the six panels is 73.5 percent based on establishments and 69.6 percent based on weighted sampled employment. The unweighted employment of sampled establishments across all six semiannual panels represents approximately 57.9 percent of total national employment. (Response rates are slightly lower for these estimates due to the federal shutdown in October 2013.) The sample in the Elgin Metropolitan Division included 1,367 establishments with a response rate of 65 percent. For more information about OES concepts and methodology, go to

The May 2015 OES estimates are based on the 2010 Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) system and the 2012 North American Industry Classification System (NAICS). Information about the 2010 SOC is available on the BLS website at and information about the 2012 NAICS is available at

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.

The Elgin, Ill. Metropolitan Division includes DeKalb and Kane Counties.

Additional information

OES data are available on our regional web page at Answers to frequently asked questions about the OES data are available at Detailed technical information about the OES survey is available in our Survey Methods and Reliability Statement on the BLS website at

Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request . Voice phone: 202-691-5200; Federal Relay Service: 800-877-8339.

Table 1. Employment and wage data from the Occupational Employment Statistics survey, by occupation, Elgin Metropolitan Division, May 2015
Occupation (1) Employment Mean wages
Level (2) Location quotient (3) Hourly Annual (4)

Production Occupations

28,330 1.7 $17.00 $35,350

First-Line Supervisors of Production and Operating Workers

1,670 1.5 28.13 58,510

Coil Winders, Tapers, and Finishers

(5) (5) 15.11 31,420

Electrical and Electronic Equipment Assemblers

(5) (5) 13.89 28,890

Engine and Other Machine Assemblers

80 1.1 19.72 41,020

Team Assemblers

(5) (5) 14.48 30,120

Assemblers and Fabricators, All Other

(5) (5) 13.93 28,970


210 0.7 13.37 27,820

Butchers and Meat Cutters

(5) (5) 11.59 24,100

Meat, Poultry, and Fish Cutters and Trimmers

110 0.4 11.69 24,320

Slaughterers and Meat Packers

200 1.4 12.90 26,840

Food and Tobacco Roasting, Baking, and Drying Machine Operators and Tenders

80 2.3 15.32 31,880

Food Batchmakers

190 0.8 13.84 28,780

Food Processing Workers, All Other

30 0.4 11.33 23,570

Computer-Controlled Machine Tool Operators, Metal and Plastic

250 0.9 19.34 40,230

Computer Numerically Controlled Machine Tool Programmers, Metal and Plastic

80 1.7 23.35 48,560

Extruding and Drawing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic

170 1.3 12.54 26,080

Cutting, Punching, and Press Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic

860 2.4 17.18 35,740

Drilling and Boring Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic

30 1.3 14.80 30,790

Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, and Buffing Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic

70 0.5 17.33 36,050

Lathe and Turning Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic

160 2.2 19.57 40,710

Milling and Planing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic

(5) (5) 19.25 40,040


1,870 2.6 16.64 34,610

Molding, Coremaking, and Casting Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic

310 1.3 17.69 36,800

Multiple Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic

650 3.4 15.85 32,960

Tool and Die Makers

290 2.2 26.10 54,300

Welders, Cutters, Solderers, and Brazers

(5) (5) 18.07 37,580

Welding, Soldering, and Brazing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders

(5) (5) 17.81 37,050

Heat Treating Equipment Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic

(5) (5) 14.50 30,150

Plating and Coating Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic

160 2.5 15.05 31,300

Prepress Technicians and Workers

120 1.9 20.82 43,310

Printing Press Operators

500 1.6 19.92 41,440

Print Binding and Finishing Workers

50 0.5 20.34 42,300

Laundry and Dry-Cleaning Workers

(5) (5) 10.29 21,390

Sewing Machine Operators

310 1.2 12.39 25,770

Cabinetmakers and Bench Carpenters

100 0.6 17.17 35,710

Sawing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Wood

(5) (5) 18.18 37,820

Woodworking Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Except Sawing

(5) (5) 14.05 29,230

Stationary Engineers and Boiler Operators

(5) (5) 38.29 79,650

Water and Wastewater Treatment Plant and System Operators

210 1.0 26.55 55,230

Crushing, Grinding, and Polishing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders

(5) (5) 19.98 41,570

Grinding and Polishing Workers, Hand

(5) (5) 13.19 27,430

Mixing and Blending Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders

570 2.4 20.79 43,240

Cutting and Slicing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders

(5) (5) 17.78 36,990

Inspectors, Testers, Sorters, Samplers, and Weighers

(5) (5) 17.34 36,070

Dental Laboratory Technicians

60 0.9 (5) (5)

Packaging and Filling Machine Operators and Tenders

(5) (5) 12.76 26,530

Coating, Painting, and Spraying Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders

290 1.8 14.49 30,130

Molders, Shapers, and Casters, Except Metal and Plastic

(5) (5) 12.95 26,940

Paper Goods Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders

(5) (5) 17.68 36,780

Helpers--Production Workers

1,400 1.8 12.10 25,160

Production Workers, All Other

(5) (5) 18.40 38,270

(1) For a complete listing of all detailed occupations in the Elgin Metropolitan Division, see
(2) Estimates for detailed occupations do not sum to the totals because the totals include occupations not shown separately. Estimates do not include self-employed workers.
(3) The location quotient is the ratio of the area concentration of occupational employment to the national average concentration. A location quotient greater than one indicates the occupation has a higher share of employment than average, and a location quotient less than one indicates the occupation is less prevalent in the area than average.
(4) Annual wages have been calculated by multiplying the hourly mean wage by a ‘year-round, full-time’ hours figure of 2,080 hours; for those occupations where there is not an hourly mean wage published, the annual wage has been directly calculated from the reported survey data.
(5) Estimates not released.


Last Modified Date: Wednesday, June 29, 2016