Department of Labor Logo United States Department of Labor
Dot gov

The .gov means it's official.
Federal government websites often end in .gov or .mil. Before sharing sensitive information, make sure you're on a federal government site.


The site is secure.
The https:// ensures that you are connecting to the official website and that any information you provide is encrypted and transmitted securely.

News Release Information

Wednesday, July 10, 2024

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

Occupational Employment and Wages in Grand Island — May 2023

Workers in the Grand Island, NE Metropolitan Statistical Area had an average (mean) hourly wage of $24.91 in May 2023, compared to the nationwide average of $31.48, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Regional Commissioner Jason Palmer noted that higher paying major occupational groups included management ($49.79), legal ($43.10), and healthcare practitioners and technical ($41.28). Lower paying occupations included personal care and service ($14.41), food preparation and serving related ($14.90), and building and grounds cleaning and maintenance ($16.50). (See table A.)

Occupational groups with the highest employment in the Grand Island area included production (14.4 percent), transportation and material moving (11.1 percent), and office and administrative support (11.1 percent). Major occupational groups on the lower end of local employment included legal (0.3 percent); life, physical, and social science (0.5 percent); and arts, design, entertainment, sports, and media (0.7 percent). (See table A.)

Table A. Occupational employment and wages by major occupational group, United States and the Grand Island metropolitan area, May 2023
Major occupational group Percent of total employment Mean hourly wage ($)
United States Grand Island United States Grand Island

Total, all occupations

100.0 100.0 31.48 24.91


6.9 5.5 66.23 49.79

Business and financial operations

6.6 4.1 43.55 33.53

Computer and mathematical

3.4 1.2 54.39 39.57

Architecture and engineering

1.7 1.0 47.64 36.37

Life, physical, and social science

0.9 0.5 42.24 30.54

Community and social service

1.6 1.2 28.36 27.76


0.8 0.3 64.34 43.10

Educational instruction and library

5.8 5.6 31.92 26.20

Arts, design, entertainment, sports, and media

1.4 0.7 36.31 22.23

Healthcare practitioners and technical

6.1 5.4 49.07 41.28

Healthcare support

4.7 3.1 18.37 18.40

Protective service

2.3 1.3 27.74 28.91

Food preparation and serving related

8.7 8.8 16.58 14.90

Building and grounds cleaning and maintenance

2.9 2.7 18.43 16.50

Personal care and service

2.0 2.0 18.48 14.41

Sales and related

8.8 9.5 25.62 20.77

Office and administrative support

12.2 11.1 23.05 20.32

Farming, fishing, and forestry

0.3 0.5 19.22 23.49

Construction and extraction

4.1 4.8 29.57 23.39

Installation, maintenance, and repair

3.9 5.4 28.13 26.33


5.8 14.4 22.90 22.66

Transportation and material moving

9.1 11.1 22.45 21.43

One occupational group—production—was chosen to illustrate the diversity of data available for any of the 22 major occupational categories. Grand Island had 6,090 jobs in production, accounting for 14.4 percent of local area employment, compared to the 5.8-percent share nationally. The average hourly wage for this occupational group locally was $22.66, compared to the national wage of $22.90.

Some of the larger detailed occupations within the production group included inspectors, testers, sorters, samplers, and weighers (490), packaging and filling machine operators and tenders (480), and first-line supervisors of production and operating workers (400). Among the higher-paying jobs in this group were power plant operators and first-line supervisors of production and operating workers, with mean hourly wages of $56.94 and $31.48, respectively. At the lower end of the wage scale were laundry and dry-cleaning workers ($14.71) and bakers ($15.66). (Detailed data for the production occupations 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 Grand Island area, above-average concentrations of employment were found in many of the occupations within the production group. For instance, food cooking machine operators and tenders were employed at 10.1 times the national rate in Grand Island, and tool and die makers, at 5.4 times the U.S. average. Miscellaneous assemblers and fabricators had a location quotient of 0.9 in Grand Island, indicating that this particular occupation’s local and national employment shares were similar.

The statistics in this release are from the Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics (OEWS) survey, a cooperative effort between BLS and the State Workforce Agencies (SWAs). BLS funds the survey and provides the procedures and technical support. State Workforce Agencies collect most of the data: in this case, the Nebraska Department of Labor.

Technical Note

The Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics (OEWS) survey is a semiannual survey measuring occupational employment and wage rates for wage and salary workers in nonfarm establishments in the United States. The OEWS data available from BLS include cross-industry occupational employment and wage estimates for the nation; over 580 areas, including states and the District of Columbia, metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs), nonmetropolitan areas, and territories; national industry-specific estimates at the NAICS sector, 3-digit, most 4-digit, and selected 5- and 6-digit industry levels; and national estimates by ownership across all industries and for schools and hospitals. Full OEWS data tables are available online.

Additional information about the OEWS estimates and methodology are available in the national Technical Notes. The overall national response rate for the six panels, based on the 50 states and the District of Columbia, is 65.8 percent based on establishments and 64.3 percent based on weighted sampled employment. The sample in the Grand Island, NE Metropolitan Statistical Area included 806 establishments with a response rate of 77 percent.

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 Grand Island, NE Metropolitan Statistical Area includes Hall County, Hamilton County, Howard County, and Merrick County.

For more information

Answers to frequently asked questions about the OEWS data, as well as general program documentation, are available on the OEWS website.

Information in this release will be made available to individuals with sensory impairments upon request. Voice phone: (202) 691-5200; Telecommunications Relay Service: 7-1-1.

Table 1. Employment and wage data for production occupations, Grand Island metropolitan area, May 2023
Occupation (1) Employment Mean wages ($)
Level (2) Location quotient (3) Hourly Annual (4)

Production occupations

6,090 2.5 22.66 47,140

First-line supervisors of production and operating workers

400 2.1 31.48 65,470

Electrical, electronic, and electromechanical assemblers, except coil winders, tapers, and finishers

40 0.5 20.43 42,490

Structural metal fabricators and fitters

80 4.8 19.77 41,120

Miscellaneous assemblers and fabricators

380 0.9 19.53 40,620


60 1.0 15.66 32,570

Butchers and meat cutters

40 1.1 16.72 34,780

Food cooking machine operators and tenders

80 10.1 21.18 44,060


70 0.9 24.15 50,220

Multiple machine tool setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

80 2.2 21.68 45,090

Tool and die makers

90 5.4 29.56 61,490

Welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers

260 2.2 23.14 48,140

Plating machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

30 3.4 22.35 46,490

Laundry and dry-cleaning workers

70 1.4 14.71 30,590

Power plant operators

50 5.3 56.94 118,430

Water and wastewater treatment plant and system operators

40 1.3 27.59 57,390

Chemical equipment operators and tenders

70 2.0 24.67 51,310

Separating, filtering, clarifying, precipitating, and still machine setters, operators, and tenders

30 2.3 20.53 42,710

Mixing and blending machine setters, operators, and tenders

70 2.3 20.34 42,310

Inspectors, testers, sorters, samplers, and weighers

490 3.0 22.32 46,420

Packaging and filling machine operators and tenders

480 4.6 21.20 44,100

Coating, painting, and spraying machine setters, operators, and tenders

50 1.1 21.58 44,890

Computer numerically controlled tool operators

70 1.4 24.15 50,240

(1) For a complete listing of all detailed occupations in the Grand Island, NE Metropolitan Statistical Area, see
(2) Estimates for detailed occupations may not sum to the totals due to rounding, and because the totals may include occupations that are 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.


Last Modified Date: Wednesday, July 10, 2024