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News Release Information

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

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Occupational Employment and Wages in Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers – May 2017

Workers in the Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers Metropolitan Statistical Area had an average (mean) hourly wage of $22.03 in May 2017, about 9 percent below the nationwide average of $24.34, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Assistant Commissioner for Regional Operations Stanley W. Suchman noted that, after testing for statistical significance, 17 of the 22 major occupational groups had significantly lower wages than their respective national averages, including life, physical, and social science; architecture and engineering; and computer and mathematical. Local wage levels in the five remaining occupational groups were similar to their respective national averages.

When compared to the nationwide distribution, local employment was more highly concentrated in 4 of the 22 occupational groups, including production; business and financial operations; and computer and mathematical. Conversely, 10 groups had employment shares significantly below their national representation, including office and administrative support; healthcare practitioners and technical; and personal care and service. (See table A and box note at end of release.)

Table A. Occupational employment and wages by major occupational group, United States and the Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers Metropolitan Statistical Area, and measures of statistical significance, May 2017
Major occupational group Percent of total employment Mean hourly wage
United States Fayetteville United States Fayetteville Percent difference (1)

Total, all occupations

100.0 100.0 $24.34 $22.03* -9


5.1 5.7* 57.65 55.85 -3

Business and financial operations

5.2 6.4* 36.70 34.16* -7

Computer and mathematical

3.0 3.7* 43.18 35.44* -18

Architecture and engineering

1.8 1.0* 41.44 31.14* -25

Life, physical, and social science

0.8 0.4* 35.76 24.81* -31

Community and social service

1.5 0.6* 23.10 20.90* -10


0.8 0.5* 51.62 44.39 -14

Education, training, and library

6.1 6.2 26.67 23.59* -12

Arts, design, entertainment, sports, and media

1.4 1.4 28.34 25.82* -9

Healthcare practitioners and technical

6.0 4.7* 38.83 34.06* -12

Healthcare support

2.9 2.2* 15.05 13.67* -9

Protective service

2.4 1.6* 22.69 18.78* -17

Food preparation and serving related

9.3 8.9 11.88 10.45* -12

Building and grounds cleaning and maintenance

3.1 2.9 13.91 12.13* -13

Personal care and service

3.6 2.4* 13.11 11.82* -10

Sales and related

10.2 10.9 19.56 19.79 1

Office and administrative support

15.4 13.9* 18.24 16.56* -9

Farming, fishing, and forestry

0.3 0.4 13.87 14.21 2

Construction and extraction

4.0 3.4* 24.01 18.75* -22

Installation, maintenance, and repair

3.9 3.9 23.02 20.35* -12


6.3 8.9* 18.30 15.07* -18

Transportation and material moving

7.0 10.0 17.82 17.38 -2

(1) A positive percent difference measures how much the mean wage in the Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers Metropolitan Statistical Area 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. Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers had 21,380 jobs in production, accounting for 8.9 percent of local area employment, significantly higher than the 6.3-percent share nationally. The average hourly wage for this occupational group locally was $15.07, significantly below the national wage of $18.30.

Some of the larger detailed occupations within the production group included meat, poultry, and fish cutters and trimmers (3,330), production workers' helpers (2,250), and assemblers and fabricators, all other, including team assemblers (1,910). Among the higher-paying jobs were transportation equipment painters and first-line supervisors of production and operating workers, with mean hourly wages of $28.42 and $25.16, respectively. At the lower end of the wage scale were laundry and dry-cleaning workers ($10.65) and pressers, textile, garment, and related materials ($10.94). (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 Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers Metropolitan Statistical Area, above-average concentrations of employment were found in some of the occupations within the production group. For instance, meat, poultry, and fish cutters and trimmers were employed at 12.9 times the national rate in Fayetteville, and slaughterers and meat packers, at 4.8 times the U.S. average. Both location quotients in Fayetteville were among the highest in all metropolitan areas for these particular occupations. On the other hand, welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers had a location quotient of 0.9 in Fayetteville, indicating that this 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 Arkansas Department of Workforce Services.

Notes on Occupational Employment Statistics Data

With the release of the May 2017 estimates, the OES program has replaced 21 detailed occupations found in the 2010 Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) with 10 new aggregations of those occupations. In addition, selected 4- and 5-digit North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) industries previously published by OES will no longer be published separately. Some of the 4-digit NAICS industries that are no longer being published separately will instead be published as OES-specific industry aggregations. More information about the new occupational and industry aggregations is available 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 survey measuring occupational employment and wage rates for wage and salary workers in nonfarm establishments in the United States. The OES data available from BLS include cross-industry occupational employment and wage estimates for the nation; over 650 areas, including states and the District of Columbia, metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs), metropolitan divisions, nonmetropolitan areas, and territories; national industry-specific estimates at the NAICS sector, 3-, 4-, and selected 5- and 6-digit industry levels, and national estimates 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. Each year, two semiannual panels of approximately 200,000 sampled establishments are contacted, one panel in May and the other in November. Responses are obtained by mail, Internet or other electronic means, email, telephone, or personal visit. The May 2017 estimates are based on responses from six semiannual panels collected over a 3-year period: May 2017, November 2016, May 2016, November 2015, May 2015, and November 2014. The overall national response rate for the six panels, based on the 50 states and the District of Columbia, is 72 percent based on establishments and 68 percent based on weighted sampled employment. The unweighted sample employment of 82 million across all six semiannual panels represents approximately 58 percent of total national employment. The sample in the Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers Metropolitan Statistical Area included 2,169 establishments with a response rate of 74 percent. For more information about OES concepts and methodology, go to

The May 2017 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 Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers Metropolitan Statistical Area includes Benton, Madison, and Washington Counties in Arkansas and McDonald County in Missouri.

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, Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers Metropolitan Statistical Area, May 2017
Occupation (1) Employment Mean wages
Level (2) Location
quotient (3)
Hourly Annual (4)

Production occupations

21,380 1.4 $15.07 $31,350

First-line supervisors of production and operating workers

1,440 1.4 25.16 52,330

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

470 1.1 17.27 35,920

Structural metal fabricators and fitters

130 1.0 17.38 36,140

Assemblers and fabricators, all other, including team assemblers

1,910 0.9 13.96 29,040


380 1.2 11.43 23,770

Butchers and meat cutters

250 1.1 13.39 27,840

Meat, poultry, and fish cutters and trimmers

3,330 12.9 12.18 25,330

Slaughterers and meat packers

620 4.8 12.35 25,680

Food batchmakers

360 1.4 11.60 24,130

Food cooking machine operators and tenders

230 4.1 11.81 24,560

Food processing workers, all other

670 9.2 11.57 24,070

Computer-controlled machine tool operators, metal and plastic

(5) (5) 20.27 42,150

Extruding and drawing machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

160 1.3 18.84 39,190

Cutting, punching, and press machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

570 1.8 19.36 40,270

Grinding, lapping, polishing, and buffing machine tool setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

130 1.0 19.19 39,910


410 0.7 16.52 34,360

Molding, coremaking, and casting machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

490 1.9 15.95 33,190

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

210 1.0 16.67 34,670

Tool and die makers

60 0.5 21.16 44,010

Welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers

540 0.9 18.32 38,110

Welding, soldering, and brazing machine setters, operators, and tenders

(5) (5) 17.37 36,120

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

50 0.8 18.38 38,230

Printing press operators

390 1.4 15.08 31,370

Laundry and dry-cleaning workers

220 0.6 10.65 22,160

Pressers, textile, garment, and related materials

(5) (5) 10.94 22,750

Sewing machine operators

120 0.5 12.66 26,320

Cabinetmakers and bench carpenters

370 2.2 13.66 28,420

Sawing machine setters, operators, and tenders, wood

90 1.1 12.70 26,420

Woodworking machine setters, operators, and tenders, except sawing

70 0.6 11.17 23,240

Stationary engineers and boiler operators

(5) (5) 24.37 50,700

Water and wastewater treatment plant and system operators

310 1.6 18.97 39,450

Chemical equipment operators and tenders

(5) (5) 13.74 28,590

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

(5) (5) 20.03 41,650

Crushing, grinding, and polishing machine setters, operators, and tenders

40 0.7 14.22 29,580

Grinding and polishing workers, hand

30 0.6 12.76 26,540

Mixing and blending machine setters, operators, and tenders

140 0.6 16.88 35,120

Extruding, forming, pressing, and compacting machine setters, operators, and tenders

(5) (5) 18.52 38,520

Inspectors, testers, sorters, samplers, and weighers

1,340 1.5 15.00 31,200

Jewelers and precious stone and metal workers

130 3.1 18.34 38,150

Dental laboratory technicians

(5) (5) 16.31 33,920

Ophthalmic laboratory technicians

80 1.5 16.63 34,590

Packaging and filling machine operators and tenders

1,100 1.7 14.70 30,580

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

180 1.2 16.03 33,340

Painters, transportation equipment

(5) (5) 28.42 59,110

Cleaning, washing, and metal pickling equipment operators and tenders

90 3.0 14.27 29,680

Cooling and freezing equipment operators and tenders

190 13.1 13.94 29,000

Molders, shapers, and casters, except metal and plastic

(5) (5) 14.42 30,000

Paper goods machine setters, operators, and tenders

150 0.9 16.48 34,270

Helpers-production workers

2,250 3.3 12.05 25,060

Production workers, all other

460 1.1 15.22 31,660

(1) For a complete listing of all detailed occupations in the Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers Metropolitan Area 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) Estimate not released.


Last Modified Date: Tuesday, June 26, 2018