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Monday, August 15, 2016


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Occupational Employment and Wages in Colorado Springs — May 2015

Workers in the Colorado Springs Metropolitan Statistical Area had an average (mean) hourly wage of $22.89 in May 2015, similar to the nationwide average of $23.23, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Assistant Commissioner for Regional Operations Stanley W. Suchman noted that, after testing for statistical significance, wages in the local area were significantly lower in 8 of the 22 major occupational groups, including arts, design, entertainment, sports, and media; education, training, and library; and construction and extraction.

When compared to the nationwide distribution, local employment was more highly concentrated in 8 of the 22 occupational groups, including computer and mathematical; sales and related; and business and financial operations. Conversely, seven groups had employment shares significantly below their national representation, including production; transportation and material moving; and management. (See table A and box note at end of release.)

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

Total, all occupations

100.0% 100.0% $23.23 $22.89 -1


5.0 4.0* 55.30 54.05 -2

Business and Financial Operations

5.1 6.3* 35.48 34.58 -3

Computer and Mathematical

2.9 5.1* 41.43 42.47 3

Architecture and Engineering

1.8 2.8* 39.89 39.14 -2

Life, Physical, and Social Science

0.8 0.6* 34.24 32.53 -5

Community and Social Service

1.4 1.7* 22.19 24.00* 8


0.8 0.5* 49.74 44.45 -11

Education, Training, and Library

6.2 6.8* 25.48 21.03* -17

Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media

1.3 1.6* 27.39 22.74* -17

Healthcare Practitioners and Technical

5.8 5.7 37.40 36.88 -1

Healthcare Support

2.9 2.5* 14.19 14.51 2

Protective Service

2.4 2.3 21.45 20.72 -3

Food Preparation and Serving Related

9.1 10.1* 10.98 10.68* -3

Building and Grounds Cleaning and Maintenance

3.2 3.4 13.02 12.43* -5

Personal Care and Service

3.1 3.0 12.33 12.44 1

Sales and Related

10.5 12.3* 18.90 18.68 -1

Office and Administrative Support

15.8 15.4 17.47 16.87* -3

Farming, Fishing, and Forestry

0.3 0.2* 12.67 14.94* 18

Construction and Extraction

4.0 4.2 22.88 20.52* -10

Installation, Maintenance, and Repair

3.9 3.8 22.11 21.46* -3


6.6 3.4* 17.41 16.90 -3

Transportation and Material Moving

6.9 4.1* 16.90 15.25* -10

(1) A positive percent difference measures how much the mean wage in Colorado Springs 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—computer and mathematical—was chosen to illustrate the diversity of data available for any of the 22 major occupational categories. Colorado Springs had 13,260 jobs in computer and mathematical, accounting for 5.1 percent of local area employment, significantly higher than the 2.9-percent share nationally. The average hourly wage for this occupational group locally was $42.47, compared to the national wage of $41.43.

Some of the larger detailed occupations within the computer and mathematical group included applications software developers (3,250), computer user support specialists (2,130), and systems software developers (2,010). Among the higher paying jobs were systems software developers and applications software developers, with mean hourly wages of $54.16 and $50.06, respectively. At the lower end of the wage scale were computer user support specialists ($26.08) and web developers ($28.26). (Detailed occupational data for computer and mathematical 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 Colorado Springs Metropolitan Statistical Area, above-average concentrations of employment were found in many of the occupations within the computer and mathematical group. For instance, systems software developers were employed at 2.7 times the national rate in Colorado Springs, and applications software developers, at 2.3 times the U.S. average. On the other hand, computer systems analysts had a location quotient of 0.8 in Colorado Springs, 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 Colorado Department of Labor & Employment.

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 Colorado Springs Metropolitan Statistical Area included 2,527 establishments with a response rate of 75 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 Colorado Springs, Colo. Metropolitan Statistical Area includes El Paso and Teller 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, Colorado Springs Metropolitan Statistical Area, May 2015
Occupation (1) Employment Mean wages
Level (2) Location quotient (3) Hourly Annual (4)

Computer and Mathematical Occupations

13,260 1.8 $42.47 $88,340

Computer and Information Research Scientists

60 1.3 52.14 108,450

Computer Systems Analysts

870 0.8 43.29 90,040

Information Security Analysts

430 2.5 49.64 103,250

Computer Programmers

370 0.7 37.53 78,060

Software Developers, Applications

3,250 2.3 50.06 104,130

Software Developers, Systems Software

2,010 2.7 54.16 112,660

Web Developers

270 1.1 28.26 58,780

Database Administrators

310 1.4 38.67 80,430

Network and Computer Systems Administrators

1,230 1.7 35.63 74,110

Computer Network Architects

460 1.7 44.89 93,360

Computer User Support Specialists

2,130 1.9 26.08 54,240

Computer Network Support Specialists

500 1.4 36.39 75,690

Computer Occupations, All Other

1,150 2.7 40.78 84,830

Operations Research Analysts

190 1.1 49.98 103,950

(1) For a complete listing of all detailed occupations in the Colorado Springs, CO Metropolitan Statistical 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.


Last Modified Date: Monday, August 15, 2016