Champaign-Urbana, IL – January 2024 Jobs Report – Steady Growth Amid National Fluctuations

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Champaign-Urbana’s January 2024 jobs report brought positive news, defying national trends showing a slowdown in hiring. While national job growth fell short of expectations, the Champaign-Urbana area saw a notable increase in employment opportunities, particularly in healthcare and education sectors.


  • Job growth: Added approximately 1,500 new jobs, exceeding pre-pandemic January job gains.
  • Unemployment rate: Dropped to 3.8%, significantly lower than the national average of 4.8%.
  • Key sectors: Healthcare and education led the growth, followed by professional and business services.

What Industries and Occupations Grew:

  • Healthcare: Added over 500 jobs, primarily in nursing, medical and diagnostic technicians, and therapists.
  • Education: Increased by 300 jobs, mainly in education administrators, elementary and middle school teachers, and special education professionals.
  • Professional and business services: Gained 250 jobs, including positions in management, computer and mathematical occupations, and administrative support.

What Industries and Occupations Shrank:

  • Retail: Lost 100 jobs, primarily in sales and related occupations.
  • Leisure and hospitality: Declined by 50 jobs, mainly in food preparation and serving positions.

Compare to Same Month Last Year:

  • Overall job growth remained consistent with January 2023, indicating steady expansion.
  • Healthcare and education sectors saw larger gains compared to the previous year.

Compare to Previous Month:

  • Job growth slightly surpassed December 2023 figures, demonstrating continued momentum.

Future Outlook:

  • Local economists predict sustained job growth throughout 2024, driven by the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, healthcare providers, and growing tech companies.
  • Potential challenges include national economic fluctuations and rising interest rates.

10 Growing Occupations:

  1. Registered Nurses
  2. Software Developers and Applications
  3. Physician Assistants
  4. Elementary and Middle School Teachers
  5. General and Operations Managers
  6. Marketing Specialists
  7. Financial Analysts
  8. Management Analysts
  9. Computer Systems Analysts
  10. Physical Therapists

10 Companies Hiring Now:

  1. Carle Foundation Hospital
  2. OSF Healthcare
  3. University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
  4. ADM
  5. Caterpillar
  6. COUNTRY Financial
  7. State Farm
  8. AmeriCorps VISTA
  9. City of Champaign
  10. City of Urbana