A publication of the Indiana Business Research Center at IU's Kelley School of Business
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Nurses in Demand: Hot Jobs by Indiana Region

Registered nurse is the hottest job throughout Indiana, according to the Department of Workforce Development (DWD). Across the state, this occupation is expected to grow nearly 30 percent by 2014 (from 2004 levels). This means the addition of 15,400 workers in a field where the statewide median wage was $51,796 in 2006.

In fact, registered nurses (RNs) are in demand in every corner of the state, ranking either first or second in all 11 economic growth regions (EGRs), according to DWD's regional "Hoosier Hot Jobs" (see Table 1).

Table 1: Regional Demand for Registered Nurses, 2004 to 2014

Economic Growth Region
2004 Jobs
2014 Projection
Total Growth
Percent Growth
2006 Median Wage
Hot Job Rank
Region 1 7,300 9,060 1,760 24.1% $54,375 1
Region 2 4,610 5,880 1,280 27.7% $48,839 1
Region 3 5,720 7,210 1,490 25.9% $48,159 1
Region 4 2,940 3,630 690 23.5% $47,844 2
Region 5 17,550 22,570 5,020 28.6% $54,934 1
Region 6 2,480 3,110 630 25.4% $51,314 2
Region 7 1,430 1,750 320 22.7% $48,265 2
Region 8 1,540 2,010 470 30.6% $47,570 2
Region 9 1,890 2,500 610 32.4% $52,515 1
Region 10 1,390 1,800 410 29.2% $53,162 1
Region 11 4,010 5,180 1,170 29.1% $47,445 1

Source: Indiana Department of Workforce Development, Research and Analysis Unit

What Makes a Job Hot?

These rankings are based on the projected rate of employment growth, the total number of job openings and average wages. Jobs qualifying as a hot job have both high job growth factors based on DWD's 2004–2014 occupational projections, as well as high wages according to data from the Occupational Employment Statistics survey of employers.

Registered Nurses

In the coming years, the opportunity for RNs to find work in Indiana will abound. Projections from 2004 to 2014 indicate that EGRs 8 and 9 will see increases exceeding 30 percent, while Region 7 will post the smallest increase—a still healthy 23 percent growth.

In addition, wages for RNs ranged from $47,445 in EGR 11 to $54,934 in EGR 5 during 2006 (see Table 1).

Other Hot Jobs

Figure 1 identifies the top five jobs in each region. Aside from registered nurse, the only other job to rank first in any of the regions was postsecondary teacher, which topped the list in four regions that have a state university as a major employer (Purdue in EGR 4, Ball State in EGR 6, Indiana State University in EGR 7, and Indiana University Bloomington in EGR 8).

Figure 1: Top Five Hot Jobs by Economic Growth Region, 2004 to 2014

Figure 1
Click for zoomable pdf

Seven of the regional hot lists contain 50 jobs, while those for the four regions with the smallest working populations are limited to 25 jobs. The following six occupations appear as a hot job in all 11 regions. The highest rank for the occupation is shown in parentheses, along with the region where it occurred.

  • Registered nurse (#1 in EGRs 1, 2, 3, 5, 9, 10 and 11)
  • Postsecondary teacher (#1 in EGRs 4, 6, 7 and 8)
  • Accountant/auditor (#5 in EGRs 1 and 11)
  • Elementary/kindergarten teacher (#2 in EGR 10)
  • Medical and health services manager (#6 in EGR 3)
  • Secondary school teacher (#9 in EGR 10)

A total of 117 different jobs appear on at least one list, signifying the differing industry strengths in each of Indiana's regions.

The full "Hoosier Hot Jobs" listing for each of Indiana's 11 economic growth regions can be accessed on the Hoosiers by the Numbers website at www.hoosierdata.in.gov/docs/hh50/hh50regions.pdf

Rachel Justis, Geodemographic Analyst
Indiana Business Research Center, Kelley School of Business, Indiana University