Performance Highlights of the Rogue Valley

by Brenda Turner

February 20, 2024

Employment rates of recent workforce program exiters in the Rogue Valley are similar to rates statewide. Rogue Valley program exiters had lower median earnings than the statewide figure, which is pulled up by the Portland Metro area. Wage gains of former Unemployment Insurance recipients in the Rogue Valley were smaller in late 2022 than the prior year.
Graph 1 Graph showing Employment Rate Two Quarters after Exit, Fourth Quarter 2022 Exits

Employment Rate Two Quarters After Exit

Statewide, about 30,000 workforce system participants exited Employment Services (ES), Unemployment Insurance (UI), Trade Act, and WIOA Title I in fourth quarter 2022. Of those, about 21,000 (70%) were employed two quarters after exit. Two counties make up the Rogue Valley: Jackson and Josephine. The Rogue Valley made up about a tenth of Oregon’s total and had a similar employment rate two quarters after exit of 68%.

Rogue Valley ranks below Oregon statewide for UI and ES exiters, while the 75% employment rate for Rogue Valley Title I exiters was just over the statewide level of 72% and above the rate for UI and ES. Trade Act data is confidential for Rogue Valley in fourth quarter 2022. As a smaller program, Trade Act performance tends to be more volatile than other programs around the state, ranging from 61% in Mid-Valley to 92% in East Cascades.

Among all Oregon areas, the Rogue Valley had the second lowest Employment Rate two quarters after exit for those exiting in fourth quarter 2022.

Median Earnings

The median earnings of those who exited UI in Oregon and Rogue Valley trended together from the end of 2021 through the next four quarters, with median earnings among UI recipients slightly higher than all programs (UI, ES, Trade Act and WIOA Title I) combined. The Rogue Valley’s median wages dropped in the second quarter of 2022 and stayed lower into the third quarter before rebounding slightly towards the end of the year. UI exiters in Oregon realized median earnings that were nearly $2,000 higher than those in the Rogue Valley at the end of 2022. Wages in the Portland area and Willamette Valley tend to help raise the statewide median wage.
Graph showing Median Earnings of Unemployment Insurance Exiters Fluctuated, Remained Above the Average of All Exiters

Wage Gain

To be counted as having a wage gain around the time of services, individuals must have worked during two and three quarters prior to entering services and worked during the second and third quarters after exiting services and had an increase in their wages between these two time periods. The share of individuals who realized wage gains trended down through the third quarter of 2021 before rebounding in the third quarter of 2022. Of those who exited UI, Trade Act, and Title I in 2021q3, around 70% saw a wage gain while less than 60% of individuals who exited ES services during that same quarter had a wage gain. The rate for ES exiters remained below other programs for the next year. 

Between third quarter 2021 and third quarter 2022, there was a significant reduction in the number of UI exiters statewide and in the Rogue Valley. This drop in exiters aligns with a drop in the number of UI claimants. Those whose unemployment payments ended in 2022 saw smaller wage gains compared with those who exited in mid to late 2021.
Table showing Share of Exiters with a Wage Gain Dipped in Second Quarter 2022


In general, employment rates of program exiters are similar to the statewide rate, while wage-related performance measures in Rogue Valley were lower than those statewide between third quarter 2021 and third quarter 2022.

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