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Fort Smith Employment

Employment and Industries in the Fort Smith, Arkansas Area

Fort Smith has for years been a prominent regional manufacturing center. However, a large number of the manufacturing jobs have been relocated overseas. Fort Smith has been ranked number six in the nation regarding the lowest cost of doing business cities. The important elements of the economy are manufacturing, trucking, healthcare, food-processing, tourism, recreation and conventions. A variety of products are produced in Fort Smith including appliances, food products, wood and paper products, composite building materials and air conditioning systems.

The most popular jobs in Fort Smith which are typically filled by college graduates are registered nurses, teachers, wholesale and manufacturing sales representatives, accountant and auditors and social and human service assistants. Some of the high paying jobs in the region are physical therapists and physical therapist assistants, truck drivers, heavy and tractor trailers; sales managers, purchasing managers and lawyers.

Notable information about Fort Smith: Fort Smith has been mentioned by Forbes as having the lowest cost of living in the nation. For the population over 25 years of age, about 18% have a bachelor's degree or higher. In addition, the daytime population increases by about 35% due to commuters from the surrounding area.

In association with the Arkansas Department of Economic Development, the city offers various types of investment and job creation incentives in order to attract new companies and retain flourishing businesses. Tax Back, InvestArk and Advantage Arkansas are a few of the incentives that are available to businesses. The Arkansas Construction Education Foundation Training Program provides classroom and real-world experience via apprenticeship programs. In addition, the University of Arkansas Fort Smith's Center for Business and Professional Development partners with local businesses with the objective of developing the skills of employees.

The major employers in Fort Smith are:

  • Baldor Electric Company
  • Fort Smith Public Schools
  • O.K. Industries
  • City of Fort Smith
  • Whirlpool
  • Rheem Manufacturing Company
  • Sparks Health System
  • Arkansas Best Corporation
  • University of Arkansas Fort Smith
  • Golden Living
  • St. Edward Mercy Medical Center
  • Hiram Walker
  • Bost
  • Owens-Corning
  • Cooper Clinic
  • Area Agency on Aging
  • Gerber Products
  • Kraft-Planters
  • MacSteel
  • Riverside Furniture
  • The Trane Company
  • Twin Rivers

The list shown below displays the major industries for employment in Fort Smith:

  • Manufacturing
  • Trade, transportation and public utilities
  • Education and health services
  • Government
  • Professional and business services
  • Construction
  • Financial activities

Business organizations offering assistance to Fort Smith companies:

The Times Record is an excellent publication to help individuals keep up-to-date with the business activities in the Fort Smith area.

Jobs in Fort Smith

Rank Title Total Employees Local Mean Salary (Per Year) Local Mean Salary (Per hour) National Growth % 2014-2024
1 All Occupations 109910 $35680 $17.16 100
2 Office and Administrative Support Occupations 16900 $30590 $14.71 14.8
3 Production Occupations 14580 $30690 $14.76 5.85
4 Sales and Related Occupations 11320 $29550 $14.21 10.15
5 Transportation and Material Moving Occupations 11030 $31120 $14.96 6.45
6 Food Preparation and Serving Related Occupations 9960 $19770 $9.51 8.3
7 Healthcare Practitioners and Technical Occupations 6390 $65080 $31.29 5.75
8 Education, Training, and Library Occupations 5560 $42890 $20.62 6.15
9 Construction and Extraction Occupations 5100 $37360 $17.96 4.4
10 Installation, Maintenance, and Repair Occupations 4690 $37150 $17.86 3.8
11 Management Occupations 4470 $79260 $38.11 6.05
12 Heavy and Tractor-Trailer Truck Drivers 4240 $36700 $17.65 1.2
13 Retail Salespersons 3620 $24290 $11.68 3.1
14 Personal Care and Service Occupations 3540 $20780 $9.99 4.1
15 Cashiers 3480 $19220 $9.24 2.25
16 Healthcare Support Occupations 3100 $25580 $12.3 3.05
17 Combined Food Preparation and Serving Workers, Including Fast Food 3100 $18210 $8.76 2.15
18 Business and Financial Operations Occupations 2940 $55460 $26.66 5.05
19 Laborers and Freight, Stock, and Material Movers, Hand 2860 $24940 $11.99 1.6
20 Office Clerks, General 2850 $25770 $12.39 2
21 Building and Grounds Cleaning and Maintenance Occupations 2800 $23880 $11.48 3.7
22 Helpers--Production Workers 2650 $21040 $10.11 0.3
23 Registered Nurses 2210 $53060 $25.51 1.9
24 Protective Service Occupations 2110 $32780 $15.76 2.25
25 Personal Care Aides 1810 $18640 $8.96 1.3
26 Waiters and Waitresses 1720 $18810 $9.04 1.6
27 Stock Clerks and Order Fillers 1600 $23810 $11.45 1.2
28 Nursing Assistants 1570 $22360 $10.75 1.05
29 Community and Social Service Occupations 1540 $36520 $17.56 1.65
30 Bookkeeping, Accounting, and Auditing Clerks 1520 $32570 $15.66 1.1
31 General and Operations Managers 1520 $79610 $38.27 1.4
32 Secretaries and Administrative Assistants, Except Legal, Medical, and Executive 1470 $29450 $14.16 1.6
33 Customer Service Representatives 1450 $28830 $13.86 1.75
34 First-Line Supervisors of Office and Administrative Support Workers 1440 $46890 $22.55 1
35 Maintenance and Repair Workers, General 1270 $33270 $16 0.9
36 Computer and Mathematical Occupations 1230 $58420 $28.09 2.8
37 Team Assemblers 1230 $30900 $14.85 0.75
38 Janitors and Cleaners, Except Maids and Housekeeping Cleaners 1190 $23670 $11.38 1.6
39 First-Line Supervisors of Retail Sales Workers 1150 $37930 $18.23 1
40 Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses 1090 $37010 $17.79 0.5
41 Sales Representatives, Wholesale and Manufacturing, Except Technical and Scientific Products 1020 $51650 $24.83 1
42 First-Line Supervisors of Production and Operating Workers 980 $50270 $24.17 0.4
43 Meat, Poultry, and Fish Cutters and Trimmers 880 $22770 $10.95 0.1
44 Architecture and Engineering Occupations 870 $63160 $30.37 1.65
45 Industrial Truck and Tractor Operators 840 $28520 $13.71 0.35
46 Food Preparation Workers 800 $18650 $8.97 0.6
47 Cooks, Restaurant 790 $21070 $10.13 0.75
48 First-Line Supervisors of Food Preparation and Serving Workers 770 $27850 $13.39 0.6
49 Maids and Housekeeping Cleaners 760 $19900 $9.57 1
50 Packaging and Filling Machine Operators and Tenders 750 $27780 $13.35 0.25
51 Cooks, Fast Food 680 $18390 $8.84 0.3
52 Tellers 670 $24690 $11.87 0.3
53 Police and Sheriff's Patrol Officers 620 $34660 $16.66 0.45
54 Childcare Workers 610 $18950 $9.11 0.8
55 Home Health Aides 590 $20390 $9.8 0.7
56 Receptionists and Information Clerks 560 $25050 $12.04 0.7
57 Welders, Cutters, Solderers, and Brazers 550 $39760 $19.12 0.3
58 Cooks, Institution and Cafeteria 540 $19570 $9.41 0.3
59 Plumbers, Pipefitters, and Steamfitters 540 $38030 $18.29 0.3
60 Light Truck or Delivery Services Drivers 540 $26240 $12.61 0.6
61 Farming, Fishing, and Forestry Occupations 530 $23720 $11.4 0.6
62 Construction Laborers 520 $26900 $12.93 0.8
63 Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics 510 $29960 $14.4 0.5
64 Electricians 510 $47390 $22.78 0.4
65 Accountants and Auditors 510 $64380 $30.95 0.9
66 Security Guards 500 $25590 $12.3 0.7
67 Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media Occupations 490 $35980 $17.3 1.7
68 Sales Representatives, Services, All Other 480 $44360 $21.33 0.6
69 Landscaping and Groundskeeping Workers 470 $23950 $11.51 0.8
70 Inspectors, Testers, Sorters, Samplers, and Weighers 470 $30940 $14.87 0.3
71 Food Processing Workers, All Other 460 $22500 $10.82 0
72 Graders and Sorters, Agricultural Products 450 $22910 $11.01 0
73 Parts Salespersons 440 $24930 $11.98 0.2
74 First-Line Supervisors of Mechanics, Installers, and Repairers 440 $48750 $23.44 0.3
75 Production Workers, All Other 430 $33000 $15.87 0.2
76 First-Line Supervisors of Construction Trades and Extraction Workers 430 $50820 $24.44 0.4
77 Production, Planning, and Expediting Clerks 420 $40810 $19.62 0.2
78 Substitute Teachers 410 $18400 $8.85 0
79 Operating Engineers and Other Construction Equipment Operators 410 $35590 $17.11 0.2
80 Legal Occupations 410 $65060 $31.28 0.8
81 Billing and Posting Clerks 390 $29770 $14.31 0.35
82 Carpenters 390 $33170 $15.95 0.6
83 Food Batchmakers 380 $25620 $12.32 0.1
84 Medical Secretaries 380 $28590 $13.75 0.4
85 Shipping, Receiving, and Traffic Clerks 370 $31810 $15.29 0.4
86 Bus Drivers, School or Special Client 360 $19260 $9.26 0.3
87 Packers and Packagers, Hand 350 $24840 $11.94 0.45
88 Medical and Health Services Managers 340 $83030 $39.92 0.2
89 Life, Physical, and Social Science Occupations 340 $52920 $25.44 0.9
90 Business Operations Specialists, All Other 340 $60540 $29.11 0.7
91 Industrial Machinery Mechanics 320 $43050 $20.7 0.2
92 Driver/Sales Workers 320 $29990 $14.42 0.3
93 Rehabilitation Counselors 300 $19300 $9.28 0.1
94 Pharmacy Technicians 290 $28910 $13.9 0.25
95 Bartenders 290 $21420 $10.3 0.4
96 Roustabouts, Oil and Gas 290 $39400 $18.94 0.1
97 Human Resources Specialists 280 $43310 $20.82 0.3
98 Financial Managers 280 $91550 $44.02 0.4
99 First-Line Supervisors of Transportation and Material-Moving Machine and Vehicle Operators 270 $48890 $23.51 0.1
100 Mixing and Blending Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders 270 $35070 $16.86 0.1
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Additional Details

Fort Smith Colleges
Fort Smith colleges and trade schools.

Jobs More Common Near Fort Smith Than Most Other Cities

* Average job popularity for metro areas = 1.0

Title Mean Local Salary Local Jobs
All Occupations 35,680 109,910
Office and Administrative Support Occupations 30,590 16,900
Production Occupations 30,690 14,580
Sales and Related Occupations 29,550 11,320
Transportation and Material Moving Occupations 31,120 11,030
Food Preparation and Serving Related Occupations 19,770 9,960
Healthcare Practitioners and Technical Occupations 65,080 6,390
Education, Training, and Library Occupations 42,890 5,560
Construction and Extraction Occupations 37,360 5,100
Installation, Maintenance, and Repair Occupations 37,150 4,690
Management Occupations 79,260 4,470
Heavy and Tractor-Trailer Truck Drivers 36,700 4,240
Retail Salespersons 24,290 3,620
Personal Care and Service Occupations 20,780 3,540
Cashiers 19,220 3,480
Healthcare Support Occupations 25,580 3,100
Combined Food Preparation and Serving Workers, Including Fast Food 18,210 3,100
Business and Financial Operations Occupations 55,460 2,940
Laborers and Freight, Stock, and Material Movers, Hand 24,940 2,860
Office Clerks, General 25,770 2,850
Building and Grounds Cleaning and Maintenance Occupations 23,880 2,800
Helpers--Production Workers 21,040 2,650
Registered Nurses 53,060 2,210
Protective Service Occupations 32,780 2,110
Personal Care Aides 18,640 1,810
Waiters and Waitresses 18,810 1,720
Stock Clerks and Order Fillers 23,810 1,600
Nursing Assistants 22,360 1,570
Community and Social Service Occupations 36,520 1,540
Bookkeeping, Accounting, and Auditing Clerks 32,570 1,520
General and Operations Managers 79,610 1,520
Secretaries and Administrative Assistants, Except Legal, Medical, and Executive 29,450 1,470
Customer Service Representatives 28,830 1,450
First-Line Supervisors of Office and Administrative Support Workers 46,890 1,440
Maintenance and Repair Workers, General 33,270 1,270
Computer and Mathematical Occupations 58,420 1,230
Team Assemblers 30,900 1,230
Janitors and Cleaners, Except Maids and Housekeeping Cleaners 23,670 1,190
First-Line Supervisors of Retail Sales Workers 37,930 1,150
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses 37,010 1,090
Sales Representatives, Wholesale and Manufacturing, Except Technical and Scientific Products 51,650 1,020
First-Line Supervisors of Production and Operating Workers 50,270 980
Meat, Poultry, and Fish Cutters and Trimmers 22,770 880
Architecture and Engineering Occupations 63,160 870
Industrial Truck and Tractor Operators 28,520 840
Food Preparation Workers 18,650 800
Cooks, Restaurant 21,070 790
First-Line Supervisors of Food Preparation and Serving Workers 27,850 770
Maids and Housekeeping Cleaners 19,900 760
Packaging and Filling Machine Operators and Tenders 27,780 750

Work Paying Relatively Well in the Fort Smith, Arkansas Metro Area (2008 data)

* Average Salary Index for metro areas = 1.0

Title Mean Local Salary Local Jobs
All Occupations 35,680 109,910
Office and Administrative Support Occupations 30,590 16,900
Production Occupations 30,690 14,580
Sales and Related Occupations 29,550 11,320
Transportation and Material Moving Occupations 31,120 11,030
Healthcare Practitioners and Technical Occupations 65,080 6,390
Education, Training, and Library Occupations 42,890 5,560
Construction and Extraction Occupations 37,360 5,100
Installation, Maintenance, and Repair Occupations 37,150 4,690
Management Occupations 79,260 4,470
Heavy and Tractor-Trailer Truck Drivers 36,700 4,240
Healthcare Support Occupations 25,580 3,100
Business and Financial Operations Occupations 55,460 2,940
Office Clerks, General 25,770 2,850
Registered Nurses 53,060 2,210
Protective Service Occupations 32,780 2,110
Community and Social Service Occupations 36,520 1,540
Bookkeeping, Accounting, and Auditing Clerks 32,570 1,520
General and Operations Managers 79,610 1,520
Secretaries and Administrative Assistants, Except Legal, Medical, and Executive 29,450 1,470
Customer Service Representatives 28,830 1,450
First-Line Supervisors of Office and Administrative Support Workers 46,890 1,440
Maintenance and Repair Workers, General 33,270 1,270
Computer and Mathematical Occupations 58,420 1,230
Team Assemblers 30,900 1,230
First-Line Supervisors of Retail Sales Workers 37,930 1,150
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses 37,010 1,090
Sales Representatives, Wholesale and Manufacturing, Except Technical and Scientific Products 51,650 1,020
First-Line Supervisors of Production and Operating Workers 50,270 980
Architecture and Engineering Occupations 63,160 870
Industrial Truck and Tractor Operators 28,520 840
First-Line Supervisors of Food Preparation and Serving Workers 27,850 770
Packaging and Filling Machine Operators and Tenders 27,780 750
Police and Sheriff's Patrol Officers 34,660 620
Receptionists and Information Clerks 25,050 560
Welders, Cutters, Solderers, and Brazers 39,760 550
Plumbers, Pipefitters, and Steamfitters 38,030 540
Light Truck or Delivery Services Drivers 26,240 540
Construction Laborers 26,900 520
Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics 29,960 510
Electricians 47,390 510
Accountants and Auditors 64,380 510
Security Guards 25,590 500
Arts, Design, Entertainment, Sports, and Media Occupations 35,980 490
Sales Representatives, Services, All Other 44,360 480
Inspectors, Testers, Sorters, Samplers, and Weighers 30,940 470
First-Line Supervisors of Mechanics, Installers, and Repairers 48,750 440
Production Workers, All Other 33,000 430
First-Line Supervisors of Construction Trades and Extraction Workers 50,820 430
Production, Planning, and Expediting Clerks 40,810 420

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