Riverside is the largest city in the Inland Empire and has a long tradition in agriculture. However, government, manufacturing, education and retail are currently major elements of the economy. Riverside also has the most jobs and businesses of all the cities in the region. Affordable land and housing has been attracting employees and skilled professionals to Riverside. The increase in skilled professionals has increased the Inland Empire's amount of high-tech, corporate and professional jobs.
Riverside is a prominent finance center for the region and is home to numerous brokerages, architecture, accounting, software, legal, banks and engineering firms. Also, Riverside is home to a large number of trucking companies.
Riverside has been attracting new technology companies by developing high-tech industrial parks such as the Riverside Regional Technology Park which includes the participation of the University of California at Riverside. Companies such as Bourns Engineering, Centrum Analytical labs, I/O Software and Luminex Software have selected Riverside for their new headquarters. Riverside has also attracted a large number of industrial companies to the city. Manufacturing jobs in Riverside are provided in areas such as electrical instruments, glass, plastics, recreational vehicles, food processing, wood, and imaging equipment.
The major non-agricultural sectors for jobs in Riverside are:
- Trade, transportation and utilities
- Professional and business services
- Leisure and hospitality
Some of the popular jobs in Riverside which are primarily filled by those with a college degree are teachers, registered nurses, wholesale and manufacturing sales representatives, accountants and auditors, sales managers, financial managers, management analysts, civil engineers and social and human service assistants. Some of the jobs which are more prevalent in Riverside than most cities include, Terrazzo workers and finishers, forest and conservation technicians, fiberglass laminators and fabricators, stone masons, plasterers and stucco masons and tile and marble setters.
Riverside offers incentives to bring in new companies and help existing businesses grow. The incentives include local and state Enterprise Zones, industrial development bond financing, redevelopment incentives and employment hiring and training programs. Riverside also offers the Recycled Market Development Zone which provides financial incentives for businesses that utilize recycling in their manufacturing processes.
Notable information regarding Riverside: Included in Money Magazine's best places to live list. In 2008 the cost of living index was 130.8 which is high when compared to the national average of 100. For the population over the age of 25, about 19% have a bachelor's degree or higher.
The primary employers in Riverside are shown below:
- University of California at Riverside
- Riverside Unified School District
- City of Riverside
- Kaiser Permanente
- Pacific Bell
- Alvord Unified School District
- The Press Enterprise Co
- Riverside Community Hospital
- Riverside City Council
- Riverside Forklift Training
Some of the business organizations which provide assistance to Riverside companies are:
- Greater Riverside Chamber of Commerce
- Workforce Development Centers of Riverside County
- Riverside Downtown Partnerships
The Press-Enterprise offers up-to-date information regarding the business activities in the Riverside area.