Data from the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics show that the nonprofit sector continued to record steady job growth through 2016, significantly outpacing the rate in the for-profit sector, an analysis conducted by the Johns Hopkins Center for Civil Society Studies finds.
According to the analysis, between 2007 and 2016 nonprofit employment grew by nearly 17 percent, while for-profit employment grew by less than 5 percent. The analysis also found that nonprofit employment growth outpaced for-profit employment growth in every state except Rhode Island, the only state in which both the number of nonprofit and for-profit jobs fell over the decade, and North Dakota, where growth in the two sectors was essentially the same, as well as in the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.
In addition, the data showed that the nonprofit sector accounted for the third largest employee payroll by industry, generating $638.1 billion in total wages in 2016, behind manufacturing ($797.42 billion) and professional, scientific, and technical services ($783.3 billion).
"The substantial sizes of the nonprofit payroll and workforce are a byproduct of demographic shifts and the changing structure of the U.S. economy, with service fields growing most rapidly and nonprofits heavily involved in some of the most important of them, including health, education, and social services," said Lester Salamon, director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Civil Society Studies. "Unfortunately, policy makers both nationally and locally have been slow to recognize the special contribution nonprofits make to America's economy and human service delivery system. Hopefully, these data will help change this."