Employment Opportunities

Employment covers employment status, such as employed in the labor force, unemployed, underemployed and not in the labor force; and employment type either being full-time, part-time, contractor or seasonal. Underemployment is the under-use of a worker due to a job that does not use the worker's skills, or is part time, or leaves the worker idle (1).

Employment Status

M Health Fairview Lakes Medical Center-Wyoming

The number of employed persons in Chisago County has grown from 22,394 in 2000 to 28,634 in September 2017, an increase of about 28%.


Industries and Wages

Education and Health Care are the largest employing industry in Chisago County, with 4,969 workers at 86 establishments. The next largest industry is Manufacturing, with 2,922 workers at 91 firms, accounting for 15.8 percent of total employment in the county. 

Between 2000 and 2017, the Professional and Business Services industry experienced the largest proportional growth in the county, adding 586 employees, a 108.7% increase.


Wages in the Chisago County were lower in each industry category compared to the Twin Cities Metro Area with the exception of the Natural Resources and Mining sector which was $373 higher in Chisago County.

For most people, employment is typically the primary source of income and it enables individuals and families to acquire healthy and nutritious meals, quality childcare, educational opportunities and healthier homes (3).

High levels of unemployment and underemployment within a community can have substantial implications on overall health and well-being.

Plastech Corporation-Rush City

Employment and Transportation

Proximity to employment is often a primary consideration when choosing where to live, since transportation costs often account for a considerable proportion of households’ budgets. 

• Chisago County is a net exporter of workers, with 6,775 commuting into the county compared to 20,426 workers leaving the county. In addition, 6,317 workers live and work in the county. 

• Roughly 52% of workers in Chisago County live outside of the County and commute in, while 48% live within Chisago County.

• Approximately 42% Chisago County workers travels between 25 to 50 miles. About 24% travel between 10 and 24 miles to their job, while 22% travel less than 10 miles. Nearly 10% of workers travel over 50 miles to their job (5). 

The lack of adequate housing in Chisago County hinders employee recruitment and retention (4).


1. Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (2018). Employment. Retrieved from: http://www.countyhealthrankings.org/explore-health-rankings/what-and-why-we-rank/health-factors/social-and-economic-factors/employment

2. Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (2017). County Snapshots. Retrieved from:   https://mn.gov/deed/newscenter/publications/review/july-2017/county-snaphots.jsp  

3. Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. (2013, March 12). How does employment - or unemployment - affect health? [Issue Brief]. Retrieved from: https://www.rwjf.org/en/library/research/2012/12/how-does-employment--or-unemployment--affect-health-.html

4.  Maxfield Research and Consulting LLC (2018). Retrieved from: http://www.chisagocounty.org/pdf-files/ComprehensiveHousing-2018.pdf

5. Longitudinal Employer-Household Dynamics; Maxfield Research and Consulting LLC (2015). Retrieved from: http://www.chisagocounty.org/pdf-files/ComprehensiveHousing-2018.pdf 

Published: 1/15/20