Chicago Reaches Record Number of Jobs Since 2001

Companies across all sectors continue to add office space and jobs

Photo Credit: Neil Howard

Photo Credit: Neil Howard

The city of Chicago and the region reached record job growth since 2001 according to the latest “Where Workers Work” report published by the Illinois Department of Employment Security. Where Workers Work features basic private sector employment totals for six northeastern Illinois counties (Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry and Will), major communities in each of these counties, and zip codes within the City of Chicago. Get the complete report here.

“Across the city, in every part of the city, more people are working than at any time since 2000. This great news comes on the heels of more encouraging signs for Chicago’s economy. Last month we set a post-recession record for the number of tower cranes in the sky, and learned that our industrial occupancy rate has hit a 15-year high,” said Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel in a statement about the report. “As welcome as this news is, we are going to work harder than ever to build on the progress that’s been made and create even more economic opportunities that reach every neighborhood in the city of Chicago.”


  • The city gained 144,181 jobs since 2010 (a 14.3% increase)
  • The city saw 1,155,332 jobs in 2016, 13,362 more than the 2001 number of 1,141,970 jobs (a 1.2% increase)
  • The metro area saw a total of 3.51 million jobs in 2016, an all-time high since at least 2001
  • The report shows growth in the North Side and West Central sections of the city
  • Two-thirds of city zip codes have gained jobs since 2010
  • Year-over-year growth in city jobs from 2015-2106 was 29,273 (a 2.6% increase)
  • Job growth in the city year-over-year and since 2010 was driven by gains in business services, accommodations and food services, and transportation and warehousing sectors (healthcare contributed to 2010-2016 gains)

Talent is a consistent factor in job creation within city. Each month, companies across all sectors continue to announce new jobs. Companies that have announced added office space and jobs in Chicago over the past month include:

  • Echo Global Logistics, a provider of technology-enabled transportation and supply chain management services, opened its newly expanded Chicago headquarters. The 225,000-square-foot space (including a 132,000-square-foot expansion) is located at 600 W. Chicago Ave. in Chicago’s River North neighborhood. The space accommodates 2,000 employees, including approximately 500 employees who have relocated to complete the integration of Command Transportation with Echo Global Logistics.
  • Morningstar, Inc., a provider of independent investment research, expanded its global headquarters in Chicago with the addition of more than 29,000 square feet of space designed for its technology employees.The company added one floor at 22 W. Washington St. The new floor accommodates approximately 185 employees and is designed for the working needs of Morningstar’s engineers, user experience designers, and product management teams.
  • PowerReviews, a provider of ratings, reviews and question-and-answer technology to global brands and retailers, recently announced that it has doubled its Chicago headcount and will double its space when it moves to a new 50,000-square-foot office at 1 N. Dearborn St. The company recently closed its San Francisco office and moved some of those jobs to Chicago, where it can accommodate 300 employees. 
  • TmaxSoft, a multinational technology company focused on infrastructure software, announced that its office in Chicago has been designated as its new global headquarters. To accommodate its growing team and infrastructure, a new space is currently under construction and will be completed in the spring. Chicago was chosen not only for its growing stature as an international hub of trade, but also for its rapidly expanding presence in the technology sector and its large talent pool.