Economic Development and Human Resources

Agency releases list of 100 'Hot Jobs' in West Michigan

January 17, 2018
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West Michigan Works! is reporting that the highest concentration of the region’s top 100 jobs are in the manufacturing and health sciences industries.

The workforce development agency released today its 2018 “Hot Jobs!” list, an annual publication that examines the current job market in Allegan, Barry, Ionia, Kent, Montcalm, Muskegon and Ottawa counties.

The list is available on the West Michigan Works! website.

“We’re grateful to the many partners that provide input into the ‘Hot Jobs!’ list,” said Jacob Maas, CEO, West Michigan Works!. “Because it starts with credible state labor market data and then receives intense scrutiny from our regional industry councils and employers, we are confident that the list provides solid guidance for students, job seekers and our workforce partners.”

One such partner is Grand Rapids Community College, or GRCC.

“(GRCC) considers West Michigan Works! a valued partner in the work we do,” said Bill Pink, president, GRCC. “The ‘Hot Jobs’ list contains important information for our students and our region.”

Daniel Mitchell, a vocational rehabilitation counselor with the State of Michigan, said he relies on the list to help consumers identify a vocational goal consistent with local labor market demand.

“We use (the ‘Hot Jobs’) list as a starting point for career exploration with all of our clients to give them a thorough understanding of which occupations provide the best opportunities for employment,” Mitchell said.


High-demand occupations are defined as those that have significant openings in the current job market, are expected to see considerable growth in the next five years and can lead to self-sufficiency through living wages and opportunities for advancement.

To create the list, West Michigan Works! gathered state labor market information and data from job analytic programs.

The data was then presented to employers for feedback and insight to create an accurate representation of regional hiring needs.

New this year, the list also identified careers approved for training scholarships.

West Michigan Works! said the list is an important internal tool for its staff to begin discussions around career exploration, to identify existing skills that would transfer into high-demand occupations and to inform decisions regarding funding for occupational training.

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