Alaska Employment Statistics

  • 21,909 employers
  • 321,045 employees
  • $1,070 average weekly wage
  • The average weekly wage is 2.8% below the national average
  • The cost of living is 30.6% above the national average

Types of Employers (Private Sector vs Government Agency)

As an employer in Alaska, you are most likely to be running a private company rather than a government agency. 91.1% of employers run private companies in the state, 5.9% less than the national average of 97.0. The remaining 8.9% of employers are government agencies: 2.5% work in a federal agency, 3.5% work for the state and 2.9% work for local government. The chart below illustrates the breakout of employers by type.
76.7% of employees work for a private company. This is 8.5% below the national average of 85.2%. Local government agencies employ 11.9% of the workers in the state, state government agencies employ 6.8% of the workers and the federal government employs 4.6%. The percentage of employees working for a government agency (23.3%) is 8.5% higher than the national average. The chart below illustrates the breakout of employees by type of employer.
The average weekly wage in Alaska is $1,070 per week, which is 2.8% greater than the national average of $1,101 per week. Alaska workers that are employed by private businesses earn $1,047 per week, 4.8% lower than the national average for private company employees. Employees of federal government agencies in Alaska earn $1,578 per week, a premium of 50.7% compared to what employees of private companies earn. The chart below illustrates the average weekly by type of employer.


Leading Sectors

Businesses by Sector

The sector with the greatest number of businesses in the state is Construction with 11.1% of the businesses in the state. Retail trade (10.6%) and Healthcare (10.0%) round out the top 3 sectors.
Table: Sectors by # of Businesses
Sector# Businesses% of Bus.
Construction2,43511.1%
Retail trade2,31710.6%
Healthcare2,19310.0%
Professional services2,1069.6%
Accommodation and food services2,0739.5%
Other services1,6727.6%
Waste services1,1725.3%
Transport and warehousing1,1575.3%
Finance and insurance7173.3%
Wholesale trade6823.1%
Real estate and rental6773.1%
Arts and entertainment5952.7%
Manufacturing5772.6%
Information3671.7%
Educational services3191.5%
Agriculture and forestry2681.2%
Mining and oil extraction2641.2%
Company management1540.7%
Unclassified1210.6%
Utilities1060.5%


Employees by Sector

The sector with the greatest number of employees in the state is Healthcare with 14.7% of the employees in the state. Retail trade (11.2%) and Accommodation and food services (9.5%) round out the top 3 sectors.
Table: Sectors by # of Employees
Sector# Employees% of Emp'
Healthcare47,12114.7%
Retail trade35,81611.2%
Accommodation and food services30,5009.5%
Transport and warehousing19,9496.2%
Construction15,8204.9%
Professional services12,9174.0%
Manufacturing12,6223.9%
Mining and oil extraction12,4713.9%
Waste services11,5473.6%
Other services9,9503.1%
Finance and insurance6,8392.1%
Wholesale trade6,4392.0%
Information5,6171.7%
Arts and entertainment5,0721.6%
Real estate and rental4,5781.4%
Company management2,8140.9%
Educational services2,4350.8%
Utilities2,1940.7%
Agriculture and forestry1,3900.4%
Unclassified1170.0%


Average Weekly Wage by Sector

The sector that pays their employees the highest is Mining and oil extraction paying $2,668per week compared with the state average of $1,047. Utilities ($1,743) and Company management ($1,667) round out the top 3 sectors.
Table: Wages by Sector
SectorWkly Wagevs St Avg.
Mining and oil extraction$2,668254.8%
Utilities$1,743166.5%
Company management$1,667159.2%
Construction$1,517144.9%
Professional services$1,382132.0%
Transport and warehousing$1,290123.2%
Finance and insurance$1,289123.1%
Information$1,247119.1%
Wholesale trade$1,124107.4%
Unclassified$1,052100.5%
Healthcare$1,04499.7%
Manufacturing$98794.3%
Waste services$89685.6%
Real estate and rental$87483.5%
Agriculture and forestry$86682.7%
Other services$76973.4%
Educational services$64361.4%
Retail trade$61558.7%
Accommodation and food services$47545.4%
Arts and entertainment$43441.5%


Leading Industries

Businesses by Industry

Each broad sector is made up of specific industries. In Alaska. the industry with the most businesses is Restaurants and other eating places with 5.4% of the businesses in the state (with 1,180 employing 18,168 workers). Residential building construction (2.1%) and Offices of physicians (1.9%) round out the top 3 industries. The Top 10 Industries in the state are:
Industry# BusinessesEmp/Biz
Restaurants and other eating places1,18015.4
Residential building construction4563.7
Offices of physicians42320.0
Computer systems design and related services3333.9
Accounting and bookkeeping services3284.1
Hotels and motels except casino hotels30125.1
Commercial building construction2949.0
Offices of dentists2918.3
All other amusement and recreation industries2854.6
Engineering services26213.0


Employees by Industry

The industry with the greatest number of employees in the state is Restaurants and other eating places with 5.7% of the businesses in the state. The industry employs 18,168 in 1,180 businesses, there are 15.4 employees on average in each of these businesses. General medical and surgical hospitals (3.9%) and General merchandise stores including warehouse clubs and supercenters (3.0%) round out the top 3 industries.
Table: Industries by # of Employees
Industry# EmpEmp/Biz
Restaurants and other eating places18,16815.4
General medical and surgical hospitals12,495624.8
General merchandise stores including warehouse clubs and supercenters9,49251.6
Seafood product preparation and packaging8,80860.3
Offices of physicians8,46020.0
Hotels and motels except casino hotels7,54825.1
Support activities for mining6,07142.8
Scheduled air transportation4,98751.4
Supermarkets and other grocery stores3,97632.3
Engineering services3,39313.0


Average Weekly Wage by Industry

The industry that pays their employees the most is Securities brokerage, paying $2,988 compared with the state average of $1,047. Couriers and express delivery services ($2,457) and Portfolio management ($2,417) round out the top 3 industries.
Table: Wages by Industry
IndustryWkly Wage% of Avg
Securities brokerage$2,988285.4
Couriers and express delivery services$2,457234.7
Portfolio management$2,417230.9
Computer and software merchant wholesalers$2,310220.6
Other heavy construction$2,124202.9
Oil and gas pipeline construction$2,110201.5
Highway street and bridge construction$2,084199.0
Medical equipment merchant wholesalers$2,062196.9
Natural gas distribution$1,979189.0
Support activities for mining$1,945185.8


Company Size

Alaska Businesses by Size

The solopreneur company, has the most businesses in Alaska by far. 59.6% of all businesses in the state have fewer than 5 employees. The 19,249 small businesses in the state represent 96.0% of all private businesses. The national average is 92.6%. (Small businesses have fewer than 50 employees, Solopreneurs employ fewer than 5.) The pie chart below illustrates the ratio of business sizes.

Alaska Employees by Business Size

The largest companies in the state represent 82.2% of all employees, which is 56.3% lower than the national average of 138.4%. Smallest companies also employ a lower percentage of the states workforce than the largest companies. The solopreneur (those that employ fewer than 5) companies employ 88.5% of all workers, which is 3.0% lower than the national average of 91.5%. All small companies, those employing fewer than 50 people, represent 565.6% of the labor force in the state, 15.6% more than the national average of 550.0%.

Alaska Avg Weekly Wages by Business Size

The smallest companies in Alaska (those with fewer than 5 employees) pay workers 19.0% less than the national average ($819 per week as compared to the national average of $975 per week). The largest companies in Alaska (those with more than 1,000 employees) pay 19.2% workers below the national average ($1,579 per week as compared to the national average of $1,882 per week).



Data Sources




About the Writer

This page was created and is maintained by Kurt Tietjen, Founder of Stavera, High Peak Media & HomeGearWorks.com. Kurt is an executive, data scientist and software engineer who holds an MBA in Management Information Systems. In 2010, he partnered with scientists at Northwestern University to launch The Street Wire. This was one of the first mainstream uses of what would become “Narrative Science”, an artificial intelligence platform specializing in natural language generation. You can contact Kurt on LinkedIn here.