The job market in El Paso and Teller counties has rebounded impressively from the pandemic, according to data from the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment. The region recovered 125.8% of the jobs lost as a result of the pandemic last July.
The agency bases its geographic statistics on Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA). The Colorado Springs MSA is one of seven in the state. It is made up of El Paso and Teller counties.
Cecilia Harry is director of economic development at the Colorado Springs Chamber and Economic Development Corporation. She says the Pikes Peak area is home to many industries that aren’t as impacted by economic challenges, such as the military, aerospace and cybersecurity.
“We have a lot of major employers in this space and because of what they do to keep us safe and protected as a country no matter what happens with the economy, we tend to see those better. industries, to better overcome economic challenges.”
Harry said his office continually strives to remove barriers to growth and support existing businesses.
“We’re extremely busy right now working with existing businesses that tell us they want to grow and they want to create more jobs,” Harry said. “And we’re incredibly busy with companies that aren’t in our market yet, but are strongly considering investing here.”
And while the area has shown resilience when it comes to offsetting job losses due to COVID, it has lagged behind the Grand Junction area when it comes to job recovery. The West Slope recouped all of the jobs lost to the pandemic a month ahead of El Paso and Teller counties.
Nationally, the Colorado Springs MSA ranks 65th in fastest recoveries. The Logan, Utah MSA currently has the fastest recovery rate at 294.1%, according to the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment.