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The Houston metro area is the most racially and ethnically diverse region in the United States and the fifth most populous metro with 7 million people. The Houston region offers a diverse and highly-skilled labor force of more than three million workers, larger than that of 35 states. The area is also a growing hub for young talent. Houston is a top 10 city for attracting millennials and ranks No. 1 in retaining college graduates. 

33.3 percent

One-third of Houstonians 25 years and older is a college graduate


Houstonians with a science, engineering or related degree

1.5 million

Number of Houstonians 25 years or older with a bachelor degree

Houston Workforce at a Glance

Houston has the skilled workers necessary for a wide range of industries from professional services to health care and advanced manufacturing to aerospace. 

Houston consistently ranks among the nation's leaders when it comes to job growth. A strong economy with expanding businesses, numerous universities and technical schools and a relatively low cost of living that draws new residents combine to make this one of the fastest growing regions in the U.S. 


Working Population


Average weekly wage


Average pre-tax, per capita income


Population with a bachelors degree or higher

Between 2015 and 2040, the Texas-based economic forecasting firm the Perryman Group expects population growth averaging 1.6 percent annually in the Houston region. Over the same period, Perryman forecasts wage and salary employment to rise at a 1.7 percent annual rate. 

The Houston region is home to more than 20 universities and colleges, including three Tier 1 universities. Houston-area colleges and universities educate nearly 220,000 students annually and graduated nearly 55,000 students.

In addition, another estimated 200,000 students are enrolled annually in local community and technical colleges. There is also a regional focus on developing tomorrow's workforce through educating young people on emerging industries and re-training mid-career professionals for high-demand careers. Houston has developed a strong bridge between the talent needs of various industries and the educational programs being offered through colleges, universities and technical programs.

A City Full of Hidden Talent

Houston is often linked directly to energy, and rightfully so as the region's largest industry. But in recent decades Houston has diversified its economy and greatly expanded industries such as health care and technology. That diversification coupled with low cost of living is attracting new residents from across the country and around the world. What's more, the region is home to more than 20 universities and colleges, including three Tier 1 universities. These institutions educate nearly 220,000 students annually and graduate nearly 55,000. Another 200,000 students are enrolled annually in local community and technical colleges.
More Than Just Energy
Fortune 500 Companies
Industry Organizations

Diversity Drives Innovation

People from many different faiths, cultures, lifestyles and customs find a home in the nation's most diverse city. It's that unique blending of people that breeds innovation. Houston is a city that chooses to take humankind's boldest challenges head-on. An unabashedly pro-growth and opportunity rich city fueled by innovators and America's youngest workforce, Houston offers a highly educated talent pool. 

Closing the Skills Gap with UpSkill

In June 2014, the Greater Houston Partnership created UpSkill Houston—among the nation’s first business-led collaborations working with education and community stakeholders—to help close Houston’s skills gap by aligning collective efforts to pursue three fundamental objectives: Attract unemployed and underemployed Houston residents and youth to advanced technical and craft careers across the region; Train individuals in the technical and employability skills necessary for success; and Place and retain these workers in careers that reward those who continue to upgrade their skills.

Building Houston's Future Workforce

With a talented and diverse workforce of more than 3.1 million people, the Houston region is one of the most dynamic employment centers in the nation. Area employment is now higher than at any point in Houston's history and a significant supply of recent college graduates in a wide array of fields continues to strengthen the large professional talent pool throughout the Houston region.

Talent Resource Group

Launched in 2019, the Partnership's Talent Resource Group (TRG) provides HR professionals, ERG leaders and recruiters with access to information to grow their companies most important resource: talent. Topics will address talent attraction, retention, enhancing corporate culture as well as continuing education needs for HR professionals. 

Meet Us at an Upcoming Event


Houston DiverseCity Summit

Early-bird pricing ends Friday, September 22! The Houston DiverseCity Summit is more than an event, it is an interactive experience catalyzing change, inspiring action and supporting companies across the Houston region in their collective efforts to create opportunity for all.  Designed for business leaders and practitioners, this one-day symposium offers real-world insights on how to navigate the changing landscape around diversity, equity and inclusion. The case is clear. Businesses poised to flourish within our region understand how to deliver value while nurturing inclusivity and equity to harness the full spectrum of human potential. Houston DiverseCity Summit includes:  15+ speakers, thought leaders and experts offering diversity, equity and inclusion best practices and actionable insights applicable to all underrepresented groups Key findings and industry insights from the 2023 Houston Regional Equity & Inclusion Assessment Five interactive breakout sessions discussing emerging ideas and practical strategies to improve outcomes, enhance culture, ensure legal compliance and navigate organizational change Peer learning and networking to help participants connect and collaborate with regional leaders Luncheon conversation featuring thought leaders with real-world success stories Strategic insight into the evolving landscape around DEI and how it impacts the Houston business community Full Summit Agenda: Morning Plenary Presenting highlights of the 2023 Houston Regional Equity & Inclusion Assessment. Debby Asuquo, Principal, Boston Consulting Group LaTanya Flix, Senior Vice President of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Greater Houston Partnership Ilshat Haris, Managing Director and Partner, Boston Consulting Group Katie Pryor, Chief Development Officer, Senior Vice President of Member Engagement Greater Houston Partnership   Breakout Sessions Inclusive Leadership: Pivotal Proficiency for Managers Inclusive leadership has emerged as a critical competency on both an individual and organizational level that improves workplace culture and delivers tangible business value. Explore the managerial skills and practices that enable leaders to deliver enhanced outcomes for their teams, companies, and the broader community. Moderator: Janet Huber, Senior Vice President & Director of Diversity Equity and Inclusion, BOK Financial Derek R. Avery, Ph.D., C. T. Bauer Chair of Inclusive Leadership in the Bauer College of Business at the University of Houston Enrica Ruggs, Associate Professor of Management, Associate Editor, Journal of Management, Associate Editor, Journal of Business and Psychology Creating Opportunity for All: Where to from here? Companies need actionable, comprehensive strategies to foster the recruitment, retention, and advancement of underrepresented groups. In the aftermath of the Supreme Court decision on affirmative action, how can organizations ensure their DEI practices are grounded in fair treatment? Examine how the new legal landscape impacts corporate decision-making, explore the factors for success in achieving measurable, scalable, and sustainable DEI, and how to recalibrate when needed. Moderator: Arianne Dowdell, Vice President and Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer for Houston Methodist Roland Garcia, Shareholder, Greenberg Traurig Christina Jones, VP, HR Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Shell USA Inc. Alveda Williams, Ph.D., Chief Inclusion Officer, Dow, Inc. The Evolution of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) and Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) As employee, investor, consumer, and supplier expectations evolve, the demand for transparency and accountability has only increased. Gain insight into the synergy between DEI, CSR, and ESG and learn the tools required for your team to manage the accompanying tough conversations, polarized opinions, and stakeholder demands. Moderator: David Feldman, Supply Chain Advisor – Supplier Diversity, Chevron Kristin Major, Chief Talent Officer, HPE Antonio Robinson, SVP - General Counsel, Secretary & Chief Compliance Officer, Carter's Kristin Starodub, Principal, Deloitte Consulting How DEI Delivers Change Power When companies successfully implement DEI policies and practices, they also improve their ability to successfully implement and manage other types of organizational change. This newfound agility increases employee engagement, strengthens culture, and boosts financial performance. Explore why DEI helps companies become more adaptable and build their “change power” and how leaders can capitalize on this correlation. Moderators: Alex Noether, Expert Partner, Bain & Company and Kevin Murphy, Expert Partner, Bain & Company Ashley Coombs, Director of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Camden Jobi Martinez, Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer, Harris Health System Qiara Suggs, Senior Vice President and Chief HR Officer, TDECU DEI: The Engine of Competitive Enterprise Performance  The business value of DEI encompasses not only a company’s impact in the community but also, crucially, its competitive performance. Identify the key drivers that power scalable progress, discover strategies that place suppliers at the core, and learn how to gain a competitive edge through robust and strategic DEI. Melissa Moye, Senior Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer, Enbridge Ingrid Robinson, President/CEO, Houston Minority Supplier Development Council Kelly Rooney, Chief HR and Diversity & Inclusion Officer, Waste Management Moderator: Suzanne Skipper, Managing Partner and Director, BCG Luncheon Speakers: Bob Harvey, President and CEO, Greater Houston Partnership Dr. Melanie Johnson, President and CEO, Collaborative for Children Katie Pryor, Chief Development Officer, Senior Vice President of Member Engagement Greater Houston Partnership 2023 Regional Assessment Key Insights & Panel Moderator: LaTanya Flix, SVP, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Greater Houston Partnership Panel Conversation Organizational Change as a Driver for Value Creation and Positive Impact  Business leaders today are navigating economic and demographic shifts that require a strong focus on bolstering inclusion and removing barriers for underrepresented groups. Our C-suite panel will share thoughts on how organizations can adapt to new challenges and opportunities and deliver meaningful change at scale. Dr. Marc L. Boom, President and CEO, Houston Methodist  Antonio Robinson, SVP - General Counsel, Secretary & Chief Compliance Officer, Carter's Pamela Skaufel, Chief Procurement Officer and Vice President, ExxonMobil Join us for the only local event that highlights the collective action of the business community to reduce inequities, amplifies DEI thought leaders and offers data-informed strategies to catalyze organizational change.  Sponsorship opportunities are filling quickly for this event! As a sponsor of this impactful event, your company will be highlighted among business and community leaders dedicated to DEI and aligned with unique content focusing on best practices, peer connection, and first-rate resources to help you mature DEI strategies for companies and organizations of all sizes. View the sponsorship opportunities for this event here. For more information on sponsorship, please contact Terry Leibowitz at or 713-824-2403.

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Get in touch with our team to assist with additional Talent questions, such as:

  • Workforce economy statistics 
  • Economic and employment data 
  • Assistance with skills development training
Craig Rhodes
Vice President, Regional Economic Development
Economic Development
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