NORTHFORCE on the Rise 

Over the past year, NORTHFORCE, the Northland’s talent community, has undergone a transformation as it continues to best serve the needs of its users. Steadily increasing numbers, new data, and new partnerships help ensure it serves as the premier connection point for employers and jobseekers in its 10-county service area.

NORTHFORCE use continues to increase as jobseekers and employers alike realize what a valuable tool it can be. The program now has over 4,200 job candidates in its system and over 1,080 employers. Increases in both categories have been steady, including a jump in the number of job candidates from outside the region.

Newly gathered data helps show just how powerful a tool NORTHFORCE can be. The average minimum hourly wage for all positions posted on NORTHFORCE exceeds $18 an hour, with maximum hourly wages ranging much higher. Field such as health and wellness, manufacturing, and financial services continue to see substantially more job postings than candidates in the system, showing the opportunities in the vital fields that exist across the Northland. Data also shows a substantial number of jobseekers looking for positions all over the region, with strong interest in the Iron Range, the North Shore, or any location in the 10-county NORTHFORCE region. The numbers behind NORTHFORCE show there are ample well-paying jobs available across its ten-county service area and plenty of talented candidates to fill them.

NORTHFORCE has also enhanced its offerings to assist specific businesses in targeting recruits. Thanks to expanded support from the Department of Iron Range Resources & Rehabilitation, Duluth Economic Development Authority, AAR, and the regional Workforce Development Boards, the program has targeted several job categories and has used national data to target advertising in regions that have high concentrations of employees in desired job categories. As NORTHFORCE improves its ability to target in on critical jobs, the program can be a leader in providing businesses direct solutions to their shortages.

NORTHFORCE is funded in part by the Business Leaders Fund of the Duluth Superior Area Community Foundation. Other sustaining supporters include the Department of Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation, Duluth Economic Development Authority, Duluth Seaway Port Authority, and College of St. Scholastica, plus numerous other public, private, and nonprofit supporters.

Contact Elissa Hansen at for more information.