In the previous post on Wood Products’ history in Oregon, I asked for a good source of information to illustrate industry productivity. Our good friends over at the Employment Department sent us some work they did on the topic and I have reproduced two of their graphs. Based on their work, the industry trends are certainly clear.
This first graph was produced by Andre Harboe, an economist at Employment and former OEA intern, using BEA data.
This second graph was produced by Brian Rooney, regional economist and Nick Beleiciks, state employment economist. The source of the data is Western Wood Products Association and the graph illustrates actual sawmill productivity. The combination of worker productivity increases and mill productivity increases means that the mills are not nearly as labor intensive (i.e. jobs) as they used to be.
Thanks again to the Employment Department for their help on this. In case you didn’t know about it, you should read their blog and follow them on Twitter to stay on top of all their releases and reports.