Social Impact Employees

A Profile of Employees in the Social Impact Sector

Social impact organizations represent nearly 9 percent of the state’s workforce – over 523,000 employees. This data takes a closer look at this demographic, exploring the size and scope of the social impact workforce.

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What percentage of Illinois workers make up the social impact sector?

Illinois Workforce


Source: 2007-2011 American Community Survey; includes all employed workers

What kind of earning power does the social impact sector have?

Aggregate Earnings of Illinois Employees

Median Earnings of Illinois Employees


Source: 2009-2011 American Community Survey; based on full-time, year round workers with earnings

How important to the economy are social impact sector employees?

Social impact employees are a large portion of key workforce sectors such as family service organizations, hospitals and colleges.

Social impact Employees’ Portion of Key Sectors


Source: American Community Survey, 2009-2011; based on full-time, year round workers with earnings

What percent of the social impact workforce are women?

Percent of Employees Who Are Women


Source: American Community Survey 2009-2011; based on all workers

How skilled are social impact employees?

Employees of charitable nonprofits are highly educated – they are the workers most likely to have a bachelor’s degree or a Ph.D.

Degree Earned


Source: American Community Survey 2009-2011; based on full-time, full-year workers with earnings

Are social impact employees equitably paid?

Employees of social impact organizations earn less than their similarly educated counterparts. Because of their higher education, social impact workers earn more than the median earnings of the for profit sector. But within specific educational categories, social impact workers earn less than the for profit sector in every category.

Median Earnings by Education Level of Nonprofit and Other Workers in Illinois

Educational AttainmentNonprofitFor profitGovernmentSelf employedUnpaid family
Total$45,065$43,759$53,498$31,441$20,365
Not a high school graduate$24,743$25,153$31,182$23,929$10,480
High school graduate or GED only$30,547$33,537$43,655$27,563$23,283
Some college, no degree$35,638$40,537$48,852$30,039$20,788
Associate's degree$43,388$43,655$50,724$31,182$10,585
Bachelor's degree$47,959$62,882$54,049$41,576$20,365
Master's degree$58,040$87,310$63,404$50,912$10,810
Professional or doctorate degree$81,074$116,414$88,350$88,350$41,576

Source: American Community Survey 2009-2011; based on full-time, year-round workers with earnings

Where are social impact workers most often employed?

Industries Employing Social Impact Workers


Source: 2009-2011 American Community Survey; includes all employed workers