Most people who are aware of the Flagstaff Prospector website identify it as a tool for finding commercial office space, buildings or land available for lease or purchase.
But the site is also a number-crunchers dream, providing the most current data available on types of businesses in Flagstaff, dominant job sectors, wages, demographics, housing and more.
“It offers a ton of information for anyone who wants to learn about our community,” said John Saltonstall, Business Retention and Expansion Manager for the City of Flagstaff. He added that while rich in details, the site also has easy-to-digest infographics for those who don’t want to get into the weeds.
Here’s the current snapshot the site offers on Flagstaff and the economics of business:
The top industry for employment is not education or government but accommodations/food services. Hotels, B&Bs, restaurants, bars and caterers are the largest industry sector in terms the number of jobs, with almost 5,600 employees at 300 establishments. The public administration sector, such as local, state, and federal government offices as well as the US Geological Survey, comes in next with 5,051 employees.
The most common job is office/administrative support. Almost 18 percent of the jobs in Flagstaff are office support positions, with sales coming in next and managers/supervisors after that.
Twenty-somethings rule. More than 1 in 4 Flagstaff residents are between the ages of 20 and 29, not surprising in a city with a major university. The median age in Flagstaff is 25.72 years.
Most residents have at least some post-secondary education. According to the statistics, more than 66 percent of Flagstaff residents have had at least some college education, with 22 percent earning bachelor degrees and almost 16.71 percent having graduate degrees. We are very fortunate to have such a highly educated workforce.
Saltonstall noted that the statistics compiled on the site are not just valuable for entities thinking of starting or relocating a business here. As a resource, they can also provide insight as leaders grapple with issues ranging from affordable housing to wage comparisons.
“There’s the opportunity to do more data mining from a third-party objective resource as we move forward with the city’s objectives in economic development,” he said.
Flagstaff Prospector is a service provided by GIS Systems and is used by more than 13,000 communities in 43 states. The license for it in Flagstaff is provided by APS. You can check out the information available on Flagstaff here.