Northeast Ohio Manufacturing Is Rebounding, Expecting Bright Future

Economic development groups reveal state of manufacturing in Northeast Ohio

CLEVELAND, OH – February 14, 2018 – In partnership with MAGNET: The Manufacturing Advocacy and Growth Network, Team Northeast Ohio (Team NEO) today released a report that indicates the region is rebounding from the Great Recession of 2007, nearly matching pre-recession output levels, and outpacing the nation as a whole in productivity gains. The report was released today at MAGNET’S rollout event featuring results of its 2018 Northeast Ohio Regional Manufacturing Survey.

“We found manufacturing executives are overwhelmingly optimistic and have every reason to be, as confirmed by Team NEO’s research,” indicated Ethan Karp, MAGNET president and CEO. “The survey reveals that regional manufacturing companies saw their workforces and revenues grow in 2017, and expect that growth to continue in 2018.”

William Koehler, CEO of Team NEO, added, “As this research demonstrates, Northeast Ohio’s productivity is well above the national average, providing businesses financial and speed advantages that make our region highly attractive for manufacturers and other industries. Our workforce, supply chain, lower costs and culture of innovation mean that manufacturing will continue to be a driver of our economy far into the future.”

Report findings include Northeast Ohio’s productivity increase of 16 percent from 2007 to 2017, compared to a U.S. increase of 12 percent for this same time period. Increases in manufacturing output are expected in the next five years in high-tech sectors including computers and electronic products.

Other notable economic indicators related to Northeast Ohio’s 18 counties include:

  • GRP is projected to grow 2.7 percent in 2017, to reach $236 billion
  • Total employment is at 1.937 million
    • Employment has increased by 5,000 jobs year-over-year
  • The unemployment rate has increased year-over-year
    • Northeast Ohio’s unemployment rate averaged 5.5 percent in Q2 2017, an increase from 5.2 percent in Q2 2016
  • The services and construction sectors have grown year-over-year
    • The services sector has added nearly 4,000 jobs since Q2 2016, while construction added nearly 3,000 workers over the same time period
  • Well production activity continues to grow
    • There are 1,024 wells in production statewide

Team NEO publishes the Cleveland Plus Economic Review quarterly to provide a holistic picture of Northeast Ohio’s economy. It is the only regular source of collective economic data for the 18-county region. The nonprofit organization uses this information to attract new businesses and jobs to Northeast Ohio and help those that are here grow.

Team NEO uses Moody’s, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data, and Ohio’s Labor Marketing Information to aggregate regional figures.

Download the Report

About Team NEO

Team NEO is an economic development organization focused on creating jobs for Northeast Ohio residents. In collaboration with our partners, it leads the region’s business attraction efforts, supports business retention and expansion work as Northeast Ohio’s JobsOhio affiliate, accelerates the impact of innovation in the region, and aligns strategies and resources within the economic development network to maximize its impact. In addition, Team NEO provides tools to assist employers in attracting talent to the region. For more information, visit


For more than 30 years, MAGNET has offered a wide range of capabilities to manufacturers as part of the national NIST-MEP and Ohio Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP). These services, which include product and process development, workforce initiatives, and lean/operations consulting, help companies by improving revenue and job retention, as well as driving manufacturing and economic development in Northeast Ohio.