Grays Harbor County offers a ready-to-go workforce with a solid work ethic, yielding a skilled workforce with the desire to work. We have worked with employers in many different industries who can testify to the ease of finding the skilled employees they needed in Grays Harbor County.

A 2010 study of workforce skills in the unemployed/underemployed population of the five-county Pacific Mountain region, which includes Grays Harbor County, had these key findings:

  • The region has a household population of approximately 476,800; a civilian labor force of approximately 233,300; and a pool of approximately 25,300 unemployed persons who are actively seeking work.
  • Results indicate that new or expanding employers will be able to attract employees from an additional pool of about 40,600 underemployed workers.
  • The desired pay rates of the underemployed workers are reasonable when compared to their existing pay rates. The median current pay rate of the underemployed workers is $21.15 per hour, and their median desired pay rate is $22.75 per hour.
  • Survey results indicate that the underemployed workers have high levels of experience and skills in office operations and customer service.
  • The median desired pay rate of the unemployed workers who are actively seeking work is $12.07 per hour.
  • Survey results indicate that among those actively seeking work, only two percent of the underemployed and 12 percent of unemployed individuals have less than a high school degree.
  • In total, the 5-County Pacific Mountain Region has approximately 72,400 available workers for new or expanding businesses.

Download 33-page report.

See demographic tables of Grays Harbor employment.


Training Incentives and Support

Grays Harbor County has many standard and customized training and education programs available. Grays Harbor College has created many custom programs targeted to individual employer's needs, such as Boat Building, Call Center, truck driving, welding, industrial equipment training and more, and has the ability to tailor training to fit your needs.

State funds are available to train employees and candidates for employment, both in the form of wage subsidies during on-the-job training and grants to the college or other institutions for customized training programs. Direct grants to area businesses may be made available that will pay up to 50 percent of the wages for qualified, full-time trainees for up to a period of three months.


Subsidies are available for on-the-job or customized training for new companies coming to Grays Harbor. Greater Grays Harbor, Inc. works with the local schools, colleges, and community-based service providers to design and fund training that meets each employer's needs.

Training providers include:

Grays Harbor College
WorkSource Grays Harbor


Incentives availability for training include:

  • Up to 70% of actual training costs through Workforce Training and Education Coordinating Board and the Workforce Development Council.
  • Training materials, space, overhead, and trainer salaries.
  • For qualified employees, 100% of on-the-job training costs and up to 50% of trainee wages and pre-employment training costs.

Grays Harbor College

Grays Harbor College is a two-year community college offering an array of academic courses in a broad range of disciplines leading to an Associate Degree. The College offers many scholarship opportunities as well as financial aid for students. Their emphasis is on vocational, technical and professional preparation. The College has formed partnerships with employers to provide customized courses and curriculum to meet their training needs.