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Indiana Nonprofits

Scope and Community Dimensions
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Indiana Nonprofit Employment: 2009 Update

Nonprofit Employment Report #4
August 2011
Kirsten A. Grønbjerg, Project Director
Kellie L. McGiverin-Bohan, Jacob Knight, Katherine Novakoski
and Virginia Simpson with Kristin Dmytryk and Jason Simons

A Joint Product of the Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University, the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University, the Indiana Business Research Center at Indiana University's Kelley School of Business, and the Johns Hopkins Center for Civil Society Studies

Click to read the press release for this study or the full report. Note: the full report is a large file (1.5 MB) and you will need a free copy of Adobe Reader to read the documents.


Nonprofit organizations continue to make significant contributions to the quality of life for Indiana citizens by offering healthcare, education, job training, access to arts and culture, and opportunities for democratic participation. They are also a major force in the state's economy and in the economic health of all the state's regions.

This 2009 update report presents new information on the size, composition, and distribution of paid employment in Indiana's private nonprofit sector. The fourth in a series of statewide employment analyses, it focuses mainly on 2009 emplyment figures for the state as a whole with some comparions to 2005 and 2007. Subsequent reports will explore trends in nonprofit employment back to 1989 as well as more detailed trend analyses for major nonprofit industries and the state's economic growth regions. It is part of a larger project on Indiana Nonprofits: Scope and Community Dimensions, currently underway at Indiana University, designed to provide solid, baseline information about the Indiana nonprofit sector.

Key Findings

Our report provides detailed analysis of major changes in nonprofit employment since 2005 (including overall trends for the state's metropolitan areas and economic growth regions), analysis of statewide nonprofit employment and wages for 2009, and growth in nonprofit employment and wages for the 2005 to 2007 period.

Major Employment Updates Since 2005

  • The nonprofit sector continues to be a major economic force in Indiana, accounting for nearly 1 out of every 11 paid workers in 2009, up from 1 in 12 in 2005. This is more than twice the number of construction or wholesale trade workers. It also exceeds the number of workers in the accommodation and food industry.
  • Nonprofit employment grew by 5.9 percent between 2005 and 2009, while overall employment fell 5.9 percent and for-profit employment declined by 8.6 percent.
  • Nonprofit employment growth was concentrated in the health and education industries (up 9.6 and 4.8 percent respectively), while nonprofit employment decreased for arts, entertainment and recreation, social assistance, and membership associations.
  • Nonprofit payroll grew by 11.2 percent, more rapidly than nonprofit employment (5.9 percent), despite a decrease in total payroll for the state (down 7.5 percent). The overall increase in nonprofit payroll was driven mainly by education and health care; nonprofit payroll decreased in social assistance and arts, entertainment, and recreation.
  • Nonprofit average annual wages increased from 2005 to 2009 by 5.1 percent (adjusted for inflation) while for-profit average annual wages decreased by 2.7 percent. Nonprofit average annual wages grew the most in education (6.7 percent), membership organizations (5.1 percent) and health (3.2 percent), held steady in social assistance, and actually declined in arts, entertainment and recreation (-3.1 percent).
  • The wage gap between nonprofit and for-profit employees has been reduced by half since 2005. For-profit employees had annual wages 12.5 percent higher than nonprofit employees in 2005; this gap was only 6 percent in 2009.

Other Key Findings

  • The more than 245,600 nonprofit employees earned $8.6 billion in wages in 2009.
  • Over half (54 percent) of all nonprofit employees worked in healthcare, another 13 percent worked in education services, 11 percent in membership associations, 11 percent in social assistance, and 3 percent in arts, entertainment and recreation.
  • Almost all (90 percent) nonprofit employees worked for charities, while only 58 percent of establishments are charities. This is largely because charities include large establishments such as private nonprofit colleges and hospitals.
  • On average, nonprofit employees earned $36,600 per year (those working for charities earn an average of $36,000), reflecting high average wages in hospitals, ambulatory services, universities and colleges, and grantmaking. Indiana's government workers earned an average of $39,000 and for-profit employees $38,300. The latter includes many very low paid workers in the food and accommodation industry.
  • Nonprofit employment is found in nearly every industry in 2009; only mining, public administration, and spectator sports were exceptions.


The report draws on data generated by the Indiana Department of Workforce Development through surveys of Indiana workplaces carried out under the national Covered Employment and Wages (CEW) labor market information program administered by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics as part of the unemployment insurance program. These data, compiled from quarterly reports submitted by employers in compliance with U.S. and Indiana law, were prepared for us by the Indiana Business Research Center at Indiana University's Kelley School of Business under a confidentiality agreement with the state.

For information about the methodology used in this report and for additional tables, please see the Appendices at the bottom of this page. 


Our report includes several appendices with supplementary information. They include:

  • Appendix A: The ES-202 Unemployment Insurance Labor Market Information Program 
  • Appendix B: Nonprofit Employment in Indiana, by Metropolitan Statistical Area, 2009
  • Appendix C: Nonprofit Employment in Indiana, by Economic Growth Region, 2009
  • Appendix D: Nonprofit Employment in Indiana, by County, 2009
  • Appendix E: Total Employment, Payroll and Wages for Select Industries in Indiana, 2009
  • Appendix F: Nonprofit and Charitable Employment by Industry in Indiana, 2009
  • Appendix G: Nonprofit Employment, Payroll and Wages for Select Industries in Indiana, 2009
  • Appendix H: For-profit Employment, Payroll and Wages for Select Industries in Indiana, 2009
  • Appendix I: Government Employment, Payroll and Wages for Select Industries in Indiana, 2009
  • Appendix J: Distribution of Indiana Nonprofit Employment by IRS Reporting Status, 2005, 2007, 2009


This report was prepared as part of an ongoing project from the Indiana Nonprofits: Scope and Community Dimensions project made possible by the Efroymson Fund at the Indianapolis Foundation (an affiliate of the Central Indiana Community Foundation) through its support for the Efroymson Chair in Philanthropy; the Indiana University Center on Philanthropy through its Indiana Research Fund (supported in part by Lilly Endowment Inc.) and its ongoing support for the Efroymson Chair in Philanthropy; and the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University through its ongoing support for the Efroymson Chair in Philanthropy.

We are grateful to Carol O. Rogers, Victoria Nelson, and Jerry Conover at the Indiana Business Research Center at Indiana University's Kelley School of Business for making the data on which this report is based available to us and for very helpful comments on the draft. We also thank Kerry S. Brock for her help in preparing the basic framework for our analysis. Finally, we thank members of the Advisory Board for the Indiana Nonprofits: Scope and Community Dimensions project for helpful comments and suggestions. We are particularly grateful to Roger Frick of the Indiana Association of United Ways and Bob Cross of United Way of Central Indiana for helpful comments on our analysis.