RetailWorks AZ

Improving the Lives of Arizonans

The RetailWorks AZ initiative supports the important role the retail sector plays in Arizona’s economy and in the lives of many Arizonans, whose first job experience and skills are often acquired in retail. This initiative is the first of its kind for the Greater Phoenix area and has great potential to be a model nationally for a how a region can tap into the economic development opportunities that come from leveraging the retail industry.

Impact of Retail Sector on Arizona Economy

The retail sector in Phoenix provides almost 12% of all jobs in the region. The sector contributed just under $16 billion to the gross regional product in 2015, which is comparable to the manufacturing, finance and health care sectors.

In 2016 Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA) initiated a landscape analysis of the retail sector in the Greater Phoenix area. ACA examined the value of the retail sector to the Phoenix economy, wages, competitive position vis a vis comparable MSA’s and health of the sector and recovery from the recession. Key findings highlight the significance of retail in terms of gross regional product and jobs. The retail sector in Phoenix provides almost 12% of all jobs, and has increased by 22.9% since 2001. The sector contributed just under $16 billion to the gross regional product in 2015, which is comparable to the manufacturing, finance and health care sectors.

Arizona’s Career Ladder

RetailWorks AZ is funded with a nearly $1 million grant from Walmart to develop innovative career advancement approaches in partnership with retail employers, local government, education and workforce development organizations.

Download RetailWorks AZ Overview (PDF)