But like all states, there are some cities and towns that don’t have as many opportunities as those around them. These places stick out a bit like sore thumbs in the greater job landscape relative to their better fairing neighbors.
Here at Zippia, we’ve been zig-zagging across the country to help you find the best and worst places in each state to get a job. We most recently set out sights, and data, on Tennessee to help all the current and future Tennesseans out there find the best places to get a job.
After no stone was left unturned, we are left with this set of places as the worst for jobs in Tennessee:
For more TN reading, check out:
After getting the data for all 400+ places in Volunteer, we ultimately decided to limit our analysis to any place with over 5,000 people.
That left us with just over 100 cities.
We then ranked each place across a number of criteria from one to 103, with 1 being the worst in any given category.
Finally, we took the average rank across all criteria, with the place posting the lowest overall score gaining the title “Worst City In Tennessee To Find A Job”.
The criteria we looked at were:
Unemployment Rate: 9.10%
Median Household Income: $26,514
Humboldt will live on in (relative) infamy as the worst place in Tennessee to get a job.
The largest city in Gibson county couldn’t muster up the statistics to lead the county in jobs. The city has the second highest level of unemployment in the Volunteer state and the sixth lowest household median income.
To add insult to injury, Humboldt ranks as having the highest sales tax of any place in the state (as does every other city in the top ten worst).
Not the ideal place to go if you’re looking for a job.
Unemployment Rate: 10.30%
Median Household Income: $27,353
Ripley takes the second spot in our ranking of the worst place to get a job in Tennessee.
The worst unemployment rate in the state put Ripley on the chopping block to be on the worst place in the state for jobs, but (relatively) decent recent job growth and prospects for future job growth kept it from the number one overall worst.
So hopefully Ripley will be on the upswing over the next couple of years.
Unemployment Rate: 7.70%
Median Household Income: $22,165
Newport, TN landed as the third worst place to get a job in Tennessee.
While the small town did not score well across the board, it did particularly poorly when it comes to median household income. At $22,165, it ranks as having the second lowest household median income of any place in the state.
The saving grace for the county seat of Cocke County was a relatively low unemployment rate for a place in our top ten.
Unemployment Rate: 9.10%
Median Household Income: $32,108
While the name Milan will remind you of a city in Italy, Milan, TN’s job situation is more like Greece — not great.
The slightly smaller neighbor of Humboldt, it too suffers from a very high unemployment rate that ranks as second worst in the state.
However, the household median income is significantly larger than Humboldt’s and prevents Milan from placing higher than fourth in this ranking.
Unemployment Rate: 8.10%
Median Household Income: $32,087
Martin takes home the fifth spot on our ranking of the worst places to get a job in Tennessee.
While actually being the largest city on our list, that doesn’t offer Martin enough advantages on the recent job growth front as it ranks as the worst in the Volunteer state.
Combine that with the worst prospects for future job growth and Martin should consider itself lucky it didn’t appear higher on the list.
Unemployment Rate: 8.50%
Median Household Income: $31,778
The number seven ranking on our list goes to McKenzie.
McKenzie is the smallest town in the top ten, but still manages to hold its own when it comes to being less than ideal for jobs.
It ranks as being the bottom ten percent for unemployment rate, recent job growth, and future job growth. Ranking low in the triple crown for jobs always spells trouble on our lists.
Unemployment Rate: 8.30%
Median Household Income: $32,887
Just generally, it’s not a good sign for a town when you Google their name and an ode to a confederate flag shows up as the image. But to make matters worse, Union City does not have a booming job market.
In fact, the small city ranks second worst in the state in terms of recent job growth and future job growth. It also made a bottom ten finish for unemployment rate.
Unemployment Rate: 8.90%
Median Household Income: $27,790
Bolivar placed eighth on our list for the worst places for jobs in Tennessee.
The county seat of Hardeman County, Bolivar also takes the county seat for unemployment rate, ranking as the fourth highest in Tennessee.
Combine that with a household median income towards the bottom of the state and its understandable how Bolivar placed eighth.
Unemployment Rate: 8.50%
Median Household Income: $27,333
Lawrenceburg took the ninth spot on our list of the worst places to find a job in Tennessee.
Being home to David Crockett State Park doesn’t provide enough tourists to raise the unemployment rate — the city ranks as having the sixth worst unemployment rate in the state.
However, recent job growth has been better than any other city in the top ten worst, so there might be some hope for a rebound on the horizon.
Unemployment Rate: 7.30%
Median Household Income: $28,241
And just sneaking onto the list in tenth place is Erwin.
Erwin has the best unemployment rate of any city in the top ten, but still significantly lower than the state average. It also has the best prospects for future growth of any place in the top ten, but, again, still lower than the state average.
Had it not been for a relatively weak showing in household median income, Erin may have been able to keep itself entirely clear of being in the top ten worst places to get a job in Tennessee.
After all the dust settled, and all of our numbers double checked, Humboldt took home the dubious distinction of being the worst place in Tennessee to get a job.
Like all states and places, there are the best and worst parts for jobs. And, in similar fashion to our other analyzes, being further away from a major city will hurt your job opportunities.
So if you’re considering a move, make sure to check in on the local economy. And think of searching in the ‘burbs.