Colorado Springs is one of the top 20 U.S. cities offering the best combination of quality of life and job prospects for technology workers, says a study released Tuesday by the Computing Technology Industry Association.
The 2018 Tech Town Index rankings were compiled from job posting data from August 2017 to this July by CompTIA from 20 metropolitan areas with populations of more than 250,000 where demand for technology workers is greatest. Cities were ranked on cost of living, number of open information-technology positions and expected job growth over the next 12 months and the next five years.
“This study shows you don’t have to live or work in Silicon Valley to have a good technology job. Anyone can get a job in technology anywhere in the U.S. Workers in this industry are in high demand,” said Spencer Bone, executive and spokesman for CompTIA, a suburban Chicago-based trade association for the information technology industry.
The study found 8,356 tech jobs posted in Colorado Springs over the previous 12 months, a median salary of $90,438 for IT professionals and the number of such jobs expected to grow 5 percent over the next five years. By comparison, top-ranked Charlotte, N.C., had 44,464 job postings during the same period, a median IT salary of $87,755 and five-year projected growth of 11 percent for such jobs.
Bone said Colorado Springs stood out because defense contractors serving local military bases have been a key source of information technology jobs, and the city has a cost of living that’s slightly above average, IT worker salaries above the national average and steady job growth in the industry.
Nine of the top 10 employers hiring IT workers in Colorado Springs were defense contractors, including giants Northrop Grumman, General Dynamics and Lockheed Martin. The study said Colorado Springs was “the first city to log onto the world wide web in 1968 and has a rich history of advancing the IT industry.” CompTIA said the Springs is “a natural fit for IT and cybersecurity companies looking to grow.”
Among the 20 cities, the Springs ranked 18th for the ratio of information technology job advertisements to total employment, 18th in number of IT job ads, 11th in cost of living, 10th in cost of living after adjustments for median earnings, 18th for projected job growth in the next year and 16th for projected job growth over the next five years.
Denver ranked eighth, and Boulder ranked 19th, giving Colorado three cities in the top 20. North Carolina also had three cities in the top 20: Besides Charlotte, Raleigh ranked second and Durham-Chapel Hill ranked 15th. California and Texas each had two cities in the top 20: San Jose and San Francisco at fourth and fifth, respectively, in California, and Austin and Dallas-Fort Worth at third and sixth, respectively, in Texas.
Other cities on the list ranged from technology hotbeds such as Boston and Seattle to Des Moines, Iowa; Lansing, Mich.; and Trenton, N.J.
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