Want to work in tech, but Silicon Valley isn’t your style?
Seattle, Washington, DC or Detroit could be your new home. Those three cities have seen the most gains in software-related job postings over the past five years, according to a data analysis that jobs site Glassdoor released Wednesday.
The numbers speak to the rapidly changing definition of a “tech company,” said Andrew Chamberlain, Glassdoor’s chief economist. “Many companies are trying to transform themselves into tech companies,” he said. “Any company that finds itself with a lot of data on its hands, about logistics, pricing or customers and they want to transform that into some kind of product or app somehow, they’ve got to be hiring software developers.”
Glassdoor analyzed all job postings that had “software” in their titles and ranked which cities saw the biggest gains in their share of those postings from 2012 to 2017, showing fast-growing tech scenes. Seattle had the biggest increase in software jobs of any city, up 6.7 percent since 2012. It now makes up 16.9 percent of the software-related job openings posted on Glassdoor. In 2012, it had 10.2 percent of the software-related job openings posted on Glassdoor.
Washington, DC, showed the second-highest amount of growth in software-related jobs: Those jobs grew 1.3 percent between 2012 and 2017. In 2012, the city was home to 5.5 percent of software-related jobs posted on Glassdoor, but in 2017 it is home to 6.8 percent of those postings. Detroit came in third, with an 0.8 percent gain of its share of jobs posted on Glassdoor. Denver and Austin each saw 0.7 percent gains. Still, San Francisco and New York had a 7.9 percent share of software-related jobs posting and 4.9 percent respectively.
Seattle largely topped the list because of retail giant Amazon which has expanded in recent years, Chamberlain said. The company currently has more than 8,000 job openings in Seattle listed on Glassdoor. In recent weeks, the company announced expansions including the introduction of its shopping social network Spark and Amazon Wardrobe, a clothing service that allows customers to try on clothes for up to seven days before returning them if they need to. It also announced a bid for the supermarket chain Whole Foods.
The rise of Amazon, along with other major vendors including Wal-Mart has added many tech-related jobs to the retail sector, Chamberlain said. Retail-related job postings now make up nearly 14 percent of Glassdoor’s software job postings, up 7.5 percent from in 2012. Banking and financial services-related software jobs come in second for fastest growth: They now make up 4.4 percent of Glassdoor’s software-related jobs, an increase of 2 percent since 2012, when they made up 2.4 percent.
Living in a city that is a tech hub but still has a relatively low cost of living can be beneficial to workers, Chamberlain said. Another reason to consider alternatives to San Francisco and New York: These cities are some of the hardest to save money in, even for people making six figures. And when companies look beyond San Francisco and New York, they “have the advantage of bringing people in with diverse backgrounds, workers who come from different industries and have all kinds of past work experiences and skills,” Chamberlain said.