Apr 23, 2024 - News

Our tech boom town

An illustration of a map of the U.S., where each state is splintered and looks like tech.

Illustration: Megan Robinson/Axios

Austin's tech workforce grew faster than any other metro area between 2019 and 2023, while New York City won the biggest share of relocating tech workers and the San Francisco Bay Area continued to dominate AI talent, per new data from VC firm SignalFire.

Why it matters: The U.S. is able to support a growing number of second-tier tech hubs, which also include Seattle and Boston, without undercutting the Bay Area, whose tech workforce continued to grow despite the extra competition and heavy layoffs in 2022 and 2023.

The big picture: Tech dominates the San Jose and San Francisco metro area workforces: Roughly 1 in 4 of all jobs, or about 730,000 jobs, are tech-related, according to data published by the Computing Technology Industry Association.

  • By comparison, Austin has around 180,000 tech jobs, making up roughly 14% of the workforce. That smaller base can make it easier to achieve a higher growth rate.
  • New York's over 549,000 tech jobs represent about 6% of its workforce.

State of play: Austin's VC-backed tech startups grew their workforces by 23% between 2019 and 2023, while the big tech firms grew their teams by 44%, per SignalFire.

  • NYC and Los Angeles' big tech workforces both grew by over 40% in the same period, with NYC winning roughly 1 of every 7 relocating workers in the last year.
  • More than a third (35%) of the country's AI and machine learning specialists are in the Bay Area.

What they're saying: "The bulk of these [employee] moves are remote worker relocations that do not align to their employer locations in all cases," SignalFire's Heather Doshay and Asher Bantock wrote in a blog post.

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