States focusing on building technology sectors, adding jobs


States focusing on building technology sectors, adding jobs
States focusing on building technology sectors, adding jobs.

States are increasingly seeing the importance of building a strong technology sector, with many finding that by nurturing technological development, it often leads to new jobs, and in turn, higher economic output for the state. 

According to the Dallas Morning News, Texas, California and New York have all turned up the heat when it comes to creating more technology jobs, with these states leading the push for new business campuses, offices and other incentives to attract technology companies to their borders. Texas is a great example of how nurturing the industry can have huge returns. 

Though it's widely accepted that the energy sector is the one of the largest job-creating industries in the state, the technology industry also has a major influence. New data show that nearly 10,000 technology jobs were created in Texas in 2012, pushing total technology employment up to nearly 500,000 - twice that of the energy sector as a whole.

Continued growth
But the state doesn't plan to put technology hiring on the backburner anytime soon. With Yahoo buying Tumblr for $1 billion last week, many officials say this should be an indicator that the sector will only see massive growth in the years ahead. 

New York, which Tumblr calls home, has seen huge amounts of venture capital injected into the technology industry, and other seed accelerators have appeared all over the state, helping the state create even more technology jobs. 

Matthew Kazmierczak, a researcher at the TechAmerica Foundation, said that state and municipal officials regularly ask him how to attract more high-tech, successful companies. What it comes down to, he says, is a large talent pool that is filled with extremely talented workers. 

"That's often tied to good universities and research centers," he said. "They fuel the pipeline of ideas."

For this reason, states have started investing more in research and development, as well as forming new science labs. Across the country, 12 percent of all jobs are in R&D, with California, New York, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania all boasting exceptional high levels of R&D positions.

However, according to the news source, Texas is hoping to join the ranks of these states soon. Already, the state has about 100,000 workers employed as internet and telecommunications specialists, software developers and computer engineers, and Austin is quickly becoming one of the top technology hubs in the country.

Booming areas
The Dallas/Fort Worth area will also be a point of focus, where 38 percent of the state's technology jobs are already located.

Still, California, and Silicon Valley specifically, is still one of the best places for tech jobs in the country.

"Several investors said they'd write us a check if we'd move to California," said MeLinda McCall, CEO of mobile app development company Proxomo.

According to the media outlet, those writing the checks stated their goal was to keep California and the West in general the leading region for technology employment. However, the company plans to stay in Texas, where business is looking promising.

"We dug our boots in, because we believe Texas can maintain an ecosystem, too," McCall said.

The focus on boosting employment in technology sectors around the country may have also contributed to the higher number of technology manufacturing jobs reported. According to a recent report from Jones Lang LaSalle, high-tech manufacturing employment is expected to inrease 0.7 percent by 2018, marking a turnaround from the annual declines that have been reported in the industry. 

The report noted that the industry is bouncing back from the lows it hit during the recession, which came just as many jobs were shipped overseas where labor is cheaper. However, as wages rise overseas, it is expected to help create many more high-tech manufacturing jobs.

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