Phoenix ranks No. 16 overall in CBRE’s 2022 Scoring Tech Talent report as North American tech-talent employment bounced back from the pandemic to post job gains across most top markets in 2021, though the industry’s resilience will be tested again amid economic turmoil in 2022, according to a new report from CBRE.
North America added a net 136,000 tech talent jobs last year across established hubs such as the San Francisco Bay Area, New York and Seattle as well as smaller markets like Nashville, Cleveland and California’s Inland Empire. Both tech job growth and tech office leasing proved resilient by rebounding in 2021 from slowdowns in 2020.
Phoenix rose one spot from last year’s ranking due in part to strong tech talent job growth as its tech workforce of 99,660 grew by 18.3% from 2016-2021. Over the past five years, the population of twenty-somethings grew by 62,993 (10.4%) and the population of thirty-somethings grew by 64,248 (10.7%).
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“Despite the pandemic, the last few years have solidified the Phoenix metro area as a tech talent hub,” said Kevin Calihan with CBRE’s Tech & Media Practice in Phoenix. “Phoenix’s tech talent pool is continuing to grow as companies are drawn to Arizona’s business-friendly climate, its ever-growing millennial population, and relatively lower cost of operating than most major markets.”
CBRE’s report, now in its 10th year, ranks the top 50 North American markets by analyzing 13 measures of their ability to attract and develop tech talent, including tech graduation rates, tech-job concentration, tech labor pool size, and labor and real estate costs.
CBRE also ranks the Next 25 emerging tech markets on a narrower set of criteria. Tech talent is defined as 20 key tech professions — such as software engineers and systems and data managers – across all industries.
Phoenix stood out in the report in several key areas:
• Phoenix’s tech talent workforce of 99,600 ranks 16th in total tech talent workforce with 33.7% of tech talent working within the tech industry.
• Phoenix offers affordable living for tech-talent workers, with the average annual apartment rent amounting to 20% of the average tech-talent wage. That ranks 17th among the 50 largest tech-talent markets compared to New York (32%), Los Angeles (29.3%) and South Florida (28.2%), which ranked first, second and third respectively.
• The metro area is an educational market with 26,380 tech degree completions and only 15,410 tech jobs added over the past five years. This means Phoenix has talent available for expanding companies.
• Phoenix is attractive to employers due to its relative value proposition. The average one-year cost for operating a 500-employee tech company occupying 75,000 sq. ft. in Phoenix amounts to $45.6 million. That ranks 22nd most expensive among the top 50 tech talent markets.
To download the full report, click here.