Evolving Workforces

Non-Tech Companies Seeing More Opportunity to Hire Tech Talent

April 10, 2023 2 Minute Read

Recent technology company layoffs are providing non-tech companies with an opportunity to hire much-needed tech talent to support their business operations. This pool of new prospects consists of about 55,000 hands-on tech workers such as software developers and data managers, or 25% of the 220,000 tech company workers who were laid off since the start of 2022 by U.S. companies. The remaining 75% were in non-tech roles, including sales and marketing, according to CBRE’s analysis of layoffs.fyi data.

Last year, tech companies employed 40% of the 5.4 million total tech workers in the U.S. The tech industry is the top tech talent employer in almost every U.S. market, including more than 50% in the San Francisco Bay Area, Seattle, Austin and Madison, WI.

Figure 1: U.S. Tech Talent Employment by Industry, 2021

Source: U.S. Census, IPUMS and CBRE Research, March 2023.
Note: FIRE is an abbreviation for the finance, insurance and real estate industries.

Only two markets—Jacksonville and Charlotte—have an industry (finance, insurance and real estate, aka FIRE) with a higher share of tech talent workers. Other markets with large shares of tech workers in non-tech industries include Sacramento, Baltimore and Washington, D.C. (all government), Detroit (manufacturing) and Nashville (health care).

Traditionally, tech companies often based location decisions on which markets had the most available tech workers. Today, tech employers are more interested in attracting people with specific tech skills, which often command higher wages. This poses a challenge for non-tech employers when recruiting tech workers. Tech companies pay wages about 16% above the U.S. average and have more workers earning over $150,000 per year than other industries.

Figure 2: Average Annual Wage for U.S. Tech Talent by Industry, 2021

Image of data table

Source: U.S. Census, IPUMS and CBRE Research, March 2023.
Note: FIRE is an abbreviation for the finance, insurance and real estate industries.

To help employers develop their tech talent strategies, CBRE’s 2022 Scoring Tech Talent report quantified tech talent by market, quality and diversity. Our analysis of which industries have the most tech talent in specific markets provides additional insight.

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