Tech employment growing in Colorado
DENVER -- Tech-related employment rose in Colorado by more than 7,100 new jobs in 2018 and the tech sector raised its contribution to the state’s economy, according to Cyberstates 2019, a guide to national, state and metropolitan area tech sector and tech workforce analytics published annually by CompTIA, the leading technology industry association.
Net tech employment grew by an estimated 7,175 jobs in 2018, a 2.5-percent increase over 2017. Since 2010, net tech employment has grown by an estimated 55,000 new jobs. With nearly 293,000 workers, tech accounts for approximately 10.3 percent of Colorado’s workforce.
The tech sector has an estimated directed economic impact of $47.5 billion, or about 14.5 percent of Colorado’s total economy.
"As many states compete to shift companies across state lines, Colorado is focused on capturing growth opportunities from existing firms,” said Michelle Hadwiger, director, global business development at the Colorado Office of Economic Development & International Trade.
“To successfully execute against this strategy, a density of technology talent is not only an important driver, but a requirement to compete.
“Colorado is home to a diverse pool of technology talent that can be attributed to the dynamism of the market,” said Hadwiger. “Colorado is a lower cost market than our coastal peers and we offer a lifestyle and culture attractive to the technology community.
“Colorado values the outdoors and embraces the importance of culture; talent is drawn to places with a diversity of thought and access to a collaborative environment and in Colorado we have built our economy around those attributes."
“Clearly, the broad-based impact of the tech industry touches virtually every community, industry and market across Colorado, especially when you consider the hundreds of thousands of knowledge workers who rely on technology to do their jobs,” said Todd Thibodeaux, CompTIA president and CEO.
The outlook for future employment growth remains positive. Colorado saw a 111 percent increase in the number of job postings related to emerging technologies, such as the Internet of Things, smart cities, drones, artificial intelligence, virtual and augmented reality and blockchain.
Cyberstates projects the base of tech occupation employment -- a subset of net tech employment will grow by 13.5 percent in Colorado by 2026. Retirements will add even more pressure to meet the need for tech talent.
“The findings attest to a tech labor market that will remain tight as employers balance short-term needs with an eye towards the future,” said Tim Herbert, CompTIA’s senior VP for research and market intelligence at CompTIA.
“As digital-human models begin to unfold, employers and employees alike will face new challenges -- and opportunities -- in shaping the workforce of tomorrow.“
Tech occupations that experienced year-over-year growth in Colorado included software and web developers (+ 4.4 percent): computer support specialists (+ 3.3 percent); and network architects, administrators and support specialists (+ 2.2 percent).
The median tech occupation wage in Colorado is $90,434; 97 percent higher than the median wage for all occupations in the state.
Cyberstates 2019 (#cyberstates) is based on CompTIA’s analysis of data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, EMSI, Burning Glass Technologies Labor Insights, and other sources. Estimates for 2018 are subject to change as government data is revised and updated.
The full report, with complete national, state and metropolitan level data, is available at https://www.cyberstates.org/