Utah ranks among top 10 states to work in tech industry, new study finds


Adobe employees walk through Lehi’s office March 23, 2016. Utah is the ninth-best state for working in the tech industry, according to new research by document management firm SmallPDF. (Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News)

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SALT LAKE CITY – Utah has long made a name for itself in the tech industry, with Silicon Slopes featuring companies like Adobe, Microsoft, Domo and Oracle.

Now he can add another accolade to his list: ranking in the top 10 best states to work in tech.

Utah is No. 9, according to new research from document management company SmallPDF.

It analyzed data such as salaries, employment rates and vacancies to create its list, according to a press release.

Utah gets its ranking due to a high concentration of existing tech jobs in the state, with 39.09 jobs per 1,000 being tech positions, according to SmallPDF analysis. Additionally, there are 62.38 vacancies in technology available per 100,000 people.

The company also found that the average annual salary in Utah technology jobs is $86,600, with 27.1% of that salary going toward rent. To find that percentage, SmallPDF weighed the average annual salary against the state’s average annual rent, the press release says.

Utah’s technological prowess was on display at last year’s Silicon Slopes Summit. Cicero CEO Trent Kaufman presented data collected in partnership with BYU that showed “what we have in Utah is an all-out talent war going on”; while Apple CEO Tim Cook told Sen. Mike Lee in a fireside chat that in Utah tech companies he saw people who wanted to change the world.

Just below Utah in the rankings is Nebraska, with an average salary of $81,090, of which 17.55% is spent on rent; 32.63 technology jobs per 1,000 jobs; and 52.4 technology vacancies per 100,000 people.

In the top spots are Virginia at No. 1, Maryland at No. 2, and Washington at No. 3.

According to research by SmallPDF, Virginia’s average annual tech salary is $110,510, of which 21.68% is spent on rent. The state has 58.44 tech jobs per 1,000 jobs and 128.97 tech job vacancies per 100,000 people.

that of Maryland is $110,790, including 19.97% for rent; and Washington’s is $124,000, including 21.24% for rent. Maryland has 54.35 tech jobs per 1,000 jobs and 116.27 tech job vacancies per 100,000 people. Washington has 59.32 tech jobs per 1,000 people and 61.69 tech vacancies per 100,000 people.

The other top 10 states, from fourth to eighth, are Colorado, Massachusetts, Delaware, Minnesota and New Jersey.

SmallPDF also found Mississippi to be the worst state to work in tech, the press release said, with an average annual salary of $70,870; 11,857 technological jobs for 1,000 jobs; and 16.03 technology vacancies per 100,000 people.

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