Philadelphia, Newark Rating Effectively in Creating, Attracting Tech

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Rija Beares, first vice president of CBRE.

Rija Beares, first vice president of CBRE

PHILADELPHIA – Philadelphia and Newark still haven't cracked the nation's top 10, but they have improved their respective reputations for creating and attracting technical talent.

CBRE has ranked Philadelphia 22nd in the US and Canada for tech talent in its annual Scoring Tech Talent report. That year, Philadelphia rose from 24th in last year's rankings.

The top five markets for tech talent in 2019 were the San Francisco Bay Area, Seattle, Toronto, Washington, DC, and New York, all large markets with a tech workforce of more than 150,000. The top 10 in this category were rounded off by Austin, TX; Boston; Denver, Atlanta and Raleigh-Durham, NC.

The report notes that among the more notable trends in the Philadelphia tech sector is that the Philadelphia market has produced 7,905 more tech graduates in the past five years than the market could employ in tech careers. The region produced more than 4,800 new tech graduates in 2017, up 32% over the past five years.

"There's so much well-deserved tech buzz in Philadelphia right now, and it's no surprise we're improving the tech talent ranks," said Rija Beares, first vice president of CBRE. "Not only is Philadelphia growing organically, but it is poised to attract out-of-market companies looking for that combination of technical talent and a real city with a known culture and accessibility."

The rent-to-tech wage ratio is relatively low at 17.0%, according to the CBRE report. The median home rental for a year in 2019 is $ 16,438 ($ 1,370 / month) and the median annual tech wage is $ 96,706. In the most expensive market, New York City, those numbers are $ 49,445 ($ 4,120 / month) or $ 113,500 (a rent to wage ratio of 43.6 percent).

Another notable demographic for Philadelphia is that it is the fourth largest market for gender diversity in technical occupations, at 71.5% men and 28.5% women.

Newark, NJ, is also emerging as a technology hub. CBRE reports that the total number of technical occupations in the city of Newark increased 9.7% from 2013 to 2018.

The report ranks Newark as one of the key East Coast markets with more than 53,000 engineering jobs primarily focused on software development, computer programming and database systems management.

In the past five years, the Newark subway has produced 6,153 more tech graduates than the market could employ. The region produced more than 2,750 new tech graduates in 2017, up 57.3 percent over the past five years.

"Newark has the ideal combination of highly qualified and talented people and is conveniently located near Manhattan," said Dudley Ryan, SVP at CBRE. "As one of the top tech hubs on the East Coast and the largest port on the East Coast, Newark's technology sector is well positioned after the Port of Los Angeles on the West Coast to grow in both technology and logistics."

Newark's rent-to-tech wage ratio is relatively low at 18.6%. The median home rent for a year in 2019 is $ 20,597 ($ 1,716 / month) and the median annual tech wage is $ 110,772.

Greater New York is the most gender-specific market for technical professions, with 71.7% men and 28.3% women.

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