Tampa FL Tech Workers Drive Growth


July 15, 2016

FujitsuSiemens-Celvin-2The Tampa tech industry scored some big points in CBRE’s annual report on the sector, “Scoring Tech Talent.” 

The report ranks 50 U.S. and Canadian markets based on the ability to attract and grow talent for the technology industry. Tampa, overall, was mostly in the middle, with a ranking of 27. But the city was one of the top ranked small markets in the survey, defined as a market with a tech labor pool of fewer than 50,000 people.

Tampa also placed eighth on CBRE’s list of top momentum markets, which ranks cities based on tech industry employee growth rates from 2010 to 2015. The city’s tech labor pool increased 50.9% during that period. Markets ahead of Tampa on the momentum list are mostly a familiar bunch to area economic development officials, including Charlotte, Nashville and Austin.

Tampa’s push is driven mostly by two factors: a lower cost of living not found in tech powerhouses such as San Francisco and Seattle, and the rise of millennials. “Tech talent markets share several distinct characteristics, including high concentrations of college educated workers, major universities producing tech graduates and large millennial populations,” says
Colin Yasukochi, author of the report, in a statement. 

A good tech labor market, CBRE contends, has other benefits. For example, office asking rents in Tampa have risen 3.8% to $21.02 per square foot from the 2011 first quarter through 2016 first quarter, the report shows. Over the same period, the vacancy rate has dropped 920 basis points to 12.5%, the fourth-largest vacancy rate decrease among the markets included in the CBRE study, behind Austin, Toronto and Vancouver.

“Employment growth in tech occupations has a multiplier effect that spurs economic growth, which in turn drives demand for commercial real estate,” says Quinn Eddins, director of research & analysis for CBRE Florida. “Fortunately, Florida markets have some of the fastest-growing tech talent labor pools in the country.