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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Office Hours

Spokane, Washington make solid gains in high-tech sector over past 2 years

A recent study by  the Bay Area Council Economic Institute found that Washington state has the largest concentration of tech jobs in the United States, comparing tech jobs among all jobs in the state.

Washington's percentage is 11.4 percent of all private jobs.The full study can be found here.

Also notable is that Spokane shows up among the positive job-gainers in the tech sector. The chart here from that study finds Spokane at No. 23 out of the top 25 metros that gained tech jobs from 2010 to 2011. Job numbers came by way of the Bureau of Labor Statistics, according to the Bay Area institute.

The Spokane growth rate was 7.7 percent change in total high tech jobs.

Notably, that growth was focused in those two years. The Bay Area study also lists the top 25 job gainers from 2006 to 2011, and Spokane is not to be found. Leading that list, notably, is Boise. Over those five years Boise racked up a popping 83 percent job gain in high tech. 

The key takeaways: high-tech jobs tend to be concentrated in well-known tech hubs... High-tech employment growth, on the other hand, is happening in a more geographically and economically diverse set of regions. Growth is occurring in the Rust Belt and the South, as well as along the coasts and in regions with many high-skilled workers.

Overall, employment growth in the high-tech sector has been robust, outpacing employment growth in the broader private sector at regular intervals in the recent past. Unemployment in the high-tech sector  workforce has generally been low, particularly when compared to the broader national unemployment  rate. Finally, the distribution of high-tech jobs around the country has increased significantly during the last two decades.

Tom Sowa
Tom Sowa covers technology, retail and economic development and writes the Office Hours blog.