Survey: Minneapolis #10 Most Affordable Tech City

Top 10 Affordable Tech Cities

I haven’t had one of these in a while.

By “these” I mean a survey that once again points out the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St Paul are a great place to live and work.

This one comes from => Silicon Valley Is Over! Top 10 Cities Where Techies Can Actually Afford to Live and starts with:

“Back in his mid-20s, John Malone was right where he'd always dreamed he would be: working as a software engineer in San Francisco. Yet even with a full-time job, Malone found himself "totally broke. I lived in a three-bedroom house with six other guys."

Realizing he could never afford to buy (or even rent) his own place, Malone started searching for work back where he'd grown up in Minneapolis. He was pleasantly surprised to find plenty of tech jobs offering decent salaries—and (the clincher) affordable homes.”

This story is one we have seen repeated many, many times the past years of people moving to or back the region to find a good quality of life, good jobs and reasonably priced homes.

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St Paul #10 Best City For Women In Tech

Top 15 Cities For Women In TechFor the past five years SmartAsset has put together data (gender pay gap, income after housing costs, tech jobs filled by women and four year employment growth) and ranked them. Click The Best Cities for Women in Tech in 2019 for this years survey.

St Paul appears on the list (again) ranking #10:

St. Paul ranks in the top 15 for only one of our metrics: It lands at 12th for gender pay gap. But while it doesn’t hit the heights in any single metric, it also won’t leave women in tech with much to complain about. St. Paul ranks no worse than 33rd in any single metric — in the income after housing data point — and ranks in the top 20 in two metrics.

Minneapolis appears on the larger list at #42.

As I do… I take a look to see where we rank compared to other cities in the “Midwest”… #7 Kansas City, #11 Detroit, #14 Indianapolis & #33 Chicago.

Previous year rankings:


#6 St Paul

  • No city in our study has a faster growing tech industry than St. Paul. According to our data, the number of tech jobs grew by 41% from 2013 to 2016.
  • Women are fairly well-represented in the tech industry. Women in St. Paul occupy 26.4% of total tech jobs and the average women earns 89% of what the average man earns.

#35 Minneapolis

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Minneapolis #4 Best City In The U.S. To Find A Tech Job

Best Cities In The U.S. To Find A Tech Job

Survey time again (I’ll have another tomorrow)… this one from AgileCraft and their post Best Cities for Tech Jobs in the US. They “… looked at some of the most demanded tech jobs as well as EMSI US Occupation hiring and salary data to come up with some interesting results.” I think by “interesting” they mean not what the average Jane or John Doe would be thinking. For those (I am one) who are always crunching numbers and analyzing surveys these numbers are what I expect to see.

Their Top 10 Cities Hiring The Most For Tech Jobs:

  1. Atlanta
  2. Seattle
  3. Salt Lake City
  4. Minneapolis
  5. Hartford
  6. St Louis
  7. San Francisco
  8. Miami
  9. Pittsburgh
  10. Boston

That’s right… Minneapolis is #4. Maybe it’s interesting to see Hartford and Miami on the list. The rest of the cities have all been seeing considerable job growth. Minneapolis, Atlanta and Salt Lake City frequently are mentioned as top “Tier II” cities behind the Bay Area, Seattle, New York City, Boston and Austin.

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2019 Minnesota Jobs Prediction

Roller Coaster

I tend to stay away from making predictions… I don’t have a crystal ball that tells the future. If I did I likely would not be writing this post right now. When I was a kid I did have a Magic 8 Ball. Those were the best. Didn’t like your answer? Try again. Or do 2 of 3 or 4 of 7.

But I do trends.

I am always reading economic surveys, watching CNBC and Bloomberg, reading company quarterly reports, scanning Glassdoor company reviews, looking at Indeed and Google Jobs. Anything that when combined with other bits of data show trends. Sometimes new data jives with what I have been thinking and other times it shows some change.

Late 2017 while prepping for our end of the year MSP On Deck Podcast we each were going to make a prediction. I knew mine right away.

I went with this… that in 2018 the Minnesota jobs scene and particularly the Minnesota tech jobs scene was going to see greater churn. By churn I meant that we would see more companies hiring, more companies laying off and restructuring and for a variety of factors more people taking a look at what might be available to them in a new job, career or employer.

While I can’t point to a particular survey or chart… I am claiming a win on that prediction.

If you ask corporate and search firm recruiters… most experienced a busier year of recruiting. If you ask managers, directors and those who run teams if they had a harder time retaining people… most will say yes.

Remember the gopher from CaddyShack and how he would stick his head up from underground to see what was going on outside? That’s what a lot more people did in 2018. They all didn’t move but more were willing to take a look.

Now to my 2019 Minnesota Jobs prediction… I’m not taking a big leap with this one.

I am predicting even more churn in 2019.

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Minnesota #8 On Tech And Science Index

18 Milken Institute State Tech and Science Index Map

If you’ve stopped by here a few times you are aware that I love a good survey, ranking or index. It’s why I like sports… every day you can look in a newspaper or online and find out if your team is winning, losing, where it ranks and how it is trending.

In this case my team is Minnesota and I like to gauge how we are doing, trending and comparing.

The Milken Institute released their 2018 State Technology and Science Index, something they do every 2 years, and it always has a lot of data to look at.

For 2018 Minnesota ranks #8, -1 from 2016.

From the report:

Minnesota drops one spot to end up eighth on the 2018 STSI. After a strong performance in 2016, Minnesota’s score decreased by 6.47 points to 63.11. The state dropped two places on the RDI to land at 21st. Minnesota also ranks 21st on the RCI in this edition of the STSI, a five-rank drop from 2016. Minnesota increased one rank on the HCI to fourth, while the state dropped to seventh from fourth on the TSW sub-index due to decreases in the concentration of computer, engineering, and science-related occupations. Minnesota dropped three ranks to 18th on the TCD.

The state has been focusing on creating a workforce to support the growing high-tech sector. The statewide College Occupational Scholarship Pilot Program for STEM-related degrees is one such program, and in conjunction, Minnesota has built eight IT Center of Excellence facilities to focus resources on education and internship programs. These eight centers provide a pathway for entering the high-tech workforce, with an emphasis on cybersecurity, expanding the high-tech workforce through diversity recruitment, and providing K-12 grades with a tech-related curriculum.

Minnesota is also making efforts to expand access to broadband internet. Currently, Minnesota has 69 percent of households with broadband internet, ranking 19th in the nation. One estimate puts a $1.4 billion price on the infrastructure needed to connect the remaining 31 percent of households in the state. If Minnesota can provide statewide high-speed internet access, this could generate long-term economic benefits by connecting its population to opportunity through modern infrastructure development. By providing the necessary education, workforce, and infrastructure as the knowledge economy develops, Minnesota should be competitive in the long run.

Overall Minnesota ranking by year:

  • #8 2018
  • #7 2016
  • #13 2014
  • #12 2012
  • #12 2010
  • #11 2008
  • #8 2004
  • #10 2002

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Minneapolis A Top 10 Rising City For Startups

Top 10

Oh, how I like lists… particularly when something I am fond of is on one. This one is from Forbes and Revolution. They list the Top 10 Rising Cities for Startups and Minneapolis – St. Paul is on it. Being a “homer” I think we are better than #9 but I’ll get over it. I have been saying for a long time that I do not think this region needs to be compared to Seattle, Bay Area, Boston or New York City. We do want and need to be at the top of the next list… the Tier II cities. And we need to stay at #1 or #2 in the Midwest with Chicago.

To get to the “rising cities” Forbes took out the top 10 cities that brought in the most VC funding the past three years: San Francisco, New York, Boston, San Jose, Los Angeles, San Diego, Seattle, Chicago, Washington, D.C. and Austin. They then took the next 30 largest cities and used 13 metrics: costs (business and living), education levels, college presence, entrepreneurship rates, working-age population growth and venture capital investments (density, total number, dollar value and growth).

That data gives the following ranking:

  • Columbus, Ohio

  • St. Louis

  • Atlanta

  • Denver

  • Baltimore

  • Cincinnati

  • Portland, Oregon

  • Philadelphia

  • Minneapolis-St. Paul

  • Charlotte, North Carolina

The data specific to Minneapolis-St. Paul

The annual Twin Cities Startup Week allows entrepreneurs to reach investors, customers and future employees. Innovation is strong on food and agriculture with food giants Cargill, General Mills, Hormel and Land O’Lakes all based in the area.

Our 3-year deal count is 4th highest on the list and of course I am happy to see a nod to Twin Cities Startup Week. I would like to see the cities ranked by each of the metrics… I’m nerdy when it comes to these things.

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Well Fargo And Regis Layoffs 2018

Job Cuts And Layoffs

Some bummer news last week as Wells Fargo and Regis Corp announced layoffs on the same day.

First the small one… the Regis Corp situation was reported by the Minneapolis StarTribune saying that 75 corporate workers have been impacted including 15 in IT. Regis has been restructuring a bit including a sale of some mall based salons. Click Regis cuts several dozen headquarters staff.

The big one… Wells Fargo (who used to be headquartered in Minneapolis with an ongoing significant presence of around 20,000 workers in Minnesota in banking, mortgage services and investing) announced a 10% reduction over the next three years. Wells Fargo has around 265,000 employees in total so 10% being 26,500… that’s A LOT of people. CNBC has Wells Fargo is going backward with thousands of job cuts as JP Morgan and other banks boom showing how what is going on at Wells Fargo, and why, is not going on at other banks.

The Portland Business Journal did a Q&A with Tim Sloan, CEO, EXCLUSIVE: Wells Fargo CEO talks cuts, calls reports of his pending departure 'just not true' on the day of the announcement and here is one item regarding the layoff:

“The bank this morning announced it would reduce headcount by 5-10 percent. Why?”

Given the transformation going on in the economy and going on in financial services — somewhat driven by technology — as we provide more technology to our consumers to help them self-service, we're going to need a few less people. Likewise as we've transformed the company we've centralized a fair number of activities. Whenever you do that you tend to have a bit of an overlap from a team member standpoint.

What I commented to the team is that, over the next three years, it's likely we'll have 5-10 percent less team members. It's not layoffs of 5-10 percent. It could be through attrition. Some of it will be displacement. I just wanted to make sure folks appreciated the likely scenario is we're going to have fewer people working at Wells Fargo even though we're going to continue to grow.

A couple of months ago the MSP Business Journal had Wells Fargo lays off 130 Twin Cities employees.

While the economy in general is doing well enough this is (and I say this all the time) another reminder that everyone needs to be managing their career, ongoing education and networking.

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Minnesota Recruiters In Demand–Summer 2018

Minnesota Recruiters in Demand

Two to three months ago while prepping for MSP On Deck Podcast, I mentioned to Kathy Grayson and Casey Allen that I was seeing a crazy high demand for Minnesota Recruiters. Over the past few episodes I have been talking about this and here is some of the data I have.

Some background… I started this site, blog in 2005 and the Minnesota Recruiters group in 2007. Back then I was getting a number of email like, “Who is a really good Tech Recruiter?” or “Who do you know can manage a team of Recruiters?”.

Then the “Great Recession” hit and the requests stopped.

As we came out of the recession I was starting to get a few inquiries again and created the page.

To my conversation with Kathy and Casey… Casey asked if I had been tracking the number of jobs posted at any one time on the site. I said no. Later I figured well, I do have the number of jobs posted in a month so l could work with that.

Above is a graph of the number of jobs I posted per month beginning in 2010. It’s a bit messy so here is the raw data:

Minnesota RecruiterAnd the raw data by year:

Minnesota Recruiter

Some things to know and then a few conclusions:

  • This is not a scientific set of data… but it does show some trends.

  • I post jobs that are sent to me or that companies have said that if I see them post something then I can add it too. It is not a data set of all the Recruiter jobs that are, have been available.

  • 90%+ of the jobs posted are corporate recruiter roles. Infrequently I get a consulting or search firm role to post.

  • Labor markets are lagging economic indicators

  • I’ve been doing this a long time and the Minnesota Recruiter community generally knows about this site so I don’t think there is any other “influence” that inflates the numbers other than demand.


  • Minnesota Recruiters are in demand for a few reasons:

    • The general positive state of the local and regional economy.

    • Minnesota Recruiters too, like many professions, are moving around looking for new opportunities.

    • Companies generally are feeling the stress of not being able to easily hire the staff they are looking for so need to add Recruiters to find them.

    • Companies generally are going to continue to expand and hire.

  • If I have been in a (non recruiter) role for a some time and been thinking about making a change… I would do it this year. I would start now so that by year end I am into something new.

  • The “Great Recession” ended around of June 2009 and it took a while for companies to really start to expand. They likely did it with whatever recruiting staff they had at the time. I didn’t expect to see the lag be that long.

  • This 2018 spike is noticeable and so is the streak since late 2016.

As I said above this is not a perfect set of data.

I am always looking for trends be they to predict the near future and/or to test what I think already is.

Any questions, thoughts or comments? Send me an email [email protected]

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Working Wednesday Vol IV: Dispatch, Bind Benefits, Sansoro Health, Arctic Wolf Hiring And Minnesota Jobs Report


2 days late but still going weekly…

Why didn’t I post anything Wednesday?

- Busy talking with about the roles at Daugherty Business Solutions.

- I didn’t have much hiring news (and y’all should be sending me notes about what your company is up to)

Note… I am not only wanting to post Minneapolis and St Paul tech jobs news. It’s the space I hang out most of the time. If you have tech or non tech news I gladly take it.

And then… WHACK

I was listening to our just published MSP On Deck podcast and remembered a couple of groups that recently announced funding rounds:

- Dispatch, last I heard is looking for 2 Sr Ruby Dev’s. Click and send your resume to [email protected] They are also looking for delivery drivers in Minneapolis, Chicago, Cincinnati, Dallas, Kansas City and Orlando.

- Bind Benefits has a bunch of jobs in tech, product, data science, medical and account managers. Click Bind Benefits Jobs

Some more news items:

-Kathy Grayson at the MSP Business Journal wrote Health-IT company Sansoro raises $8 million; steps up hiring. They have Product Manager, IT Manager and Customer Success Manager roles posted. Click Sansoro Health Jobs.

- Kathy has another story this one Silicon Valley startup Arctic Wolf adds another high-ranking exec to growing Twin Cities office. Click Arctic Wolf Jobs.

Minnesota Jobs News:

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Working Wednesday Vol III: Big Data Architect, Minnesota Tech And Recruiter Jobs, Hiring And Layoff News


I know… I’m a day late. Not for lack of interest on my part but a full calendar of recruiting.

Usually during the summer time there is a minor slow down in hiring. Summer hours and vacations can make it a little difficult to get phone calls, interviews and offers done as fast as usual. I’m not seeing much of a slow period. Many hiring managers and candidates are doing phone and video interviews while on their vacation.

Daugherty Business Solutions:

Today and tomorrow a few Developers and a couple of Recruiters are attending the Midwest JS conference at the University of St Thomas campus. A few days of seeing old friends, making new ones, learning and yes… some recruiting. If you are attending the conference stop by and say hello. I will be there for a short time Friday with Eric Kramlinger and Dave Frolick who will be there the whole conference.

Team Daugherty at Midwest JS

Big Data Architect was added this week to our Minneapolis recruiting board. We are looking for someone with expertise in the Hadoop ecosystem: Hive, HDFS, MapReduce, Yarn, Kafka, Pig, Oozie, HBase, Sqoop, and Spark and who have hands on experience with Hands-on experience with Scala, Python and R.

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Working Wednesday Vol II: Minnesota Recruiter, Digital And Marketing Jobs


Two weeks in a row… I’m on a roll Smile

Last week I focused on some companies I work with now and in the past… this week 2 job categories.

If your company is hiring send me some info, content and links and I’ll try to include it.

Recruiter Jobs:

Last week I posted about my current sourcing, recruiting and strategy project with the Daugherty Business Solutions Minneapolis team. One of our awesome recruiters has moved to the West Coast and we are looking to add a new recruiter to the team. I posted this Monday:

Minnesota Recruiter, Minneapolis Recruiter

I really do love working with this team and if you or someone you know is a really good recruiter, loves to build tech teams and wants to be part of a great group of recruiters send me a note. If you rather I not know you are looking send a message to Wes Strait, Operations Manager at [email protected]

I’m going to write more about in the next days… during July I posted 44 Minneapolis and St Paul recruiter jobs. By far the largest number for the month of July since I started posted in 2009. Also, so far this year I have posted 224 recruiter jobs with 178 in 2014 the previous high. And it was only July. So yes, most companies are feeling some stress when it comes to hiring. I have some interesting graphs I’ll be sharing.

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Survey: Minnesota #6 Top State for Business

CNBC America's Top States For Doing Business

CNBC released their America’s Top States For Doing Business and Minnesota comes in at #6.

Minnesota has done very well in recent years:

  • #3 2017

  • #4 2016

  • #1 2015

  • #15 2013

Here is how we did:

2018 – 2017 – 2016 – 2015 – 2014 – 2013 – Category

#3 – #3 – #2 – #3 – #4 – #3 Quality of Life

#5 – #5 – #9 – #6 – #11 – #18 Technology & Innovation

#5 – #2 – #2 – #2 – #12 – #23 Education

#6 – #10 – #5 – #9 – #5 – #8 Infrastructure

#16 – #16 – #15 – #13 – #30 – #32 Workforce

#17 – #16 – #21 – #23 – #11 – #17 Access to Capital

#18 – #6 – #17 – #5 – #5 – #10 Economy

#28 – #33 – #27 – #23 – #15 – #15 Business Friendliness

#29 – #31 – #27 – #32 – #28 – #34 Cost of Living

#38 – #36 – #35 – #35 – #38 – #39 Cost of Doing Business

I’m curious about the economy category and why we seem to be bouncing up and down. That seems odd to me.

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Minnesota Morning | Ageism In Tech, Minnesota Has More Jobs Than Unemployed Workers And Make It MSP Recap

CoCo Minneapolis, Coworking
I am back spending more time at CoCo in the Minneapolis Grain Exchange. With the expansion there are more places to work, engage, be social and hide out. I still find my best place to work is “the balcony”. It’s a sweet view, quiet and I still feel like I am near the action without being in it.

And… I will be spending more time in the building. Look for an announcement in the next day or two.

Squirrel moment: Monday I posted 6 new including experience for The Wildflower Foundation.

Ageism In tech

A little more than a year ago I wrote this post, and was not surprised at the number of private messages and email I received from tech pros with a similar story.

Indeed came out with this Report: Ageism in the Tech Industry:

Our survey of tech workers found that close to half of respondents (43%) worry about losing their job because of their age. Even more troubling, nearly one 5th (18%) say they worry about it “all the time.”

That’s a lot of people #ObviousThingToSay

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Minnesota IT Jobs, Salary and Recruiting Report Summer 2015

The most frequently asked questions I receive are some variations of:

What’s going on with Minnesota IT Jobs?

What’s the going salary/rate for a…

“War for Talent” real or not?

How in demand are my skills?

Why can’t we find who we are looking for?

To give some clarity about “what’s going in Minnesota” around this time of year (after all the spring events and conferences) I put together a summary of all of the info I have gathered over the past months, add in a bunch of reference points from national IT job and salary surveys and put it online.

The 2015 version below is 32 minutes in length with 95 slides…. it moves pretty quick:

  • Intro
  • What’s going on in MN
  • Recruiting & Retention
  • Job and Skills in demand
  • Salary info
  • Conclusion

If you are a startup CEO, in HR or a corporate recruiter, tech manager or CIO, coordinate a tech group or are an IT professional (did I leave anyone out?) and have questions, thoughts or comments, or want a copy of the slide deck send me an email:

[email protected]



What did I miss?

I am going to do a series of blog posts expanding on some of the topics covered and can easily add in something you may be curious about.


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Largest Downtown Minneapolis Employers 2015

Minneapolis Downtown Council

Interesting stat from the Minneapolis Downtown Council 2015 annual meeting… the 15 largest employers in Downtown Minneapolis employ 50,583 people. That’s down 1.1% from a year ago.

It needs to be noted that Target is down 20% from last year:

- A large number are now working at the Brooklyn Park campus

- Layoffs and likely this number will drop again this year in part to the Target Canada layoffs

The list with +/- 2014:

  1. Target Corp. 10,000 employees | -20.5%
  2. Wells Fargo & Co., 7,000 | no change

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