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Spotlight: Why Austin has become a thriving technology hub

Those who follow tech news will know that the Silicon Valley exodus is nothing new. 

Traditional technology hubs in the US are changing, companies have been setting up away from the Bay Area for some years now & they’re taking the best talent along with them.

With all the changes to the workplace that have occurred over the past 18 months or so, and with top technology talent now free to work where they like, Austin is reaping the rewards as businesses seek more affordable spots.

You only have to look at some of the tech giants which call, or have plans to call, Austin their home. Oracle announced in December 2020 it planned to move its headquarters to Austin, while Palantir and SpaceX are among the other world-renowned businesses attracted by what Austin has to offer.

Calling Austin home isn’t a new phenomenon for tech companies, with the likes of Apple, Facebook and Google already home to thousands of tech workers in the city before the so-called ‘exodus’.

More recently, Austin, or the Silicon Hills as it’s become known, is building on its impressive history in tech and is transforming itself into a breeding ground for start-ups, innovation, investment, and talent in recent years having built on the city’s already impressive history. 

A quick look at the numbers and you’ll find more than 5,550 start-ups and tech companies in the city and in 2020, VCs invested around $2.26 billion into start-up companies.

So, why is Austin such an attractive proposition for tech companies? What’s in Austin for them?

Here are 4 reasons why Austin has become a thriving technology hub…

  • Thriving business ecosystem & culture

A recent survey conducted by Blind found that 92% of tech workers in Austin believed the city fosters an environment that enables tech companies and workers to really thrive.

Texas is one of seven US states with no corporate income tax, meaning increased capital for businesses and individuals, higher profits for businesses and lower operating costs. This in turn makes companies in the state an attractive option of investment and expansion opportunities.

  • No shortage of educated professionals

As the state capital, Austin benefits from one of the country’s most well-educated workforces and there’s a competitive environment due to the number of start-ups across the city.

The city has fast become a melting pot of diverse skillsets as a result of these opportunities, and this has driven up salaries consistently over the past few years. 

Austin leads its counterparts in terms of growth, reporting a 10% increase on average last year and as such, the city continues to attract highly educated and well remunerated professionals from across the US.

  • Relatively low cost of living

Despite an influx of tech companies and their employees driving up rent and house prices due to increased demand, housing is still relatively cheap in comparison to many other US tech hubs.

More millennials are seeking a move to Austin with the realisation they stand a better chance of owning affordable accommodation, although the median cost of a home in the city has increased nearly 25% this year alone.

Still, with average rent for a 1-bedroom apartment at $1,329 and the median home price at around $372,000, the city is a far more affordable option for most tech workers.

  • Inclusive, eclectic population

Austin has a vibrant culture and is a great place to live. Add to that it’s thriving LGTBQ+ scene, support for equality, openness, and safety, and it’s an ideal destination for tech talent from all backgrounds.

In fact, Austin is often listed as one of the LGBTQ+ friendly cities in the US and many Austin-based tech companies are working hard to ensure their internal policies around diversity, equity and inclusion reflect the communities around them.

These are just a few reasons why Austin is a great place to be for tech companies and tech workers. 

Based in Austin? You can search our latest jobs in the US here or speak to one of the team about how we’re helping Austin-based companies find top talent for their teams.

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