The San Francisco Bay Area in California has been known as the epicenter of the technology industry since 1938 when two gentlemen, David Packard and Bill Hewlett, created Hewlett-Packard in a Palo-Alto garage. The name, Silicon Valley, was popularized in the late 1970s and is representative of the technology companies, both large and small, headquartered there. While it has been a major technology hub for decades, high housing costs, tax rates, and strict regulations are prompting major companies to relocate their headquarters to states which have lower housing costs and favorable tax laws, such as Texas.
Who Is Leaving?
One of the first companies to announce they were moving headquarters to Texas was, ironically, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, a company created in 2015 when Hewlett-Packard split. Elon Musk also recently announced he was moving Tesla headquarters to Texas, and software vendor Oracle is headed to Texas next. Other companies of note include 8VC, FileTrail, DZS Inc, and QuestionPro. CEOs Drew Houston of Dropbox and Douglas Merritt of Splunk are also leaving Silicon Valley in favor of Texas.
A major reason many companies are choosing to leave Silicon Valley is the exorbitantly high cost of living. However, Texas offers a much lower cost of living. Austin, the city most of these companies are flocking to, has a cost of living that is 98 percent lower than the cost of living in San Francisco. In addition, when adjusted for the cost of living in San Francisco, salaries in Austin are actually higher than SF. Texas also does not have a state income tax, unlike California, and has robust, affordable, housing options. They also have more tax incentives and less prohibitive tax laws than California.
Additionally, due in large part to the COVID-19 pandemic, remote working has allowed businesses more flexibility with their workforce, allowing moves such as these to occur without the concern of moving all their employees. This is not to say these businesses will not be looking for and hiring local talent. With one of the biggest tech industry leaders, Dell, already being located in Austin, there is already a presence of highly educated individuals, with 25 colleges and universities in the area, and it is already seen as a US tech hub. Add the music, art, and food scene, as well as Austin’s famous “Keep Austin Weird” slogan, the city provides an attractive location for employers and employees alike.
Learn More About Texas as the New Technology Hub
Technology is always an in-demand career choice, with the US Bureau of Labor Statistics predicting an 11 percent growth between 2019-2029, which is faster than the average for all other occupations. With these major tech companies relocating, there will be lots of opportunities for technology jobs in Texas, and there will be a particular increase in tech jobs in Austin.
Technology training programs like software development, cybersecurity, and data science are powered by WOZ U and offered by accredited institutions like Southern Careers Institute. There are multiple training programs and opportunities available to jump-start a career in tech, whether it is your first field of study, or you’re looking for a change.