The COVID-19 pandemic has upended nearly every industry in 2020, reshaping the workforce and impacting millions of jobs. If you work in technology or are interested in transitioning into the field, it’s important to consider where companies are hiring right now. The technology sector’s recovery has fared worse than other industries in recent months, and competition for jobs has increased rapidly as a result.
So where are today’s tech job opportunities? In this article, we examine the leading metros for tech job postings in 2020, including how job seeker interest compares to employer demand and the top tech job postings in each region. We also list the tech industry’s most in-demand skills for prospective employees.
Read more: Best Cities for Jobs Around the Country
Metros with the highest share of tech job postings
Perhaps now more than ever, location is important when looking for a job in the tech sector: Some cities have a higher concentration of jobs available than others, career growth opportunities can differ from city to city, some companies are focusing their hiring in certain metropolitan areas across the U.S., and personal factors like housing costs and entertainment options can vary greatly in each of these geographic areas.
Below are today’s top 10 metropolitan areas for tech job postings, as well as the most in-demand tech jobs in each region:
1. Washington D.C. metropolitan area
America's capital city is a political hub, but technology also plays a major role in employment opportunities here. The Washington D.C. metropolitan area includes parts of Virginia, Maryland and West Virginia. Since 2019, this metro has seen a 1.84% increase in tech jobs. It has also seen the largest increase in job seeker interest, jumping up 15.59% from 2019. This may be a reflection of Amazon selecting Crystal City (a neighborhood in Arlington, Virginia) for its next headquarters, leaving many wondering if other tech industry opportunities will follow suit.
Five in-demand tech jobs in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area:
2. New York metropolitan area
The metropolitan area surrounding New York City is the most populous in the U.S. and includes north and central New Jersey, western Connecticut and northeastern Pennsylvania in addition to the state of New York. Interestingly, it had the largest drop in interest for tech jobs compared to the other metropolitan areas on our list, with a drop of 9.06% in job seeker interest since 2019.
With the pandemic forcing businesses to shift to remote work and hindering many of the advantages of city life, tech job seekers may have shifted their interest this year to other areas with a lower cost of living.
Five in-demand tech jobs in the New York metropolitan area:
Read more: Your Guide To Relocating for a Job
3. Seattle metropolitan area
With an estimated population just shy of 4 million, the Seattle metropolitan area encompasses Tacoma and Bellevue, Washington, and is home to more than half of the state’s population. Amazon makes up the bulk of tech opportunities in the area, but companies like Zulily, Redfin and Tableau also have headquarters in the Seattle area. Job seeker interest in Seattle-area tech jobs has increased by 6.9% since 2019.
Five in-demand tech jobs in the Seattle metropolitan area:
4. San Francisco metropolitan area
The growth of the tech industry in the Bay Area is soaring compared to its Silicon Valley neighbor, even though San Francisco remains half its size in available jobs. Job seeker interest in San Francisco-area tech jobs also increased by 6.73% since 2019 despite the coronavirus-forced shift to remote work in places far away from the hyper-expensive Bay Area.
Five in-demand tech jobs in the San Francisco metropolitan area:
5. Los Angeles metropolitan area
As more innovative tech companies began to put down roots outside of the tech epicenter of Silicon Valley, the sandy shores of Los Angeles, Long Beach and Anaheim gained a new nickname: “Silicon Beach.” Despite housing more than 500 technology companies and startups, tech job seekers' interest in the Los Angeles area decreased by 4.32% since 2019.
Five in-demand tech jobs in the Los Angeles metropolitan area:
6. San Jose / Sunnyvale / Santa Clara metropolitan area
In Silicon Valley—a region in the southern part of the San Francisco Bay Area that includes San Jose, Sunnyvale and Santa Clara—the share of tech jobs has been dropping steadily over the past two years as companies began migrating some of their workforces to regions with a lower cost of living. Interest in tech jobs in the region had also slowly been declining until this year, when Indeed saw a 19.53% increase in the share of clicks in tech job postings in the region. The increase now in interest is likely due to pandemic-induced layoffs in the metro earlier this year, which has led to more people looking for jobs nationwide than ever before.
If you are currently looking for a tech job in Silicon Valley, employers with the highest share of job postings for tech roles are Amazon, Intuit, Apple, Facebook, Pinterest, Genentech, Cisco, Wells Fargo, Oracle and Splunk.
Five in-demand tech jobs in the San Jose / Sunnyvale / Santa Clara metropolitan area:
Read more: The 18 Best Cities for Remote Workers
7. Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex
The North Texas metroplex of Dallas, Fort Worth and Arlington is a home base for tech giants like AT&T, Texas Instruments, Cisco and Oracle, and the Lone Star State continues to attract interest from leading coastal companies for its lower cost of living and tax incentives. Since 2019, this metro has seen a .92% increase in the share of tech job postings. Job seeker interest remained relatively the same, decreasing by only 0.39% since 2019.
Five in-demand tech jobs in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex:
8. Greater Boston metropolitan area
The technology sector is a driving force behind the economy in the Boston metro area—which stretches from Providence, Rhode Island, to Manchester, New Hampshire. However, with layoffs and furloughs at several promising tech companies at the onset of the pandemic in the spring, interest in Boston-area tech jobs decreased by 1.75% since 2019.
Five in-demand tech jobs in the greater Boston metropolitan area:
9. Chicago metropolitan area
Chicagoland—the metropolitan area of Chicago and its Illinois suburbs like Naperville and Elgin, plus surrounding counties in Indiana and Wisconsin—is home to one of the world's most diversified economies: While it makes our list of leading metros for tech jobs, the industry only accounts for 4.66% of jobs in the region. Tech job seeker interest in the area also decreased by 4.79% since 2019, signaling that the Chicago tech industry may continue to shrink in the future.
Five in-demand tech jobs in the Chicago metropolitan area:
10. Central Maryland
The Baltimore–Columbia–Towson metropolitan area is one of the nation’s leading regions for innovative research and biotechnology. IT management and system development are also growing in Central Maryland. Since 2019, this metro has seen a 6.91% increase in the share of tech job postings.
Five in-demand tech jobs in Central Maryland:
Methodology: Indeed calculated which metros had the largest share of tech postings in the U.S. from January 2020 through October 2020 and then determined the top five tech job titles in the area by calculating the titles that had the highest share of job postings in the metro.
Top skills for rising tech jobs in 2020
In addition to soft skills like communication and analysis, several hard skills are often requested by employers for tech jobs like software engineers and developers. Here are the top 10 most-requested skills for tech jobs in 2020:
A computer programming code essential to the creation of web pages and the development of smartphone applications.
A beginner-friendly computer programming language that is general-purpose, object-oriented and class-based. Its code can be used on a variety of computer and software platforms without making source code modifications.
Structured Query Language is a database language used as a communication tool to create and access databases. SQL supports software applications by performing tasks such as retrieving, updating, inserting and deleting data. SQL makes it possible to execute queries, insert and update records, create and delete databases and tables, and more.
Amazon Web Services a development platform that makes it easier for businesses to build web-based applications and services. Using AWS allows enterprises to develop secure cloud services with features like database, content delivery and different levels of computational power.
A programming language used to include dynamic features on a web browser.
An API, or "Application Programming Interface," is software that allows two applications to communicate with each other.
This UNIX-based operating system boots from a Linux kernel. It’s a common computing platform for enterprise businesses because of its wide use.
C is a general-purpose programming language that can be valuable to learn because it contains other languages within it: C++ and C#.
Agile project management methodology, or APM, allows a team to manage a project by breaking down large projects into smaller and easily manageable tasks, which are completed in short iterations that prioritize feedback-driven changes.
10. Machine learning
Machine learning is a subset of artificial intelligence where the program can update its own code to respond to data sets being fed into it.