The Top States For IT Jobs And The Most In-Demand Tech Skills

The COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic and the subsequent work-from-home movement are causing major shifts in not only how IT personnel work, but how—and where—they were hired in the second quarter of 2020, according to a new survey from Dice.

Tech Job Openings Amid The Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a huge impact on the economy. However, that impact has been uneven. While business in certain industries such as hospitality essentially dried up almost overnight and has yet to recover six months later, other companies, particularly in the tech space, learned to adapt with a move to get employees to work from home.

These changes have had major impacts on tech job openings, where businesses initially scaled back hiring due to uncertainty but have since moved to increase hiring to meet the new needs of customers.

Dice, a Centennial, Colo.-based tech career and recruiting site, used data from the database of Boston-based analytics software company Burning Glass Technologies to analyze over 6 million tech job postings in the U.S. during the second quarter of 2020. This gave Dice a picture of the biggest tech job opportunities in the country, where those opportunities are, and the kind of tech skills employers are looking for to fill those postings. The findings provide insight into how tech job openings are changing at this very unusual time in history.

Here’s what the survey found about tech jobs.

Top States For Tech Job Openings, Second-Quarter 2020 Versus Second-Quarter 2019

The Top 10 states in terms of tech job openings in the second quarter of 2020, according to Dice, include the usual suspects:

1. California

2. Texas

3. Virginia

4. New York

5. North Carolina

6. Florida

7. Illinois

8. Maryland

9. Massachusetts

10. Colorado

However, when it comes to which states saw the fastest growth in tech job openings, the list is quite different:

1. (tie) Maryland and Idaho (+23%)

3. Rhode Island (+22%)

4. New Jersey (+14%)

5. Virginia (+11%)

6. Arizona (+5%)

7. Utah (+4%)

8. Connecticut (+3%)

9. North Carolina (+2%)

10. (tie) Louisiana and South Dakota (+1%)

The states with the lowest growth in tech job openings for the quarter were:

1. Alabama (-38%)

2. Ohio (-37%)

3. Iowa (-36%)

4. (tie) Florida and Georgia (-35%)

6. New York (-34%)

7. Vermont (-33%)

8. Maine (-31%)

9. (tie) Nebraska and California (-28%)

Key Takeaways Regarding Tech Job Postings By State

• While California‘s second-quarter tech job postings fell 28 percent compared with the previous year, the state still had over 140,000 job postings during the quarter, which is twice as much as any other state.

• Federal government IT requirements were important. Maryland and Virginia saw strength in tech job postings during the quarter because of their proximity to the federal government.

• For Virginia, tech job postings also benefited from Amazon’s decision to build its HQ2 in the state.

• While New York is also getting an Amazon HQ2, tech job postings there suffered because of its early status as a COVID-19 pandemic hotspot and the state‘s decision to reopen slowly after a large part of the economy was shut down.

Top States For Tech Job Growth, May To June 2020

After the initial shock of the COVID-19 pandemic, half the states in the U.S. showed double-digit growth in tech job openings between May and June, Dice found.

The top 10 states did very well in terms of recovery:

1. (tie) Michigan and Tennessee (+36%)

3. (tie) Georgia and Wisconsin (+34%)

5. Colorado (+32%)

6. Massachusetts (+29%)

7. Pennsylvania (+28%)

8. Ohio (+27%)

9. Illinois (+26%)

10. Arizona (+25%)

Dice said it expects to see higher growth in smaller metropolitan areas than in certain larger cities as the work-from-home movement takes hold and employees consider moving to lower-cost areas. This trend is consistent with the findings of a Gartner survey on permanent work-from-home trends published this spring.

Top Cities For Tech Job Openings, Second-Quarter 2020 Versus Second-Quarter 2019

The top 10 cities in terms of total tech job postings include:

1. New York

2. San Francisco

3. Austin, Texas

4. Atlanta

5. Chicago

6. Charlotte, N.C.

7. Los Angeles

8. San Diego

9. Seattle

10. Boston

The Top 11 U.S. cities in terms of growth in tech job openings in the second quarter of 2020, according to Dice, seem to have a heavy concentration on the East Coast thanks in large part to the large number of government contractors in addition to the Amazon HQ2 location:

1. Durham, N.C. (+47%)

2. Richmond, Va. (+33%)

3. Madison, Wis. (+30%)

4. (tie) Arlington, Va., and Herndon, Va. (+28%)

6. (tie) McLean, Va., and Jersey City, N.J. (+19%)

8. Chantilly, Va. (+18%)

9. (tie) Austin, Texas; Baltimore, Md.; and Irving, Texas (+16%)

However, when it comes to which cities saw the fastest growth in tech job openings, the list seems concentrated in Florida and California, with New York City thrown in. But as noted above, many of these cities are established tech hubs which, while declining in number of postings year over year, still had more postings than most other cities:

1. (tie) Sunnyvale, Calif., and Miami (-39%)

3. Columbus, Ohio (-37%)

4. (tie) Cincinnati and Huntsville, Ala. (-36%)

6. Orlando, Fla. (-34%)

7. (tie) New York and San Francisco (-32%)

9. (tie) Santa Clara, Calif., and Jacksonville, Fla. (-31%)

Top Cities For Tech Job Growth, May To June 2020

As the country moved past the initial job shock caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, 25 major U.S. metropolitan areas showed double-digit growth in terms of tech job postings between May and June, according to Dice.

The top 11 cities that did particularly well in terms of tech job posting recovery include:

1. Pittsburgh, Pa. (+44%)

2. San Francisco (+42%)

3. Boston (+39%)

4. (tie) Denver and Atlanta (+36%)

6. Philadelphia (+35%)

7. Baltimore, Md. (+34%)

8. Chicago (+29%)

9. Phoenix (+27%)

10. (tie) New York and Charlotte, N.C. (+26%)

Top 10 Tech Employers In The Second Quarter

While the second quarter of 2020 started during the initial throes of the COVID-19 pandemic and its subsequent economic fallout, including business furloughs and closures, by the end of the quarter many businesses were showing strong tech hiring trends.

According to Dice, these are the top 10 tech employers during the second quarter of 2020:

1. Amazon

2. Northrop Grumman

3. Raytheon

4. General Dynamics

5. Ramy Infotech

6. Charles Schwab

7. Infosys

8. Leidos

9. Lockheed Martin

10. Dell Technologies

Top 20 Skills Required In Amazon Job Postings

As shown in the previous slide, Amazon was the top company in terms of second- quarter 2020 tech job openings. According to Dice, these are the top 20 skills required for job postings at Amazon:

1. Java

2. Python

3. C++

4. Project management

5. SQL

6. Linux

7. Microsoft C#

8. Cloud computing

9. Product management

10. Ruby

11. Machine learning

12. Program management

13. JavaScript

14. Big data

15. DevOps

16. AWS Redshift

17. PERL scripting language

18. AWS EC2 (Elastic Compute Cloud)

19. Data science

20. NoSQL

Top Tech Job Postings During The Second Quarter Of 2020

According to Dice, these are the most commonly posted job openings in the quarter based on number of postings:

1. Software developer

2. Network engineer

3. Systems engineer

4. Senior software developer

5. Java developer

6. Business analyst

7. Software QA engineer

8. Application developer

9. IT project manager

10. Program manager

However, of the top 10 occupations, only one, Java developer, was in the list of fastest- growing occupations during the quarter compared with the second quarter of 2019. The top 10 fastest-growing tech occupations, according to Dice:

1. (tie) Back-end developer and cybersecurity consultant (+15%)

3. Java developer (+14%)

4. Salesforce developer (+10%)

5. Python developer (+8%)

6.(tie) Computer programmer and cybersecurity manager (+7%)

8.(tie) DevOps engineer, data engineer and Unix administrator (+3%)

Out of the top 50 top tech job occupations based on job postings in the second quarter, Dice identified these 10 as the occupations seeing the greatest decline in numbers over last year:

1. Business intelligence analyst (-40)

2. Graphic designer (-35%)

3. Product manager (-31%)

4. Senior business analyst (-30%)

5. (tie) Technical consultant and senior project manager (-27)

7. Computer support specialist (-26%)

8. (tie) Technical support engineer, data warehouse developer, and software QA analyst (-23%)