YoY change: 7.2 percent
Despite the recent government shutdown, the federal government remains an enticing place to work for many tech professionals who are interested in public service. In addition, government jobs tend to provide a consistency you simply can’t find in the startup world, and federal agencies need tech pros of pretty much every stripe, from network engineers to Web developers.
Washington, DC is also home to a number of tech companies, including federal contractors. No wonder average salaries have increased 7.2 percent over the past year.
YoY change: 4.4%
Virginia participates in the same tech ecosystem as Washington, DC, and benefits from the same combination of government spending and contracting. In addition, Northern Virginia is host to major firms such as Microsoft and Amazon, which have a substantial datacenter presence in the state. Over the next few years, as Amazon scales up its proposed “HQ2” headquarters in Crystal City (right across the river from DC), expect demand for certain kinds of highly specialized tech pros to only increase.
The Seattle area has a very mature tech scene, thanks to Amazon and Microsoft. It also hosts major satellite branches of major tech firms such as Facebook (Oculus, the company’s VR subsidiary, has an office there). While that growth has led to some local issues (for example, there’s much hand-wringing over Amazon’s impact on homelessness and affordable housing in downtown Seattle), it’s made the city attractive for tech pros with the right combinations of skills (as well as companies that want to hire them).
YoY change: 2.9%
New Jersey benefits heavily from New York City’s tech ecosystem; for tech pros who don’t want to spend a fortune on an apartment in Manhattan or Brooklyn, there are always towns in Jersey where you can secure a house with an actual yard.