Workin’ it

Austin clocks in among best U.S. cities for job seekers

Austin clocks in among best U.S. cities for job seekers

WeWork University Park
Austin: another day, another list.  Photo courtesy of WeWork

In real estate circles, it’s all about “location, location, location.” The same could be said for landing a job. And a new study ranks Austin among the best locations in the U.S. to hunt for work.

The study, conducted by personal finance website WalletHub, places Austin among the top 20 cities in the country. To determine the strongest local job markets in the U.S., WalletHub compared more than 180 cities across 30 key metrics, including availability of jobs, employment growth, and monthly average starting salary.

The data for each city in the study falls into two buckets: job market and socioeconomics. Austin, a perennial favorite on lists of the best places for jobs, appears at No. 16 in the WalletHub ranking. The Capital City comes in at No. 17 for its job market and No. 27 for its socioeconomics.

Some employers in the Austin area complain about a lack of talent to fill jobs, particularly in the tech industry, although career website LinkedIn says Austin ranks first among the U.S. cities attracting the most workers. Apple’s construction of a $1 billion campus in Austin with up to 15,000 employees (on top of the more than 6,000 it already has in Austin) promises to add to the region’s labor crunch.

Of course, WalletHub’s No. 16 ranking for Austin comes on top of a slew of other accolades. For instance, Inc. magazine recently named it the best place in the U.S. to start a business, and Money magazine declared it the best big city to live in.

Austin, however, did not claim the top spot in Texas. Plano — a regular presence on lists of the best places to live in the U.S. — earns a No. 5 ranking for its job market but a No. 55 ranking for its socioeconomics. WalletHub places Plano at No. 7 among the best cities for finding a job; Scottsdale, Arizona, grabs the top spot. 

A major reason for Plano’s attractiveness to job seekers stems from the sheer number of major corporate employers located there. They include JCPenney, Dr Pepper Snapple Group, Rent-A-Center, Alliance Data Systems, Cinemark, Frito-Lay, Toyota Motor North America, Capital One Finance, and FedEx Office.

One interesting tidbit about Plano from the WalletHub study: Among the 180-plus cities that were examined, it has the fewest part-time employees per 100 full-time employees (32.86).

Here are the WalletHub job rankings for other key cities in Texas:

  • Irving, No. 21
  • Dallas, No. 26
  • Grand Prairie, No. 36
  • Garland, No. 46
  • Arlington, No. 57
  • Fort Worth, No. 58
  • Houston, No. 82
  • San Antonio, No. 86