Wanderlust in the workforce

Austin punches in as one of top targets for U.S. job seekers

Austin punches in as one of top targets for U.S. job seekers

Austin skyline with Capitol building
Workers continue to move into Austin at warp speed. Photo by RoschetzkyIstockPhoto/iStock

If there are a lot of newbies who hail from Houston or New York City roaming around your workplace, we’ve got a likely explanation: Austin punches in as one of the top geographic targets for job hunters in the U.S., according to a new study.

Career website Glassdoor put Austin at No. 10 on its new list of the top metro areas where applicants from other cities are interested in moving for jobs. Appearing at No. 9, Dallas-Fort Worth was the only other Texas metro that made Glassdoor’s top 10.

Among job seekers hoping to hop from one metro to another, Austin snaggled 2.3 percent of all job applications, with DFW at 2.8 percent. In the top position was San Francisco, followed by New York City; San Jose, California; Los Angeles; Washington, D.C.; Boston; Chicago; and Seattle.

“Geography and economic factors are two factors at play when it comes to where people are drawn to move," Glassdoor career expert Alison Sullivan says. "We found job seekers are drawn to cities like Dallas-Fort Worth and Austin, two rapidly growing Texas cities with a lot of job opportunities that attract ambitious talent.” 

The Glassdoor study is based on a sample of more than 668,000 online job applications started on Glassdoor during a one-week period in January 2018 for the 40 largest metro areas in the U.S.

The study seems to indicate that both Austin and DFW are doing a fair amount of resident swapping with other major metro areas.

For Austin, the No. 1 supplier of job applicants was DFW, followed by Houston, San Antonio, New York City, and Los Angeles, according to Glassdoor. Dallas-Fort Worth attracts the most job applicants from Houston, followed by New York City, Austin, Chicago, and Los Angeles. 

“What we found is that these cities are often magnets drawing in job seekers from nearby cities,” Sullivan says. “For instance, job seekers interested in moving to Austin included those from nearby San Antonio, as well as Dallas-Fort Worth and Houston. Dallas-Fort Worth saw a similar pattern among those wanting to move there.”

Glassdoor was even able to pinpoint the Austin employers drawing the most applicants. In the Capital City, the top five most popular employers for job seekers were IBM, Dell, the University of Texas, PayPal, and Silicon Laboratories.

“Picking up your life and moving for a job is a major decision. But in a job market where workers are in high demand and many employers are eager to hire, the employers who understand where talent is heading and what influences them to consider a move will have a recruiting advantage,” Andrew Chamberlain, Glassdoor’s chief economist, says in a release.

“Our research shows that employers should think broader when it comes to their recruiting strategies,” he adds, “as the quality talent they want may not only be found in their local market, but across the country.”