Tech businesses in the Eugene-Springfield, Ore., area are having trouble finding the professionals they need to expand. They’re looking for a range of skills including Web development, DevOps, Java development and UI design. The companies vary in size from Symantec, with 1,400 employees and 90 openings at its facility in Springfield, to smaller businesses including Web and mobile developer Concentric Sky, real estate tech firm IDX and small business product developer Palo Alto Software.
“When I think of the tech companies here in town that I’m familiar with … almost all of them are hiring,” Cale Bruckner, Vice President of Concentric Sky, told the Eugene Register-Guard.
Some 400 tech companies make their home in Lane County, says the Register-Guard, employing more than 4,000 people. Data from the state of Oregon says those companies hired at least several hundred workers between 2012 and 2013, and more hiring is expected. Average tech salaries there were $63,495 in 2012, the state says. That compares to an overall wage of $37,617. In Portland, about 100 miles north, the average salary for technology workers was $84,295 in 2013, according to the Dice Salary Survey.
The lack of potential candidates is the tech industry’s “biggest brake,” says the Register-Guard. That’s spawned a number of efforts to get the word out about Lane County as a great place to work. They include the local tech industry group Silicon Shire, which has created an “Ambassador’s” program designed to evangelize the region both beyond its borders and among local college graduates.
“There are so many companies here that are under the radar because their target audience isn’t in their backyard,” said Jake Weatherly, who runs the local startup SheerID. “So they have offices in kind of weird locations without big signs, and they have high-octane teams reaching out to the world from Eugene, Oregon.”
Image: Wikimedia Commons