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There’s a lot of reasons why Charleston is the number one city in the country. From its horse drawn carriages to its iconic rainbow-colored houses, Charleston is a special place. With the beaches only a 15 minute drive from downtown, Charleston’s southern charm has helped the city become the number one mid-sized U.S metro area for IT job growth.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Charleston has added 4,000 jobs in the past 5 years. The Holy City is home to more than 250 tech companies employing 11,000 people. These skyrocketing numbers have given Charleston the nickname “Silicon Harbor.”
Tech jobs comprise about 3% of jobs in the region, and account for 5% of the area’s payroll of $14 billion just last year. The tech market is hot business right now with about 4% of the U.S. workforce employed in the industry, which is about 8% of the national economy. Last year, the industry expanded to 7.3 million workers in jobs for software, cybersecurity, and cloud computing according to the technology association CompTIA.
Charleston’s unique waterfront city blended with affordability, a modern laid-back lifestyle, and a booming tech industry are hard to compete against when deciding on a city to work and live in. Charleston’s competition includes Austin, Scottsdale, Arizona, and San Francisco. PeopleMatter renovated a 123-year-old structure that was once a clothing store and then a bakery. The crumbling building is now a state-of-the-art headquarters that opened in 2013 and is home to 120 employees. Another software firm, BoomTown is on the rise with more start-ups popping up on the upper peninsula.
Charleston is building a tech community that has seen extensive growth in the past several years. More and more buildings are taking form with more and more employees pouring in. In a very competitive marketplace, all of the wonders that Charleston has to offer has allowed the city to pull ahead in the tech community.