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U.S. High-Tech Industry Adds Jobs for Third Year in a Row


AeA, the nation's largest high-tech trade association, released its 11th annual Cyberstates report on April 2 detailing national and state trends in high-tech employment, wages, and other key economic factors for all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. The report - Cyberstates 2008: A Complete State-by-State Overview of the High-Technology Industry - shows that in 2007, the high-tech industry continued growing, adding 91,400 net jobs for a total of 5.9 million in the United States. This is on top of job gains of 139,000 in 2006 and 87,400 in 2005.

Software services added 82,600 jobs in 2007, up for the fourth year in a row. Engineering and tech services added 45,800 jobs in 2007, also up for the fourth year in a row, putting it at an all time high. On the downside, high-tech manufacturing lost 29,800 net jobs in 2007. Seven of the nine tech manufacturing sectors lost jobs in 2007. Only the defense electronics and electromedical equipment sectors added jobs. The communications services sector continued to shed jobs in 2007, albeit at a slower pace, losing 7,200 compared to a loss of 16,900 in 2006.

On a state-by-state basis, Cyberstates 2008 shows that 48 cyberstates added jobs in 2006, the most recent data available. California led the nation, adding 21,400 net jobs. The next largest net gains in tech employment between 2005 and 2006 occurred in Texas (+13,700) and Virginia (+ 9,800). Rounding out the top five were New Jersey (+8,500) and New Mexico (+6,700).

For the second straight year, Virginia led the nation in concentration of high-tech workers in 2006, with 91 high-tech workers per 1,000 private sector workers. Until 2005, Colorado had owned this distinction since 1998. Massachusetts ranked second in 2006, with 87 high-tech workers per 1,000 private sector workers. Colorado was third, with 83 tech workers per 1,000 private sector workers.