Forbes: Information Jobs on the Rise in New Orleans

In a recent article, Forbes Magazine took a close look at which US cities accounted for recent job gains in the areas of software, information services, and data processing. And in what may surprise some people, the New Orleans-Metairie-Kenner metro area earned third place on this prestigious list!

Background:

The decade of the 2,000s was not kind to the information job sector all across America. This sector includes jobs in these industries:

  • Publishing
  • Entertainment
  • Data Processing
  • Software

In total, these areas lost about 850,000 jobs since 2001, with most of these losses coming in telecommunications. Print publishing also lost big, about 40% of its job base. The good news is that the increased use of data in businesses combined with social media is helping to turn this sector into an area of growth once more.

Been There, Done That

In their survey, Forbes looked at 317 metropolitan areas across the US and their information sector job performance from 2001 to 2013. They looked at large metro areas, medium sized and smaller areas, and found what most expected but also found some surprises that point out the changes in the market. You would expect strong information performers from the past to regain some of their jobs, and they did. Two robust larger metro areas did well in bringing back information jobs – these are San Francisco and the Silicon Valley. These areas have been formidable in information for many years and their comeback is no surprise.

Smaller Markets Coming on Strong

Some of the medium sized metro areas are producing surprising results in building new information sector jobs. Perhaps, the most surprising newcomer on the list is New Orleans, Louisiana. While New Orleans has always been known for culture/tourism and in recent years developed a great reputation in the film industry, the casual observer may not associate the Crescent City with either high tech or information based jobs. Yet despite this misconception, New Orleans has produced 28% more information center jobs since 2009. General Electric, for example, is moving 300 new technology jobs to the Greater New Orleans area. GE has also been moving and creating technology jobs in other areas, like Detroit, Richmond, VA and San Ramon, CA. Some other medium sized metro areas doing well in new information sector job creation include areas that would not surprise you, like Austin, TX and Raleigh, NC. These mid-sized markets have been pulling jobs from places like New York City and Boston, MA for a generation. Some smaller metro areas are gaining more than their share of new information sector jobs. These include:

  1. Trenton, NJ
  2. Provo, UT
  3. Ogden, UT
  4. Salt Lake City, UT

Some smaller areas attract jobs due to lifestyle preferences or the proximity to colleges in universities. Among these are

  • Baton Rouge, LA
  • Lansing, MI
  • Santa Barbara, CA
  • Madison, WI
  • Albuquerque, NM
  • Cheyenne, WY
  • College Station, TX
  • Tyler, TX
  • Flint, MI
  • Columbus, IN

Big Markets Struggling to Grow

While New York and Los Angeles still enjoy information sector jobs that number between 150,000 and 200,000 in each area, both regions are stagnant with little growth after downsizing the sector in the last decade.

Find Out More

If you would like to find out more about local opportunities in the New Orleans information industry, please contact us today. With our network of contacts throughout film, finance, IT and more, FBT Film can help you find the local partners you need to make your project a success.

Data Source: http://www.forbes.com/sites/joelkotkin/2013/05/23/the-cities-winning-the-battle-for-information-jobs/