Analysis: Tech sector growing in Colorado

Employment in Colorado’s technology industry increased an estimated 6,530 in 2017 while the economic contribution from the sector swelled to more than $43 billion, according to the latest results of an annual analysis conducted by a technology industry association.

Tech employment in Colorado grew 2.3 percent, the 10th fastest pace in the United States, according to the Cysterstates analysis published by the Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA).

With 285,300 workers, Colorado ranks 15th among the 50 states and District of Columbia in net tech employment.

Meanwhile, the tech sector accounts for an estimated 14 percent of the overall economy in Colorado, which is home to nearly 16,600 tech businesses.

“Colorado’s collaborative, innovative tech community continues to propel the state’s economy,” said Monica Coughlin, interim president and chief executive officer of the Colorado Technology Association. “We see it every day working with partners and leaders, and CompTIA’s research highlights the immense impact tech has on Colorado’s success.”

The tech sector work force accounts for 9.7 percent of the total work force in Colorado. The average tech industry wage is $110,550, nearly double the average private sector annual wage of $55,710.

Colorado ranks ninth for its Cyberstates Innovation Score, down from fourth place last year. This ranking is based on a state-by-state per capita analysis of new tech patents awarded, tech startups and new tech businesses.

Colorado saw a 44.3 percent increase from 2016 to 2017 in the number of job postings related to emerging technologies, including blockchain, artificial intelligence, augmented reality, drones, the internet of things, machine learning, smart cities and virtual reality. While the positions accounted for a small percentage of total tech job postings, the increase signals where organizations are headed with technology investments.

The strongest year-over-year job growth occurred in the category of IT services and custom software services with a 4.8 percent gain.

Cyberstates is based on CompTIA’s analysis of data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and Bureau of Economic Analysis, Burning Glass Technologies Labor Insights and other sources. For more information, visit www.cyberstates.org.

CompTIA serves as an advocate for the $4.8 trillion global information technology industry and the professionals who design, implement, manage and safeguard the technology. For more information, visit www.comptia.org.