Madison’s high tech job growth far outpaces the national average

By Polo Rocha, WisBusiness

Skyline_of_Madison_WisconsinP_webMadison’s high tech job growth far outpaced the national average, but Milwaukee’s was nearly stagnant, according to a new report from the Brookings Institution.

The report looked at “advanced industries” in U.S. metro areas, evaluating a wide range of sectors from software to manufacturing that are STEM-heavy or require research and development.

Those jobs are important, in part, because they have broader economic spillovers and pay people more. In Wisconsin, those jobs pay people $74,486 on average, while the average salary in the state is $45,184.

Nationally, the report found, jobs in those sectors grew by 2.46 percent between 2013 and 2015. Madison had a 6.04 percent jump, ranking it 11th in the country, while the Milwaukee area ranked 69th with a 0.66 percent increase.

The Milwaukee findings can largely be explained by the downturn in the global economy, which has heavily affected big companies headquartered there. Layoffs at mining equipment makers Joy Global and Caterpillar, for example, helped lead to the 5.9 percent drop in jobs in those sectors between 2013 and 2015, the report found. Read more …