San Francisco, CA

San Francisco Bay Area Holds Steadfast at #1 in CBRE’s Annual ‘Scoring Tech Talent’ Report

Tech talent has grown by 13 percent over last five years, bringing the tech industry’s share of this employment to 66.7 percent

July 14, 2022


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The San Francisco Bay Area remains the top market in CBRE’s 2022 Scoring Tech Talent report for the 10th consecutive year. North American tech talent bounced back from the pandemic to post job gains across most top markets in 2021, though the industry’s resilience will be tested again amid economic turmoil in 2022.

Last year, the U.S. added a net 136,000 tech talent jobs across established hubs such as the San Francisco Bay Area, New York and Seattle as well as smaller markets like Nashville, Cleveland and California’s Inland Empire.

The San Francisco Bay Area has largest tech labor market at 378,870 workers, a 13 percent increase from 2016. The tech industry in the San Francisco Bay Area accounts for two-thirds of tech talent employment in the region, the highest share of any market and well above the 41 percent U.S. average.

“Demand for tech talent remains at an all-time high despite economic precautions from tech employers. Bay Area tech companies have fueled the region’s economy and continue to support its growth by developing some of the most sought-after talent and innovations in the world. As a result, the Bay Area remains the most dynamic tech ecosystem and well-positioned for the future,” said Todd Husak, Managing Director and Leader of CBRE’s Bay Area Tech and Media Practice.

Meanwhile, the tech industry has embraced remote work as a new way to expand; Nearly a quarter of all tech job listings now are for remote positions.

“Tech talent and the broader technology industry have time and again proven resilient amid economic cycles,” said Colin Yasukochi, Executive Director of CBRE’s Tech Insights Center in San Francisco. “We’ve seen in the past that, when the tech industry retrenches, companies tend to eliminate support jobs in favor of retaining their tech talent. Meanwhile, North American tech markets continue to produce innovations that draw customer demand. And now increased remote hiring can spread tech talent job growth across all markets.”

CBRE’s Scoring Tech Talent report, now in its 10th year, ranks the top 50 North American markets by analyzing 13 measures of their ability to attract and develop tech talent, including tech graduation rates, tech-job concentration, tech labor pool size, and labor and real estate costs.

CBRE also ranks the Next 25 emerging tech markets on a narrower set of criteria. Tech talent is defined as 20 key tech professions -- such as software engineers and systems and data managers – across all industries.

The San Francisco Bay Area stood out in the report in several other key areas:

  • The Bay Area has the second highest concentration of tech talent, more than double the 50-market average of 5.6 percent. Three-fourths of software engineers work for tech companies, which is the second most concentrated market of software engineers behind Seattle.
  • The Bay Area has the highest quality software engineers, measured by the number and concentration of software engineers with three or more years of experience and graduated from one of the top 25 computer science programs in North America, including the top five in Canada, as determined by U.S. News & World Report. The region’s average annual tech wage ($139,907) is the highest in North America and has grown 15.8 percent in the last five years.
  • The Bay Area was the fifth largest producer of tech-related degrees, with 9,920 tech degrees (bachelor’s degree or higher) completed in 2020.
  • The region is one of the top five markets for female graduates with tech-related degrees, alongside Pittsburgh, Boston, Seattle and New York metro. It also the second most diverse large market for female tech talent (25.1%), but there is work to be done in closing the gender gap.
  • The region continues to be the most expensive market to operate a 500-employee tech company occupying 75,000 sq. ft. The average one-year operating cost is an estimated $69.2 million.

Top 10 Tech Talent Markets

 Rank  Market  Index Score
 1  San Francisco Bay Area   85.52
 2  Seattle  79.39
 3  Toronto  68.93
 4  Washington, D.C.  67.88
 5  New York Metro  67.08
 6  Austin  65.19
 7  Boston  62.38
 8  Vancouver  62.19
 9  Dallas/Fort Worth  58.57
 10  Denver  57.53

To download the report, click here.


About CBRE Group, Inc.
CBRE Group, Inc. (NYSE:CBRE), a Fortune 500 and S&P 500 company headquartered in Dallas, is the world’s largest commercial real estate services and investment firm (based on 2023 revenue). The company has more than 130,000 employees (including Turner & Townsend employees) serving clients in more than 100 countries. CBRE serves a diverse range of clients with an integrated suite of services, including facilities, transaction and project management; property management; investment management; appraisal and valuation; property leasing; strategic consulting; property sales; mortgage services and development services. Please visit our website at