Georgia On My Mind: Atlanta Cracks Top 5 in Job Postings

At Gray, we use our Job Postings data in a variety of ways. We can discern what occupations are in demand, who is hiring for certain positions, and which companies are most active in seeking employees. When examined alongside the July 2021 census results, however, we discovered a potential new use of the data: a predictor of market growth and opportunity for higher-education institutions.

Here is a look at the ten largest cities in the U.S. by population:

No surprises here.  Now let’s look at the top ten cities by job postings:

Of note here, Los Angeles, second in population, doesn’t make the top ten postings, perhaps underscoring recent rumors of a California exodus. 

Houston, the city with the fourth-highest population, has the highest job postings per capita. But look at Atlanta.  It comes in fifth on our list, with more than 74,000 postings so far in 2022.  So how much of an overreach is this? According to the July 1 2021 Census, Atlanta, Georgia, with a population of 532,695, is the 35th largest city in the United States. 

So what is driving this employment boom?  According to a recent CNBC article, tech companies such as Apple, Alphabet, and Microsoft have all opened or expanded offices in Atlanta in recent years, as have Visa, Blackrock and Airbnb.  So are these companies driving the employment boom?  Our data suggests otherwise:

More than half of the top ten job postings in Atlanta follow a national trend: healthcare. Six of the ten entities with the most postings are hospitals, medical centers, or health insurance companies. There are three tech companies (including Microsoft), but other heavy hitters such as Apple and Visa are not among the most active in hiring.

The bottom line here seems to be that while tech is growing at a tremendous rate in Atlanta, the medical industry is currently the largest driver of employment. Having grown more than 24% in population since the 2010 census, it feels safe to say that Atlanta is only going to continue to attract new residents just as it has drawn new companies.

Data Sources: 

US Population by City

Job Postings Dashboard
Jan – April 2022
Cities by top-posting volume
Companies with the highest job postings in Atlanta

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Gray Associates, Inc. is a software and services firm focused on higher education. We help education clients develop fact-based institutional and marketing strategies that maximize outcomes for students, the school, and its constituencies.

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