Report finds high-tech industry is outpacing state economy
The Montana High Tech Alliance, a statewide membership organization with more than 250 high-tech and manufacturing companies, and the BBER surveyed its members on everything from wages to projected employment growth. Alliance member companies expect to add 940 jobs this year that pay average annual salaries of $56,800, more than twice the median salary of the average Montana worker of $25,594. Salaries at the companies are growing 30 percent faster than in other sectors.
Alliance member companies on average expect to raise wages by 5 percent this year, significantly higher than the 3.5 percent average rate of growth in Montana’s overall private sector. Member companies are clustered around Missoula and Bozeman, but can be found all over the state. In 2015, workers in the high-tech industry in Montana could expect to earn $65,126 a year, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. That's behind only the mining, utilities and management industries. The average job in Montana pays $39,372 annually.
Alliance member companies plan to make more than $123 million in major capital investments in Montana in 2016, and 16 percent of them plan to invest more than $300,000. “Workiva has offices in Bozeman and Missoula because Montana is a great place for technology talent," said Matt Rizai, chairman and CEO of the company. "We also benefit from the high-quality software talent coming from the University of Montana and Montana State University."
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