If you think Silicon Valley is the best and only tech hub, you’re not alone. But you’re also wrong. Omaha’s Silicon Prairie was recently named the “Top City to Work in Tech” by financial advice tech company SmartAsset, and it’s easy to see why. Omaha is home to four Fortune 500 companies, established technology businesses and a thriving startup community, and there are plenty of reasons top talent and employers are converging to make Omaha a top tech city. For 5 reasons, go to
1. An abundance of great-paying tech jobs.
If you’re looking for a job in tech, start in Omaha. We have plenty. On average, there are around 600 open tech positions in the Greater Omaha area, and they pay well. If you’re a recent grad, you can expect to earn $40,000-$65,000 right out of the gate, depending on your specialty, and overall, tech workers tend to make between 47 and 118 percent more than the average Omaha worker.
2. Affordable living.
The money from those tech jobs goes farther in Omaha, too. The overall cost of living is 12 percent lower than the national average, and the median house price is $160,400. For comparison, the median house price for San Jose’s Silicon Valley is $980,000, meaning homeownership is much more realistic here. More interested in renting? The news is good there, too. A one-bedroom apartment rents for $730 a month compared to $3,670 in San Jose.If you’ve never been to Omaha, you’ll be happy to note that it’s not all farmland, either. There are suburbs and few cornfields on the edges, sure, but there’s also a thriving downtown and revitalized urban areas.
3. The startup seedbed.
Omaha is no stranger to innovative thinking—more than 40 growing startups are currently based here. One of them, Flywheel, a WordPress hosting and management startup, just raised $4 million in their Series A, and video analytics provider Drive Spotter just announced the completion of a $750,000 seed round. Omaha is also home to grownup startups like Hudl, a sports video analysis tool used by more than 100,000 teams around the world.
4. Tech training.
Omaha’s tech groups and schools help train those who want to get into the tech field and fill the funnel for companies looking for talent. Omaha Code School turns beginners into hirable web developers in just 16 weeks, and Interface Web School offers part-time classes that start after 5 p.m., so students can keep their jobs while preparing for the next step. For the younger set, CodeCrush offers an immersion experience for 8th and 9th grade girls.
5. A true tech community.
Omaha offers a great support system for the tech community with organizations like AIM and The Exchange Building, which provide community, mentorship, office space and access to capital for startups.
Word is getting out about the Silicon Prairie. A recent Dice study shows that Nebraska is the #3 fastest growing state for tech jobs (seven spots above California, by the way), and Omaha’s reputation as a top tech city is growing. The idea that Silicon Valley is the place to be for tech is quickly becoming outdated. With both opportunity and innovation, today’s tech talent and entrepreneurs are better served looking to the Silicon Prairie.
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