Glassdoor, a web site for job openings and reviews of employers, says Raleigh is No. 1 in its new “25 Best Cities for Jobs” study.


From job openings to job satisfaction, cost of living, its environment, and more, including “walkable neighborhoods and affordable homes.” There also are more than 24,000 open positions even though the Raleigh metro area’s unemployment rate is well under 5 percent.

And many jobs are good ones. In fact, only six of the top 25 cities scored better than Raleigh’s collective score of 3.3 for collective “jobs satisfaction.” That total backs a recent Forbes study in which several Triangle employers such as SAS, Quintiles and Citrix Sharefile, received high scores.

While the study cites Raleigh specifically, its data covers much of the Triangle since the population is cited as being more than 1.2 million. Raleigh and Cary have a combined population of around 600,000, according to a 2013 Census estimate.

Glassdoor, which lists some 6 million jobs, tells employment seekers that “all cities are not created equal for jobs.”

Raleigh tops the “Job Score” rating with a score of 4.1 – 0.2 points higher than No. 2 Austin, Texas; Kansas City, Seattle and Oklahoma City.

Comparing Raleigh, Austin

Austin and Raleigh are often considered rivals for jobs, especially in technology. And the Glassdoor study notes a couple of advantages for North Carolina’s capital:

  • Average salaries are higher ($51,000 compared to Austin’s $50,000)
  • Median home value is $198,400 ($226,000 in Austin)

Why Raleigh?

Glassdoor Chief Economist Dr. Andrew Chamberlain praised Raleigh as the top choice for several reasons.

“Raleigh has long held a reputation for tech companies looking to flee the expensive and congested Northeast corridor, with companies like IBM, Cisco and SAS setting up shop in North Carolina. Raleigh is also situated in the famous Research Triangle and has several universities feeding skilled workers to employers. Couple this with Raleigh’s walkable neighborhoods and affordable homes, it’s no surprise that Raleigh stands out as the best city for jobs,” he said in the survey.

So what do the top cities have in common? Chamberlain cited Raleigh again in his summary.

“Raleigh’s appeal mirrors the overarching trend we’re seeing across this list. The cities that really stand out offer job seekers what they really want: a stable career that they’re happy with, and the feeling that they can get ahead and eventually own a home.,” he said.

“We see this taking place in fast-growing, mid-sized tech magnets like Austin and Seattle which have benefitted tremendously from the tech boom as an alternative to high-cost tech hubs such as San Francisco, Boston and New York City. Job seekers are also being pulled towards cities like Kansas City and Louisville that boast a stable middle-class and affordable, family-friendly neighborhoods. While these cities may not have scorching tech job growth, they make up for it with low housing costs compared to paychecks and affordable middle-class neighborhoods.”

The data, rankings

Glassdoor listed several data points for each of the 25 cities,

For Raleigh, the data:

Raleigh, NC – Glassdoor Job Score: 4.1

  • Number of Job Openings: 24,146
  • Population: 1,242,974
  • Median Base Salary: $50,950
  • Median Home Value: $198,400
  • Job Satisfaction Rating: 3.3

The rest of the top 25 list, including ties:

  • Kansas City, MO – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.9
  • Oklahoma City, OK – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.9
  • Austin, TX – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.9
  • Seattle, WA – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.9
  • Salt Lake City, UT – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.8
  • San Jose, CA – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.7
  • Louisville, KY – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.7
  • San Antonio, TX – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.7
  • Washington, D.C. – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.7
  • St. Louis, MO – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.7
  • San Francisco, CA – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.7
  • Columbus, OH – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.6
  • Dallas-Fort Worth, TX – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.6
  • Boston, MA – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.6
  • Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.6
  • Atlanta, GA – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.5
  • Memphis, TN – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.4
  • Indianapolis, IN – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.3
  • Chicago, IL – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.3
  • Houston, TX – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.3
  • Baltimore, MD – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.3
  • Richmond, VA – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.2
  • Pittsburgh, PA – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.1
  • Nashville, TN – Glassdoor Job Score: 3.1

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