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What’s New in “Silicon Prairie”? The State of the Dallas Tech Scene

by Concero on July 10, 2024 in Concero, Dallas, IT

 

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Move over Silicon Valley. It’s time for “Silicon Prairie” — aka North Dallas — to shine. As numerous tech companies expand their operations and relocate headquarters to the area, Dallas is home to a fast-growing tech and IT community. If you’re thinking about breaking in, here’s a brief rundown of the state of the Dallas tech scene.

Whatever happened to Silicon Valley?

The mass exodus of technology headquarters from California to Texas is striking. Oracle and Tesla are now in Austin, and Hewlett-Packard is now based out of Houston, and Microsoft, Salesforce, Intuit, and the like are expanding their Dallas operations.

The tech world’s center of gravity is quickly shifting away from the West Coast toward the middle of the country. There are a number of reasons for this change:

  • Top technology talent fled Southern California during and after the pandemic, trading household names and high-growth startups for more stable, flexible work
  • California’s high costs and regulation present an untenable financial situation for many companies, especially considering an overall tight economy
  • Dallas has access to fresh pools of capital, which are appealing to companies looking to expand
  • Texas has a lower cost of living than California, reducing expenses both on the business and talent side

Why is North Dallas dubbed “Silicon Prairie”?

So what is it about Dallas that these companies seem to love? Here are a few top reasons:

  • Strong Economy—The overall Dallas-Fort Worth economy shows strong economic indicators, making it an attractive place for investors, business leaders, and talent alike.
  • Lower Taxes & Regulations—Dallas has no corporate income tax, which significantly cuts expenses for companies headquartered here.
  • Growing Talent Pool—The DFW metro area has led the nation in terms of population increases, and technology companies are eager to land and hold onto that top talent.
  • Reduced Commutes—Lower cost of living enables people to live closer to work, cutting down commute times (despite the *ahem* memorable interchanges) and enabling greater productivity.
  • Community and Collaboration—Dallas’s tech community has a strong sense of pride, as companies like Intuit and Salesforce demonstrate. There’s a strong commitment to innovation, customer obsession, community outreach, and more.

Which major technology companies have a footprint in Dallas?

Numerous reputable technology companies have relocated their headquarters to Dallas or significantly expanded their operations there: Microsoft, Salesforce, Texas Instruments, AT&T, Intuit, and Cisco among them. Let’s look at a few examples and see what this spells for the broader tech scene.

Microsoft

Microsoft has been building out their Dallas presence for the better part of the last decade. But they’ve stepped up their game recently. Earlier this year, the tech giant acquired 377 acres of farmland in Van Meter’s Vision Park to build an expanded data center. Microsoft also invested $1.5B in Emirati AI company G42 to build a new supercomputer in Dallas.

That Microsoft—undoubtedly the biggest player in the U.S —has its eye firmly fixed on Dallas bodes well for the broader tech scene. Where they go, the competition is sure to follow. The result: a growing, thriving marketplace.

Salesforce

Having established a presence in Dallas back in 2017, Salesforce continues to expand their presence in the greater DFW metro area. The company’s Dallas hub employs system specialists, engineers, account executives, and other personnel to support business-critical functions.

Salesforce prides itself on a culture that prioritizes innovation, customer obsession, and community engagement. We’ve already seen how these values are trickling down to impact the broader tech community, creating an exciting, lively, and collaborative IT culture.

Motorola

Back in 2021, Motorola significantly expanded their Dallas presence by placing a central manufacturing hub in Richardson, bringing an estimated 250 new tech jobs to the city. This is after purchasing multiple Dallas-based companies, thus consolidating their presence in the area.

Motorola is only one of many technology manufacturers with an expanded presence in the region. These moves show that not only software and data investments are on the rise, but technology as a whole. Regardless of your skills or niche, opportunities abound.

What does this mean for the Dallas tech job market?

So let’s get down to brass tacks: what does this mean for you as you navigate the Dallas tech scene? Specifically, how should this inform your job search efforts? Here are our top three takeaways.

High competition for talent

As leading tech companies up their Dallas footprint, the need for top tech talent is only going to increase. On the one hand, more opportunity is great news. On the other hand, a growing talent pool means more competition. Which means you’ll need to find ways to differentiate, whether that’s through a particular skill, niche, or track record of success.

Diverse talent needs

The tech job descriptions that come across our desk run the gamut. There’s a diverse range of hot, in-demand skills, including:

  • Network engineers
  • Software engineers
  • Systems engineers
  • Cloud data engineers
  • ERP analysts

Additionally, expertise in specific platforms—Salesforce and NetSuite are two examples—are also highly coveted. Basically, if you want to find your niche and differentiate from the competition, there are plenty of lanes for you to choose from.

Support & collaboration

One thing we love about the Dallas tech scene is the emphasis on collaboration and community. It’s not a cutthroat environment. So you’ll find your fellow techies to be supportive, helpful, and just all around great fun.

Make Silicon Prairie’s tech scene work for you

If you want to break into the new Silicon Prairie, you need a recruitment firm who knows the lay of the land. We’ve been at this for over a decade—not only working with native Texan companies, but also large tech firms who have relocated.

We put the “tech” in Texas. If you’re looking for top talent or for new opportunities, let’s connect.

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