CyberStates 2018 Industry Report

The results are in. The Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) recently released their updated CyberStates 2018 report and the results are jarring. CyberStates “quantifies the size and scope of the tech industry and the tech workforce across multiple vectors. CyberStates includes time-series trending, average wages, business establishments, job postings, gender ratios, innovation and emerging tech metrics, and more” (CyberStates).In case you do not have time to read all 151 pages of the CyberStates report, let us break down the key points.

The technology industry is continuing to grow while the national unemployment rate has been at a record low. In today's accelerated market finding the best candidates is difficult in a flooded industry. For this reason, IGNW has over 100 expert technologists, expert engineers and seasoned business consultants with years of experience executing on complex business and IT initiatives. As experts, proud of our craft, we strive to deliver quality and performance above all else.  We will never pretend to "know everything about your business" after only a few meetings, but will take the time to learn, ask the right questions, and learn some more. Only then will we execute, together with you, on your most important business initiatives.

The key take away from the 151 rich pages is our market is rapidly changing and flooded with new talent. As we already know, new talent does not alway mean quality talent.

The industry is growing - Focus on quality candidates. 


Big Picture: 8 Key Forces Shaping the Tech Landscape:

  • The Insights Economy Comes Into Focus: The ongoing digitization of information, and more recently, the mass deployment of sensors, are ushering in what can be characterized as the insights economy. Enabled by machine learning, artificial intelligence and other emerging tools, raw data can more efficiently and effectively be converted into value, which may take the form of pattern recognition, predictive analytics, natural language processing, computer vision, or other output.

  • Internet of Things Expands Technology Footprints: IoT devices are rapidly making their way into corporate spaces. From gathering new data to automation of infrastructure, companies are finding many benefits from adding connectivity and intelligence to physical infrastructure. Adding digital capabilities to everyday components drastically increases the scope of IT responsibilities, which means new skills will be needed and the further refining of IoT strategies to ensure proper alignment with business needs.

  • Businesses Race to Upgrade Digital Expertise in the Boardroom: Increasingly, organizations recognize the importance of having a tech-savvy boardroom. This doesn’t necessarily mean having deep technical knowledge, but rather having a feel for the tech landscape, knowing the types of questions to ask, and being able to push back when necessary. Additionally, with the consequences of a single digital misstep becoming more severe, board-level engagement with cybersecurity and data governance is no longer optional.

  • ‘New Collar’ Jobs Mindset Gains Momentum, but Challenges Persist: The concept of ‘new collar’ jobs is a call to action to recognize the changing nature of middle-skill jobs and the need for new approaches to training and preparing the workforce of tomorrow. This change is largely a function of the intersection of technology and just about everything in the economy, from products and workflows to supply chains and job roles. More alternatives to the traditional 4-year college degree are needed, especially skills-centered training and certification approaches resulting in a jobs-ready candidate.

  • The Democratization of Technology Leads to Breakthrough Models: The toolset for building technology has been steadily growing more accessible. In 2018, though, a tipping point will be reached. As software becomes the driving force of many solutions, open source concepts allow far more people to build applications around blockchain, natural language processing, or contextaware computing. Hardware is also more of an open toolbox, as makers explore novel use cases using drones, robotics, and 3D printing.

  • Cloud Enters New Phase of Maturity: Over the past decade, organizations of all sizes have steadily moved through the stages of the cloud adoption progression framework. Many are now reaching the final stage – transformed IT, where the architecture is rebuilt to maximize cloud characteristics. Unlike the first two stages, later-stage challenges are not primarily technical. Instead, companies must build or reconfigure the appropriate policies and workflow for a cloud-based approach.

  • Artificial Intelligence Adds a New Layer to the Solution Stack: Amid the wave of emerging technologies, artificial intelligence stands out as the one most likely to drive revolutionary changes to the technology ecosystem. AI requires significant compute resources (which can be procured in the cloud), various algorithms that allow learning (which can be baked into products or provided as a service), and contextual awareness (which can come from massive collections of data). By adding a layer of intelligence, companies are better positioned to solve a broader range of problems.

  • Growing Up: Tech May No Longer Automatically Be Given the Benefit of the Doubt Signs point to changing expectations and a different environment unfolding for the tech industry. Questions surrounding security, privacy, screen time, and toxic corporate cultures continue to intensify. Concerns over market concentration, the power imbalances of gatekeepers, and the threat of automation loom. To be clear, technology will continue to overwhelmingly be viewed as a force for good, but the industry will need to spend more time looking at itself in the mirror to ensure this sentiment continues.


Oregon has 7,033 Technology business establishments (firms with payroll) while we also have 39,360 tech occupation job postings (2017 total). As Oregon’s tech industry grows, the tech industry employment increases by 2.3% in 2016-2017. Please see “Tech Industry Employment” chart. The chart shows a continued steady rise in the tech industry employment in Oregon.

The United States has a whole has added 125,670 technology jobs to the market with a 1.9% increase between 2016-2017.

In the United States we can expect,

  • “Looking ahead, the outlook for technology employment points to a continuation of the growth trend. During the 2016-2026 time period, projections from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics indicate the base of tech occupations will increase by 626,000 new jobs. When factoring in the need to replace retiring or career-change workers, the total potential tech workforce need will exceed 1.2 million through 2026.
  • For context, national employment during the 2016-2026 period is projected to grow by 7.4 percent versus 8.6 percent among tech occupations (inclusive of all 50 categories used in Cyberstates).
  • Looking beyond the overall average reveals occupations within technology growing many times faster than national average. Projected change 2016-2026: ⇥ Software developers, applications: +31% ⇥ Information security analysts: +29% ⇥ Computer and information research scientists: +19% ⇥ CNC machine tool programmers: +16% ⇥ Web developers: +15% ⇥ On a numerical basis, software developers, applications will contribute the most new jobs through 2026, followed by computer support specialists, systems analysts, CIOs and other managerial positions, and information security analysts.
  • During this period (2018-2026), an estimated 545,000 technology professionals will exit the tech workforce due to retirement, career change, or job displacement. In some industries, replacing retiring Baby Boomers is a pressing concern”(CompTIA).

Now let's chat about Portland specifically.

Portland hits the sweet spot of being between the Silicon Forest and Silicon Valley. 

The market is continuing to grow; however, this does not necessarily mean all new candidates are quality. IGNW's internal solution team has the capability to vet out candidates to provide only the best.