According to a report from IT staffing firm Robert Half Technology, Philly came in at No. 7 in a ranking of U.S. cities projected to grow tech hiring in 2018.

San Diego, Atlanta and New York top the list, released Wednesday by the company as part of its “IT Hiring Forecast and Local Trend Report.”

“CIOs in Philadelphia are already thinking about the future when it comes to adding new team members and getting new projects off the ground,” said Maria Incollingo, director of the company’s Philly division. “We are seeing increased demand for developers, information security professionals and, in particular, skilled network and telecommunications candidates who can help with upgrading hardware and software across the organization.”

The study showed 24 percent of Chief Innovation Officers (CIOs) plan to add new, full-time tech jobs to their teams in the first six months of 2018. That’s a 7 percent uptick from last year’s report. (FYI, those CIOs should really check out our NET/WORK job fair on Feb. 27. Job seekers, you can get tickets here for $10.)

Conversely, 66 percent of execs said it’s hard to find top talent in the city.

“In Philadelphia especially, it can be difficult for smaller companies to compete in terms of salary,” Incollingo said. “However, the smaller companies can make up for it with flexibility and office culture — allowing employees to work remotely, offering bonuses or even hosting company outings. Those are not only attractive options for new tech candidates, but they also help retain current employees that you can’t afford to lose to a competitor.”

The results of the report echo another study done by the Economy League of Philadelphia and published over the summer, which found that Philly’s workforce was “constrained by an undersupply of qualified candidates and a lack of diversity.”

It was the Economy League’s report which helped frame part of the conversation for CS4Philly — the computer-science education effort spearheaded by tech exec and former Philly Startup Leaders president Bob Moul — which held its kickoff event Dec. 6. Backed by two dozen institutional partners, the push seeks to have computer science be part of the curriculum in every K–12 public school in Philly.

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