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Certain Cities Offer Strong Job Prospects

Life Events

It shouldn't come as a surprise that certain U.S. cities offer better job prospects than others, but the cities offering the best probabilities for landing a strong career might be an eye-opener for ambitious professionals.

In a recent report from Glassdoor, an online career site, cities were ranked based on three essential employment factors: cost of living, how easy it is to land a job and job satisfaction [1]. Using this formula, Glassdoor ranked the top 25 cities by creating a job score, which was decided by median pay for employees, median home values, number of current job openings compared to the population and job satisfaction rating.

It should be noted that Glassdoor did not include every U.S. city in the rankings, as it only examined the 50 most populous cities. Here are the results:

The top five cities for job seekers
Under Glassdoor's guidelines, Raleigh, North Carolina, finished first with a job score of 4.1, the only city to earn a job score of more than 3.9. Raleigh received high marks for the number of job openings (24,146) compared to its population (1.2 million). The median base salary in the city was nearly $51,000, while the median home value in Raleigh is $198,400.

Kansas City, Missouri; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; Austin, Texas; and Seattle rounded out the top five cities for jobs, according to Glassdoor. All four cities had job score ratings of 3.9.

Seattle had the highest median salary of the bunch at $70,000, but the city also had the highest median home value at $344,700. Oklahoma City was on the opposite end of the spectrum with a median salary of $38,100. However, Oklahoma City's median home values obviously helped its residents bank on finding affordable homes, as the median home costs just below $130,000. 

Amanda Abella, a career coach and founder of the Gen Y lifestyle blog Grad Meets World, told Forbes that job seekers need to get with the times and be willing to take advantage of anything and everything, which could include moving to a city with great job prospects [2].

"Times are always changing and while it's always good to follow the basic advice, we also have to get rolling with the times," Abell a said. "For instance, group interviews are making a comeback, we've got Skype interviews now, or you may interview in front of a panel. All this stuff didn't happen as often before - so while the same basic stuff applies, we have to take into account all the new dynamics."

Job search advice for recent graduates
While moving to one of those aforementioned cities might be a smart idea for some recent college graduates, not everyone will be able to pull off such a move. But there are other ways to stay ahead of the curve when it comes to landing a job.

U.S. News & World Report stated recent graduates should avoid taking time off before tackling their job hunt [3]. While some students might consider taking the summer off to travel or enjoy some leisure time after completing their degree, U.S. News stated this isn't the best idea.

The source stated the longer a person waits to start their job search, the longer they should expect to find a career. This is somewhat cyclical, as the longer someone is unemployed, the less attractive they look to a prospective employer.

Trends among the best cities for job hunters
Glassdoor reported Raleigh is very similar to mid-size tech cities such as Seattle and Austin. Those cities tend to provide a decent starting salary and don't come attached with the high costs of cities such as New York, San Francisco or Boston.


[1]. 25 Best Cities For Jobs

[2]. 10 Unconventional (But Very Effective) Tips For Job Seekers

[3]. Graduating Soon? Here's How to Kick Off Your Job Search


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