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No. 2 City for Women in Tech
Kansas City is ranked No. 2 Best City for Women in Tech based on gender pay gap, income after housing cost, women as a percentage of the tech workforce, and four-year tech employment growth.
SmartAsset, February 2018

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Top City for Tech and Entrepreneurship
KC ranks alongside Silicon Valley as a top tech city in the U.S., with access to talent, capital investment and opportunity for growth were all factors in determining the top cities. 
Cushman & Wakefield, June 2017

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No. 4 Best City for Startups in U.S.
According to Entrepreneur Magazine, Kansas City ranks fourth among nine selected cities for startup companies. Within the last two years, 71 food-based startups alone have sprouted in the KC region. 
Entrepreneur, May 2017

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Jill_B&W_0730-web

Jill McCarthy

Senior Executive | Corporate Attraction
816.374.5636
With more than 25 years of experience, Jill leads the business development team.

Technology

Innovation and entrepreneurship is at the foundation of the Kansas City region and drives the tech landscape here. The industrious spirit of KC has led to innovations impacting the world in healthcare, finance, supply chain and logistics, animal health and bioscience, cyber security, engineering, telecommunications and more.

At a time when development and attraction of tech talent is a key driver of economic competitiveness, the Kansas City region recognizes the importance of cultivating the digital workforce of the future. The Kansas City region is embracing and even pioneering technological advancement. This will allow the region to be an asset for any company looking to gain a technological edge.


KC Technology Jobs KC Technology Companies 
 99,300  3,876
 KC Tech Specs 2018  KC Tech Specs 2018

Sectors

With the most geographically centric technology industry in the nation, Kansas City is a unique home for multinational corporations and startups alike. The crossroads of all the nation’s fiber, KC has long been a destination for innovators and pioneers. Kansas City’s tech sector is growing faster than the national average, directly contributing almost 10% to our regional economy. 

The diverse and well-balanced economy, network infrastructure and skilled workforce of KC makes it attractive to the technology industry. There are certain sectors with particular strengths in KC:
 

Fintech

KC has the financial base and technology components needed for a thriving Fintech ecosystem. Fintech is a highly entrepreneurial industry where success is amplified by collaboration. There are 68 banks chartered in the Kansas City region alone – that’s more than the entire state of Arizona. Whether that support comes from those banks or established private sector companies, non-profits, education, government or the connectedness that comes from the density of an innovation hub, KC has it.

Strategic partnership and recognition of a changing banking industry was behind nbkc bank’s funding of startup eSmartloan.com in the mid-2000s. The opportunity paid off when eSmartloan.com sold to Capital One for more than $145 million five years later. In 2017, CommunityAmerica Credit Union started utilizing a teen advisory board made up of 20 local high school students focused on digital innovation in addition to the creation of their Innovation Lab that uses principles from startups and lean methodology to create new products and services.

Most recently, nbkc bank launched a joint venture with LaunchKC—Fountain City Fintech—one of very few accelerators uniquely focused on technology-driven innovation in the financial services industry. Companies will get access to capital, mentorship and access to a forward-thinking bank partner, plus a curriculum of invaluable content from the nation’s top subject matter experts.

As the first Gigabit connected region, a host of digital entrepreneurs seized the opportunity to make KC ground zero for innovation. From this community emerged several successful companies including blooom, a financial services company now worth $1B; ZOLOZ, a digital security firm that recently exited from startup status to become part of the AliBaba family; and Machine Halo, a national leader in public safety technology development. Kansas City is also home to C2FO who’s a two-time Forbes Fintech 50 company.

Cybersecurity

U.S. job growth of 18% is predicted by the US Department of Labor, and Forbes magazine predicts over a million job vacancies in cybersecurity in the immediate future. The cybersecurity market is expected to grow from $75 billion in 2015 to $170 billion in 2020. With regional assets, expanding educational pipeline, and the existing cybersecurity workforce employing 6,724, the KC region is prepared to seize the growth opportunity in the industry.

Assets

The FBI-Kansas City Division investigates terrorism, counterintelligence, cybercrime, public corruption, civil rights, organized crime, white-collar crime, violent crime and weapons of mass destruction. The KC Field Office conducts multiple outreach programs including the Citizens Academy, the Youth/Teen Academy, Junior Special Agent, FBI-SOS and several more.

Fort Leavenworth is the home of the U.S. Army's Combined Arms Center (CAC). CAC, as a major subordinate headquarters of the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command, has often been referred to as the "Intellectual Center of the Army." At present, the CAC is divided between preparing the Army for the Global War on Terrorism and transforming it to meet future threats. In order to accomplish these critical missions, CAC develops and integrates Army leader development, doctrine, education, lessons learned, functional training, training support, training development, and proponent responsibilities in order to support mission command and prepare the Army to successfully conduct unified land operations in a joint, inter-agency, inter-governmental, multinational environment.

Another rich asset for the KC region is one of the nation’s top fusion centers – the Kansas Intelligence Fusion Center (KIFC). At the KIFC, global intelligence collected by the Adjunct General is used by the Attorney General to prevent terrorism and crime, broadening the scope of other centers that simply investigate incidents after the fact. The KIFC is also unique in hosting biothreat and cybersecurity teams which include public and private‐sector subject matter experts to help analyze global and domestic threats. These outside experts hold security clearances, which lets them work with KIFC analysts to dissect classified data collected around the world. The additional expertise allows the KIFC to do a better job protecting this region, and also allows external individuals to do a better job protecting their company, university, hospital, state agency, etc. from biological and/or cybersecurity threats.

The United State Department of Agriculture (USDA) is one of the federal government’s leading providers of cloud-based hosting of enterprise management systems for other agencies and non-governmental entities. The National Information Technology Center-managed Enterprise Data Center is a federally owned Cloud services provider; offering agencies enterprise class infrastructure built from the ground up with market leading technologies. Two of their three data centers are located in Missouri, one of them being in Kansas City. Providing consistent, reliable and secure virtual environments to conduct the business of government agencies is essential in the 21st century.

Education

University of Kansas has a longstanding designation by the National Security Agency and Department of Homeland Security as a National Center for Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense. As of Spring 2018, the University of Kansas opened its National Security Laboratory that will enable KU scientists to conduct research for the Department of Defense and other U.S. government agencies.

The Center for Information and Systems Assurance (CISA) at Kansas State University is a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance/Cyber Defense Research as designated by the Department of Homeland Security and the National Security Agency. The mission of CISA is to conduct fundamental and applied research in information assurance and computer security, advance the knowledge base of our BS, MS, MSE, and PhD students to support the understanding, operation, and development of secure software systems.

Metropolitan Community College (MCC) is a CompTIA Authorized Academy Partner, a VMware Academic Partner, and a Cisco Networking Academy. MCC is currently preparing an application for an institutional designation by the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security to recognize institutions meeting certain criteria for excellence in Cyber Security Education and Practices.

In the fall of 2018, Northwest Missouri State University started offering a Bachelor of Science in cybersecurity. The program will help students develop skills and expertise related to cybersecurity, including the prevention and detection of cyberattacks on computer-related infrastructures within an organization. Students will gain a broad understanding of computer systems, including software, hardware, networks, information assurance and programming. Students also will develop skills related to computer security policies and implementation as well as a relevant understanding of social engineering as a means of computer vulnerability.

The University of Central Missouri Cybersecurity program is a leader in the state and nation. Our Cybersecurity program is the first Cybersecurity program to be ABET accredited in Missouri, and one of only a handful of accredited Cybersecurity programs in the nation. The curricula are designed according to the National Centers of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense. Through the option of a minor, two bachelor’s degrees and a master’s program, UCM students can learn to find vulnerabilities in code and fixing them before hackers exploit these vulnerabilities and designing, configuring, and deploying secure IT systems in an enterprise environment.

The University of Missouri System offers both undergraduate and graduate degrees in cybersecurity. The system has many assets like the National Centers of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense designated Cybersecurity & Information Technology Innovation Lab and the certified Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Research and has been since 2008. In 2018, the System’s flagship campus in Columbia had a student-led team who placed second at the SEC Student Cyber Challenge sponsored by Equifax.

Johnson County Community College (JCCC) offers a cybersecurity certificate that covers information security essentials, security architecture & design, hacking, defense and response. JCCC is a member of the National Cyberwatch Center. The A+ Certification provides a hands-on, in-depth course that prepares students for the A+ Certification exam from CompTIA. The Network+ class takes the introductory networking skills in the A+ class to the next level with server installations, hands-on work with network cabling and theory underlying computer networks. There is also career advancement opportunities, through test prep courses for Security+, CEH, and CISSP.

Local Security Groups
SecKC
(ISC)2
ISACA
Women in Security
Open Web Application Security Project
KC 2600
KC Tech

Integrated Solutions

Some of the largest and most recognizable KC companies are tech companies who provide integrated technology solutions to enterprises and customers alike. Garmin and Sprint are both homegrown and headquartered in KC, as are Cerner—a health care technology pioneer—and VML, a national Top-5 digital marketing communications service group. KC engineering companies designed water systems for 20% of the world’s population.

Technology touches all industries, and KC companies are creating specialized technology-oriented solutions with global impact through software, hardware, networks, telecommunications and electronics.

Global Technology Impact of Select KC Companies

  • Finance

Cboe Global Markets acquired the KC-headquartered BATS Global Markets in 2017 which operated four U.S. stock exchanges, two U.S. equity options exchanges, the pan-European stock market, and a global market for the trading of foreign exchange products. BATS was a disruptive force in the U.S. equity market for its electronic trading technology.

Epiq Global, headquarter in KC, provides technology solutions to support litigation, investigations, financial transactions, regulatory and compliance needs on four continents.

  • Government

Honeywell Federal Manufacturing & Technologies (FM&T) operates the Kansas City National Security Campus that delivers trusted national security products and services primarily for the National Nuclear Security Administration.

MRIGlobal provides solutions through scientific research, technology development, and technical services for the benefit of Department of Energy and the Department of Defense. Launched CBRNE Tech Index, a comprehensive database of Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and Explosive (CBRNE) detection equipment in 2014.

NIC, Inc. is a publicly traded eGovernment provider based in the KC region. It has long-term contracts with 3,500 state and local government and federal agencies to provide the IT software, system, consultancy and other relevant services.

  • Supply Chain & Logistics

Frieghtquote developed a patented-technology platform to enable shippers to find competitive rates that can be compared throughout North America. In 2015, Freightquote joined the C.H. Robinson family, a Fortune 500 company—combining strong e-commerce technology with global supply chain services.

DSI delivers supply chain technology solutions on four continents focused on helping companies advance their business to meet the accelerated demands of the digital economy through Cloud Inventory® solutions and mobile-first supply chain apps.

  • Health Care

Cerner is a supplier of health information technology (HIT) solutions, services, devices and hardware. As of 2018 its products were in use at more than 27,000 facilities around the world and the company had about 26,000 employees globally out of at least 25 countries.

Stowers Institute for Medical Research is a biomedical research organization that conducts research genes and proteins to better analyze diseases and find keys to their causes, treatment, and prevention. The Institute has spent over $1 billion on research and have pioneered many scientific breakthroughs for cancer treatment, including stem cell innovations.

Netsmart Technology solutions and services deliver analytics and insights that play a role in outcomes-based care to over 24,000 client organizations that help more than 25 million consumers every year.

University of Kansas Medical Center is home to The University of Kansas Cancer Center, a National Cancer Institute-designated cancer center (one of only 69 NCI-designated centers in the country), as well as a National Institutes of Health-designated Alzheimer's Disease Center (one of only 31 such centers in the country). It is also one of 62 institutions in the national Clinical and Translational Science Award consortium, where researchers are working to speed up basic-science discoveries into cures and treatments.

  • Engineering & Design

Black & Veatch has been a global leader in building Critical Human Infrastructure for more than a century. Black & Veatch has completed more than 10,000 water conveyance and storage projects and buried more than 12,000 miles of water, wastewater and stormwater infrastructure worldwide. In 2018, Black & Veatch’s telecommunications business was ranked No. 1 by Engineering News-Record for the seventh year.

Burns & McDonnell is made up of more than 6,000 engineers, architects, construction professionals, scientists, consultants and entrepreneurs with headquarters in Kansas City and offices across the country and throughout the world. In 2018, Burns & McDonell ranked in the Top 10 for 16 different critical infrastructure industries including first in power and transmission and distribution. Burns & McDonnell is 100 percent employee-owned and is on Fortune’s 2018 list of 100 Best Companies to Work For.

BNIM pioneers innovation in design that elevate human potential, greatly reduce environmental impact and produce rather than consume economic resources through productivity gains and increased effectiveness. BNIM played a key role in the development of USGBC, LEED and Living Building, while also founding the AIA Committee on the Environment. The world’s first LEED Platinum and Living Building was designed by BNIM.

Entrepreneurship

Rooted in history, our region is continuing to break barriers. KC features a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem where innovation is embraced. KC is home of the Kauffman Foundation—the global leader for advancing entrepreneurship—in addition to being the first city in the U.S. to receive Google Fiber. KC startups saw more than a half billion dollars in venture capital investment in 2017, nurturing successful entrepreneurial businesses from all stages.

Long aware of the vital role entrepreneurs play in sustained economic health, a variety of organizations in the Kansas City region continually work to create an environment in which up-and-coming businesses may grow and thrive. From this community emerged several successful companies including blooom, a financial services company now worth $1B, ZOLOZ, a digital security firm that recently exited from startup status to become part of the AliBaba family, and Machine Halo, a national leader in public safety technology development. Kansas City is home to C2FO who made the list of Forbes Fintech 50 for the second year in a row in 2016.

The KC region has an ecosystem that includes multiple entities that partner with and support tech startups through grants, pitch competitions, and partnerships with large firms in ongoing work. 1 Million Cups, a nationally recognized think tank pioneered in KC and created by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, provides entrepreneurs the opportunity to present to a diverse audience of mentors, advisors and fellow entrepreneurs. Coworking juggernaut WeWork has called downtown KC home since 2017—even before cities like Pittsburgh and Phoenix. Large firms like Cisco, Black and Veatch and H&R Block have acquired startups from this community to increase the pace of innovation in their firms. It's easy to tap into this willing network of innovation and grow.

The Kansas City region is the ideal location to launch your big idea. View additional resources, explore KC’s entrepreneurial assets and momentum, and find out how the Kansas City's own Kauffman Foundation supports entrepreneurship.

Telecommunications

KC is well known for our telecom infrastructure and industry leadership. Technology is rapidly growing and the world needs better, faster, and more widespread networks to keep up. KC has the companies needed to design and build the communications networks and technology infrastructure needed to ignite growth and innovation. KC-based Black & Veatch was ranked the No. 1 telecommunications business by Engineering News-Record (ENR) for the seventh year in 2018. Burns & McDonnell was ranked 8th best on the same ENR telecommunications list and climbing, which is no surprise given their 2018 announcement of a $42 million expansion of the KC headquarters that will make way for 1,200 new jobs.

With more than 34,000 people are employed by telecom companies and related operations in the Kansas City area, telecommunications has become an integral part of KC’s thriving economy and job growth. While major corporations such as Sprint—headquartered in KC—have helped to establish the city as a telecommunications authority, the new presence of Google and similar companies have helped KC to maintain its position. Other major KC employers in the field are AT&T Corp.CenturyLink, Inc.Birch Communications and Ericsson.

KC has deep telecom roots dating back to the 1890’s when Almon Strowger invented the revolutionary automatic telephone switch that bypassed human operators. Many more telecom innovations have come from KC companies since, but there have been major developments over the past decade. In 2011, Kansas City became the nation’s first Gigabit Region thanks to Google Fiber’s symmetric gigabit Internet services and their competitor’s efforts to match Google’s capacity.

In 2014, KC became a Cisco Smart + Connected City, making it more livable through intelligent infrastructure networking. Fast forward to 2018 and Amazon Web Services is leveraging this innovative and connected environment to build out its first AWS Smart Region. With over 5.5 million miles of fiber deployed KC is the most connected region in the U.S. and provides businesses and residents maintain a robust connectivity anywhere. The backbone of future technological advancement rests on the increase of intelligent telecom infrastructure—KC is ready to lead the way.

*Click above to expand for more information

Workforce of the Future

One in every 10 workers in Kansas City is employed by the tech industry. There are 3,876 tech companies in our region, from nimble start-ups to global enterprises. The Kansas City Area Development Council works closely with the KC Tech Council to attract, retain and grow of technology companies and highly skilled tech talent. Human capital is one of the key drivers of economic competitiveness. The Kansas City region recognizes the importance of redefining the workforce of the future through education and attraction.

Already, more than 30,000 high school students are engaged in STEM programming through Project Lead The Way (a third of the entire metro high school enrollment). Of the 41 districts in the region, 29 have formal accelerated programming in STEM courses, and many of those inform and credential students for education and career pathways after high school. In the last four years, they also increased the number of K-5 STEM students from 120 to 32,141 regionally, while certifying more than 400 K-12 teachers in engineering, computer science and biomedicine.

KC offers a deep pool of talent in tech, with 2,000 annually receiving bachelor’s degrees or higher in computer science fields from regional universities and colleges while the surrounding six states offers an additional 6,000 computer science grads. Non-traditional coding programs in the KC region also provide more talent bandwidth: Disruption Institute, Girl Develop It Kansas City, Girls Who Code KC, and Kansas City Coder Dojo. Training leader General Assembly is also running a pilot program in Kansas City, its smallest market ever. In the KC region, 16% of all 4-year degrees awarded are in architecture and engineering, compared to only 5% of all degrees nationally.

Across the country, areas are experiencing brain drain or brain gain. The Kansas City area attracted significant tech talent in the past five years—adding 11,040 tech jobs between 2012 and 2017—putting us in the “gain” column. With this influx, we’re outpacing much larger cities like Chicago (by twofold), Denver, Seattle, and New York City.

While the Kansas City metro population 25-years and older has increased 9.6% in the past 10 years, the population of highly educated individuals has grown at a much faster rate, 29.0%. Moreover, the educated foreign-born population in the Kansas City region has grown 53.4% (+13,518) in the past 10 years.

*Click below to expand for occupational data

Labor Snapshot


Title

2017 Employment

KC Concentration Compared to National Average

2017 Median Wage

Computer and Information
Systems Managers

3,730

142%

$123,290

Computer Systems Analysts

6,690

158%

$84,100

Information Security Analysts

1,260

175%

$78,810

Computer Programmers

2,920

145%

$76,850

Software Developers,
Applications

8,330

141%

$91,470

Software Developers,
Systems Software

3,230

106%

$96,680

Web Developers

920

96%

$56,210

Database Administrators

1,130

134%

$81,630

Network and Computer
Systems Administrators

4,460

159%

$77,200

Computer Network Architects

1,960

168%

$90,610

Computer User Support
Specialists

7,600

170%

$47,130

Electrical Engineers

2,330

171%

$89,970




Jill-BusDevContactJILL McCARTHY
Senior Executive | Corporate Attraction
816.374.5636


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