In the past few years Silicon Valley tech companies have picked up their skirts and high-tailed it to Utah. With a relatively low cost of living, a highly educated population and an incredible outdoors scene, Utah has become a prime location for new tech companies to park their supercomputers. That means it’s a great place for those of the digital persuasion to get a well-paying new job (which you can find here).
With some help from our friends at the Department of Workforce Services (thanks for the data, guys!), we put together a list of the five most in-demand tech jobs in Utah. The salary data is taken from the 2017 National Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Median wage in Utah: $66,490
Median wage in United States: $74,110
Anybody who wants a website built from scratch needs a web developer. Your 7-year-old niece who runs a pet snake business from her parents’ living room? She needs a website where she can sell her ball pythons if she wants to stay relevant.
Web development can be split up into three categories: front-end, back-end and full stack. We’ll focus more on front-end web developers, who are responsible for creating a website’s user-facing code. They work closely with the client or project manager to ensure the site meets all expectations. They will also be responsible for maintenance and updating the site throughout its lifecycle. Staying abreast of current and emerging technologies is essential.
- Part designer and part coder, front-end web developers have an eye for graphic design and a knack for technical details
- Building a website for a client requires strong written and oral communication. You must be able to tell clients how bad their design ideas are without getting fired.
- Web developers often work as independent contractors from home and must have impeccable time management skills
Applicants should have a few years of hands-on experience. A bachelor's degree in computer science or graphic design is also preferable, but companies will prioritize skills and experience over formal education. Many devs are self-taught these days.
Browse web developer jobs here.
Median wage in Utah: $82,900
Median wage in United States: $92,740
What exactly does a Computer Systems Analyst do? Well — ummm — how much time do you have? They analyze everything about a network, find the messed-up parts, then suggest solutions. If your network is the Force, they sense disturbances and then send Luke Skywalker to blow up the Death Star.
Systems Analysts determine how a computer system will work the most efficiently to achieve goals of the business. They research emerging technology and determine if it will improve the existing system. They conduct testing and analysis to evaluate the system, and they troubleshoot, and they make peace with the fact that by the time the system is upgraded it will already be obsolete.
- Comfortable with a lightsaber and lifting things with your mind
- Recognize problems and develop solutions
- Familiarity with compatibility-testing software, database-management software, program-testing software and more
- Critical thinking and ability to analyze complex information. Kind of like Keanu Reeves in "Speed."
A bachelor's degree in computer science or other related field is generally required.
View systems analyst jobs here.
Median wage in Utah: $80,740
Median wage in United States: $86,340
Computer systems don't magically run themselves. Not yet anyway. Somebody needs to step in when the network goes down for five minutes and pandemonium ensues. Somebody needs to keep all that hardware and software working together in beautiful harmony until the Singularity when robots become sentient and decide our time is up.
Admins develop, create and implement networks to meet the needs of the company. They’re responsible for day-to-day operation of LAN networks, WAN networks and intranets. They install and maintain computer hardware and software. They troubleshoot network problems and then blame the Computer Systems Analyst.
- Analyze and improve existing networks
- Intimate knowledge of computers and all their parts (gross!)
- Explain technical information about the network using simple words non-techies with tiny brains can understand
- Familiarity with database management–system software, network-monitoring software, program-testing software
Bachelor's degree in computer or information science. A degree in computer engineering or electrical engineering can work too. Sometimes a master’s degree is required.
View system administrator jobs here.
Median wage in Utah: $50,650
Median wage in United States: $54,150
Many more people use computers than actually know how they work. Like doctors, I.T. Specialists take an oath to relieve the pain and suffering of the non-tech masses. Also known as the nurses of the tech world, they administer to the frustrated and the verklempt. They can reboot systems and retrieve deleted data like angels straight from heaven (or the cloud?). They diagnose and (help you) fix problems. In their spare time, they enjoy fixing problematic LAN and WAN networks. Bless you I.T. specialists, bless you.
- I.T. Specialists should be patient listeners and enjoy helping people. Period.
- Be able to give specific and accurate instruction in person or over the phone.
- Know when it's time to bash the computer in with a sledgehammer
- Solve complex problems through critical thinking and analysis
- Familiarity with desktop communications software, database user interface and query software, and web platform development software.
Find I.T. jobs here.
Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with a specialization in Computer Information Systems. Hands-on experience can be gained through internships and employment.
Median Wage in Utah: $96,790
Median wage in United States $106,710
Application developers create and implement software that allows users to complete tasks.
Developers often have the duty of creating, maintaining and implementing the source code that makes up the application or program. Developers are capable of great things. There was one named Neo, for instance, who stumbled upon a BIG secret: We are all living in a computer-simulated world called the Matrix and our real bodies are sitting in jello getting harvested by the government! Yeah. It’s crazy. And you know who made the Matrix? Probably another developer.
- Computer programming for a variety of purposes (duh!)
- Familiarity with database management system software, program testing software and web platform development software
- Able to stop bullets with bare hands
- Fluency in multiple computer languages
Bachelor's degree in computer science or other related fields. Masters degrees are required for some positions.
View software developer jobs here.
As Morpheus once said, “I’m trying to free your mind Neo. But I can only show you the door. You’re the one that has to walk through it.” Wise words from a guy who likes pills. For more insights on what it’s like to work in the tech world, check out this survey from Stack Overflow.
And if you did not find the job on our list, check out the Silicon Slopes tech job board. There you will find a whole new world of positions to apply for. It will be as though you’ve been living in a simulated world and then you wake up for the first time.