How will Apple expansion affect other Triangle companies?

Wake County News

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – There’s a demand for tech talent in the Triangle. That demand is heating up with the announcement of Apple’s newest campus in the Research Triangle Park.

Apple announced 3,000 jobs are expected to come to the market. The workers will have an average annual salary of about $185,000. Will that put pressure on current employers to pay higher wages?

Brooks Raiford, North Carolina Technology Association President, said it could. Raiford said people in this industry are already paid on the higher end, but the wages could get higher.

“North Carolina is already among the higher paying average wage for tech workers at well over $130,000,“ Raiford said.

“The average wage is already fairly high, and while certainly there will be some movement once somebody leaves one employer for another. That happens all the time and you want a community where there’s enough strong employers to provide opportunities for talented people.”

According to the North Carolina Technology Association IT Job Trend Report, there are 30,000 open tech positions in the state as of March. This creates competition to recruit talent and keep an existing workforce.

“It could be pretty immediate that companies will have to revisit what they’re paying, but it is important to note not for all the positions, but for positions that will be in competition for talent with the likes of the Apple announcement,” Raiford said.

The national average salary for the tech jobs is $152,000, per the IT job trend report. California is on the high end at nearly $200,000. North Carolina averages about $136,000 a year.

Visiting professor at Duke‘s Sanford School of Public Policy John Quinterno said Apple’s announcement comes with winners and losers. He points to the higher skill and higher-paying jobs as a win. He said it can also have an impact on existing businesses.

“Maybe it does make it a bit challenging for existing businesses to continue and recruit the right kinds of folks — especially in a field where skill shortages are not unusual so it does create a lot of different dynamics,” Quinterno said.

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