Getting into the real world to hunt for employment opportunities can be a real challenge especially if you have just graduated. There are some cities you’d want to explore but the soaring housing costs of that city might scare you. And then there are places which seem very welcoming with their thriving job markets but really expensive. So, when you are picking a place for a new job, make sure you don’t just look at how far the place is or what kinds of jobs are available there.

Not sure how to find the perfect city to start your career? You needn’t worry about it cause that’s what we’re here for. We’ve done some research and digging for you to understand different aspects of some of the best and worst cities for job seekers. So you better keep reading to find out about what different cities have to offer you.


Best Cities For Job Seekers In U.S

  1. Houston
  2. San Francisco
  3. Indianapolis
  4. Austin
  5. Phoenix

Worst Cities For Job Seekers In U.S

  1. Fresno
  2. Bakersfield
  3. Bridgeport
  4. Fayetteville

Best Cities For Job Seekers In U.S

1. Houston

Moving to Houston

Houston or ‘The Space City’ as you may recognize it rests towards the southeast of Texas. It’s the fourth most populated city in the U.S with an area of 637.4 square miles and hence got it’s nickname. You will see a diverse economy here as the city is home to several health, energy, technology and management sectors. Because of a diverse economy, the Globalization and World Cities Study Group and Network recognized it as a global city. The best thing about living here is that the city has an unemployment rate of just 3.9% as stated by Best Places.

Let’s not forget the opportunities for technology and IT enthusiasts. The city is home to several centers for technology, namely Cybersoft, Houston Wire and Cable and HostGator. Houston also thrives in its energy industries with oil and natural gas being the economic bases of the city. To give you a rough estimate of the highest paying jobs, Zippia has determined healthcare, architects and engineers as some of the highest paying jobs. Anesthesiologists and Surgeons can expect an average salary of $249,420 and $226,090 in the city. If you’re an Architectural or Engineering Manager, you’re sure to earn as much as $186,970. No wonder that the city earned a spot in Forbes ‘Best Places for Business and Careers’ in 2013.

Advantages Of Moving To Houston:

The city has seen an increase of 3.2% for job markets in the past year. That’s not all, Houston does not charge you any Income Tax to live here (as per the data shared by Best Places).

Also Read: Relocating to Houston – A Complete Guide

Disadvantages Of Moving To Houston:

The average income of a person in Houston is lower than the U.S national average of $53,482 (as per the data shared by Best Places).

Population: 2,230,268

Median Home Value: $209,512

Median Home Rent: $1,116

Median Household Income: $49,399

Crime Rate (per 1000 residents): 11 for Violent Crime and 44.65 for Property Crime (More than the National Median of 4 and 21 respectively).


2. San Francisco

Moving to San Francisco

Known for its steep rolling hills and amazing architectures like the Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco resides in the state of California. The city is home to various renowned companies like Levi Strauss & Co., Fitbit, Reddit, Yelp and Twitter, etc. To add to that, the city is also known for the arts and cultural institutions like the University of California San Francisco (UCSF). As a matter of fact, the city’s GDP hit around $592 billion in the year 2019. To add to that, the city’s per capita income in 2019 was as much as $139,405.

With a diverse economy, the city has various finance, tourism, technology and business services. Speaking of the city’s economic base, let’s not forget the Wall Street of The West which is home to the headquarters of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco. To give you a rough estimate of the highest paying professions, Zippia has determined certain highest paying jobs in the city. Psychiatrists and Surgeons can expect an average salary of around $257,150 and $256,870. If you are a Computers or Information Systems Manager, you are sure to earn up to $201,960. Architectural and Engineering Managers can also earn big bucks up to $186,500. That’s not all, you will find many tech sectors and businesses in the Bay area of the city.

Advantages Of Moving To San Francisco:

The city has an unemployment rate of only 2.4% which is lower than the U.S national average of 3.7% (as per the data shared by Best Places).

See Also: Moving to San Francisco – Relocation Guide

Disadvantages Of Moving To San Francisco:

The cost of living in San Francisco is 169.3% higher than the U.S national average (as per the data shared by Best Places).

Population: 881,549

Median Home Value: $1,415,450

Median Home Rent: $2,901

Median Household Income: $78,378

Crime Rate (per 1000 residents): 6.91 for Violent Crime and 56.73 for Property Crime (More than the National Median of 4 and 21 respectively).


3. Indianapolis

Indianapolis Moving Companies

Known as ‘Crossroads of America’ or ‘Indy’, Indianapolis is the capital of the state of Indiana. The city is the anchor to various sectors such as finance and insurance, real estate, education, healthcare, manufacturing, trade and business services. No wonder the city’s GDP hit as much as $134 billion in 2015.

Talking about the city’s most prospering and prominent business, the Anthem Inc. and Elli Lily are the two important finance and pharmaceutical companies residing here. There’s also the Simon Property Group which is the largest real estate investment trust in the U.S. Also, the renowned Calumet Specialty Products Partners, Allison Transmission and Finish Line are three of the Fortune 1000 companies that call Indianapolis their home.

To give you an idea of the best paying jobs, Zippia has determined a few estimates for you. Psychiatrists, Obstetricians and Gynecologists can expect an average salary of around $264,400 and $252,330 in the city. If you are a Computer or Information Systems Manager, you can earn up to $135,780. Also, Sales and Financial Managers can earn as much as $134,310 and $133,200. The city has an unemployment rate of only 3.6% as stated by Best Places.

Advantages Of Moving To Indianapolis:

The cost of living in the city is almost 16.5% lower than the U.S national average (as per the data shared by Best Places).

Disadvantages Of Moving To Indianapolis:

Your Income Tax Rate in Indianapolis will be 4.9%, which is higher than the U.S national average of 4.6%.

Population: 876,384

Median Home Value: $174,876

Median Home Rent: $936

Median Household Income: $42,076

Crime Rate (per 1000 residents): 12.48 for Violent Crime and 38.23 for Property Crime (More than the National Median of 4 and 21 respectively).


4. Austin

Moving to Austin

The ‘City of the Violet Crown’ or Austin as you may recognize is the capital city of Texas. The city boasts itself in its diverse economy that comes from various sectors like business services, defense, pharmacy, music and technology. There has been a massive increase in the growth of technology industries in the metropolitan area of Austin. That’s the reason students across the world come to study engineering and computer science at the University of Texas which is located in Austin.

Let’s not forget to look at some prominent companies residing in Austin. A few Fortune 500 companies that reside here include Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) and Texas Instruments. No wonder the Globalization and World Cities Research Center recognized the city as ‘Beta’, meaning a global city. The best thing about the city is that it has had a growth in the job market of around 3.5% in the past year. Not just that, Austin’s future job growth estimate is around 47.0% which is way higher than the national average of 33.5% as stated by Best Places.

Advantages Of Moving To Austin:

The city has an unemployment rate of only 2.6% which is relatively lower than the U.S national average of 3.7% (as per the data shared by Best Places).

See Also: Relocating to Austin – Complete Guide | Top Cities for 20 Somethings

Disadvantages Of Moving To Austin:

Your Sales Tax Rate in Austin will be around 8.3% which is higher than the U.S national average of 7.3%.

Population: 978,908

Median Home Value: $482,766

Median Home Rent: $1,398

Median Household Income: $55,216

Crime Rate (per 1000 residents): 4.07 for Violent Crime and 38.29 for Property Crime (More than the National Median of 4 and 21 respectively).


5. Phoenix

Moving to Phoenix

The beautiful ‘Valley of the Sun’ or Phoenix as you know it, is the capital city of the state of Arizona. The Phoenix metropolitan area is very welcoming to young people who seek employment in various sectors. Speaking of some prominent businesses here, Avnet, Freeport-McMoRan and PetSmart are a few of the Fortune 500 companies that reside in Phoenix. That’s not all, the U-Haul International also has its headquarters in the city. Let’s not forget the unemployment rate in the city, which is 4.9% as stated by Best Places.

To give you an idea of the best paying jobs, Zippia has determined rough estimates of various professions in the city. Psychiatrists and Physicians can earn an average salary of around $273,570 and $229,320. Airpilots, Copilots and Flight Engineers can expect an average salary of $166,960. Even if you are an Architectural or an Engineering Manager, you can earn as much as $148,160. All of this makes Phoenix one of the best cities to start a new career.

Advantages Of Moving To Phoenix:

The city has had a growth in the job markets by 3.3% in the past year (as per the data shared by Best Places).

Related: Moving to Phoenix – Relocation Guide

Disadvantages Of Moving To Phoenix:

The cost of living in Phoenix is almost 3.7% higher than the U.S national average (as per the data shared by Best Places).

Population: 1,680,992

Median Home Value: $314,071

Median Home Rent: $1,218

Median Household Income: $46,881

Crime Rate (per 1000 residents): 7.02 for Violent Crime and 33.30 for Property Crime (More than the National Median of 4 and 21 respectively).


Worst Cities For Job Seekers In U.S

1. Fresno

Fresno resides in the southern part of California’s Central Valley. The city’s economy predominantly comes from the agricultural sector in the San Joaquin Valley. As you see, the agricultural sector is the base of the city’s economy and hence it’s far from being diverse. So there is very little scope for you to explore employment opportunities in other sectors. You can visit the place to enjoy various sports and arts activities at Woodward Park. But in terms of starting a career, this place has very little to offer.

Your cost of living in the city will be almost 2.6% higher than the U.S national average according to Best Places. The median home value in the city is around $247,600 which is higher than the U.S national average of $231,200 as stated by Best Places.

Advantages Of Moving To Fresno:

You can enjoy the recreational parks at the San Joaquin River.

Disadvantages Of Moving To Fresno:

The city has an unemployment rate of 6.5% which is way higher than the U.S national average of 3.7% (as per the data shared by Best Places).

Population: 542,012

Median Home Value: $247,600

Median Home Rent: $1,221

Median Household Income: $41,455

Crime Rate (per 1000 residents): 5.70 for Violent Crime and 33.74 for Property Crime (More than the National Median of 4 and 21 respectively).


2. Bakersfield

Bakersfield is located in the southern part of the San Joaquin Valley in the state of California. Talking about the economic base of the city, agriculture and energy sectors contribute to a great extent to the city’s economy. Apart from that, there are some natural gas, energy extraction mining and food processing industries that reside here. Just so you know, the city’s Kern County is the fourth most productive agricultural county in the city.

As mentioned earlier, the city has two predominant industries, oil and agriculture. That’s why the only leading companies that reside here are oil and agro based industries. To name a few, the city is home to companies like Grimmway Farms, Bolthouse Farms, etc. So, if you want to explore other opportunities in the field of technology, finance or business, there is very little scope for you here. The city’s recent job growth has been only by 1.2% according to Best Places.

Advantages Of Moving To Bakersfield:

You will enjoy the pleasant weather of the city especially in the months of October, April and May (as per the data shared by Best Places).

Disadvantages Of Moving To Bakersfield:

The city has an unemployment rate of 6.1% which is way higher than the U.S national average of 3.7% (as per the data shared by Best Places).

Population: 384,145

Median Home Value: $287,435

Median Home Rent: $1,131

Median Household Income: $56,842

Crime Rate (per 1000 residents): 4.65 for Violent Crime and 42.54 for Property Crime (More than the National Median of 4 and 21 respectively).


3. Bridgeport

Bridgeport city is located in the state of Connecticut. With a population of as many as 144,399 people, Bridgeport is one of the largest cities in the New England region. Talking about the economic assets of the city, healthcare, finance and education seem to be the dominant sectors here. To name a few, St. Vincent’s Medical Center and the University of Bridgeport are a few prominent centers here.

Just so you know, the future job growth estimated in the city is around 21.9% which is way lower than the U.S national average of 33.5%. Also, your income in the city will be as much as $20,442 a year which is lower than the U.S national average of $28,555 a year according to Best Places.

Advantages Of Moving To Bridgeport:

Your Sales Tax Rate in the city will be around 6.4% which is lower than the U.S national average of 7.3% (as per the data shared by Best Places).

Disadvantages Of Moving To Bridgeport:

The unemployment rate in the city is 5.3% which is higher than the U.S national average of 3.7% (as per the data shared by Best Places).

Population: 144,399

Median Home Value: $242,415

Median Home Rent: $1,075

Median Household Income: $41,204

Crime Rate (per 1000 residents): 5.84 for Violent Crime and 17.07 for Property Crime (More than the National Median of 4 and 21 respectively).


4. Fayetteville

Residing in Cumberland County, Fayetteville is a city located in the state of North Carolina. So far, there are two major sectors that contribute to the state’s economy. Home to Fort Bragg and Fort Field pump, the city’s economy also comes from the retail industry. Apart from that, the defense industry is prominent here with several organizations residing here to help develop defense solutions. So as you see, the city has limited job opportunities as retail and defense are so far the only two dominant sectors here.

The recent job growth in the city has only been 1.0% as per best places. Also, your average median income in the city will be around $23,843, which is lower than the U.S national average of $28,55 a year as stated by Best Places.

Advantages Of Moving To Fayetteville:

You can explore the economic base of the city which are Fort Bragg and Port Air Force Base (as per the data shared by Best Places).

Disadvantages Of Moving To Fayetteville:

The city has an unemployment rate of around 6.3% which is way higher than the U.S national average of 3.7% (as per the data shared by Best Places).

Population: 211,657

Median Home Value: $141,991

Median Home Rent: $820

Median Household Income: $44,514

Crime Rate (per 1000 residents): 8.69 for Violent Crime and 35.09 for Property Crime (More than the National Median of 4 and 21 respectively).


Final Thoughts

The cities mentioned above are ranked best and worst solely on the basis of certain parameters like unemployment rate, economic assets, job growth, cost of living and crime rate. But there’s no particular city that will best suit everyone. If you are more inclined towards the business or finance industry, you may want to look at cities that have a strong finance economic base. So make sure you look at all aspects before deciding up on one particular city. If you feel there’s any place that not just suits your career plans but also fits your other tastes, go ahead and plan your move.


FAQs

Which city has the most job opportunities?

Now this is difficult to answer as it depends on what kind of jobs you’re looking for. But if you’re into finance, business, technology or healthcare, following are the best cities for the best job opportunities in these fields:

  1. Houston
  2. San Francisco
  3. Indianapolis
  4. Austin
  5. Phoenix

What are the top 5 paying jobs in the U.S?

According to the U.S News, people engaged in the healthcare sector are the highest paid professionals in the U.S. Following are the top 5 paying jobs in the United States:

  1. Anaesthesiologist
  2. Surgeon
  3. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon
  4. Obstetrician and Gynaecologist
  5. Orthodontist

See Also: Top-rated Local Moving Companies in the America | Best Cities For Business Graduates To Move To