Jumpstart Your Career in Raleigh

Raleigh, North Carolina

As college graduates enter the workforce, they often seek the perfect location that will serve as a hub for youth, energy and opportunity. Researching potential career destinations is a great idea for any aspiring leader. The city of Raleigh offers a research park that is home to more than 170 global companies. Cisco, GlaxoSmithKline, IBM, Lenovo, Nortel and Verizon are expected to add local jobs and will continue to make the area “a magnet for high-tech and biotech job creation,” reports Kiplinger.

For starters, Raleigh is the home of North Carolina State University. The city is also so close to Chapel Hill and Durham, homes of the University of North Carolina and Duke, respectively, that the three cities are part of a “combined statistical area” — adjacent metropolitan areas that are connected by commuting ties, according to the U.S. Office of Management and Budget.

Raleigh, Chapel Hill and Durham are part of the Research Triangle, known nationwide as a center for high technology and education and is the home of 170 global companies. The cities are also home to the three best universities in the state — North Carolina State, the University of North Carolina and Duke, respectively. Duke, based in Durham, is one of the best private universities in the South, while North Carolina’s public college system is one of the nation’s best state systems. All three schools have graduate school programs that you can attend after you have jumpstarted your career.

Raleigh is such a great place to jumpstart your career that it was ranked as one of the 10 “best cities in America for small business” by The Business Journals and was one of eight cities cited for its excellent job growth by Kiplinger, which publishes about 850,000 business publications each month.

A Great City For Small Businesses

The Business Journals ranks Raleigh as the fourth best city for small business and ranks Durham sixth.

The rankings were based on the number of small businesses per 1,000 residents, the small business growth rate, one-year growth rates for small businesses and private-sector employment, and five-year rates for population and employment. Raleigh has 24.91 small businesses per 1,000 people and annual private sector job growth of 2.34 percent. Durham has 22.56 small businesses per 1,000 people and annual private sector job growth of 3.21 percent.

The Business Journals specified why Raleigh is a great city for small businesses and, such a great place to jumpstart your career:

  • The city’s $600,000 loan fund for small businesses in the community.
  • The city’s innovation and entrepreneur manager being a “liaison between the community and the city.”
  • City officials helping small businesses reduce expenses substantially by pairing them together in the same office and finding them space at the universities’ small business incubators.
  • More than half of Raleigh’s families earning more than $50,000 annually.
  • About 22 percent of Raleigh’s employees working for the fast-growing and often lucrative educational services and health-care industries.

A Great City For Jobs Growth

Kiplinger notes Raleigh is one of eight cities that “we think are poised to become job-creating machines in the years ahead,” projecting 7 percent job growth by 2017.
The Raleigh area will outperform most other metropolitan areas because it has a strong private and public sector. In the public sector, Kiplinger projects that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s regional office, the state government, and the area’s major universities will add the most jobs.

The area’s boom has had one negative effect — it has created a shortage of affordable housing, according to the Raleigh Public Record. The city helps fund about 13,000 affordable housing units.

Looking for housing in Raleigh is a really good idea because the city’s job growth, business climate, educational facilities, quality of life, and responsive government make it a great place to jumpstart your career.