Dive into the specifics of the best cities in the United States for Data Analysts to live and work in 2022, complete with key considerations for relocation such as job opportunities, average salaries, professional communities, cost of living, and educational opportunities. Discover how these factors can impact your career in data analytics, and where to turn for top-notch data analytics training and education.

Key Insights

  • Job opportunities for data analysts are currently on the rise, with notable growth in cities like Chicago, Illinois, Austin, Texas, and Orlando, Florida.
  • Top cities for data analyst salaries in 2022 are Santa Clara, California ($118,000), Bellevue, Washington ($98,000), and Oakland-Hayward, California ($96,000).
  • Atlanta, Georgia, and Austin, Texas, currently host strong data analyst communities, thanks to a variety of employment options in tech hubs and competitive wages.
  • The cost of living plays a significant role in city selection, with the highest cost of living states being Hawaii, California, New York, Oregon, and Massachusetts, and the most affordable states being Mississippi, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, and New Mexico.
  • Education opportunities are abundant in cities home to large colleges and universities with strong tech programs, such as Georgia Tech in Atlanta, the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago, and the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena.
  • The top five cities for data analyst pay rates are New York City ($76,000), Washington, D.C. ($75,000), Chicago, Illinois ($71,000), Atlanta, Georgia ($69,000), and Dallas, Texas ($68,000).

If you are interested in pursuing a career in data analytics, you may also be considering relocating for work. This article will take a look at some of the best cities in the United States for Data Analysts to live and work in 2022, as well as what makes a city a good match for those working with data.

What Makes a City Good for Data Analysts?

Each day, an estimated 2.5 quintillion bytes of data is created. To process some of this constant onslaught of information, Data Analysts are currently in-demand across the United States. However, not all cities provide the same opportunities for work in this field, and not all working conditions are equal from place to place.

For example, in the southern U.S., the job market is solid for those working in data analytics, though the pay rate is not as high as it is elsewhere in the country. Yet, the cost of living in most of the south is much lower than elsewhere in the U.S., which can help offset lower paychecks. On the other hand, the West Coast offers good job prospects for Data Analysts, especially in states such as California and Washington, which also boast some of the country’s highest pay rates for this profession. However, the cost of living on the West Coast is much higher than the national average. Therefore, when determining which cities are best for data analytics, factors beyond pay, such as quality of life and cost of living, are also essential considerations.

Job Opportunities

One of the major factors most people consider when relocating is what kinds of job opportunities the city can provide now and in the near future. The good news is that it is currently a job seeker’s market in many ways. Unemployment rates dropped to 3.6% in April 2022, which is nearly three percent lower than April 2021. This is spurring many to relocate to new cities to explore career options.

In 2022, Chicago, Illinois, and Austin, Texas, ranked as the top two cities for those searching for employment. They both offer steady job growth projections. Orlando, Florida, is another good option for Data Analysts, as this city experienced a 12.2% increase in jobs last year. In addition, McAllen, Texas, had the highest growth rate of wages last year (9.5%) but also had the highest rate of unemployment (9%).

High Salaries

Generally speaking, the pay rate for Data Analysts is currently high across the U.S. In 2022, the mean salary for a Data Analyst is approximately $80,000. While this number can vary depending on the analytic focus, the industry of employment, and the type of employer (large company vs. small startup), location plays a crucial role in determining the pay scale for Data Analysts.

The following metropolitan areas are among the highest-paying locations for those working in data analytics in 2022:

Strong Data Analyst Community

If you’re deciding whether to relocate to a new city to pursue a career in data analytics, another factor to consider is the professional community you’ll be joining. Cities with tech hubs, as well as those that offer a variety of types of employment (such as small businesses as well as large corporations), are appealing options because of the sheer diversity of employment available.

Currently, Atlanta, Georgia, ranks number one as the best tech hub in the U.S. Atlanta is home to a variety of large employers (such as Microsoft and Airbus), as well as dozens of startups in the tech industry. There are many professional opportunities in the Atlanta Tech Village, where many small companies work and collaborate. Because it also boasts competitive wages and a relatively low cost of living, it’s an excellent option for aspiring Data Analysts.

Austin, Texas, is second on the list for a city with an all-around great Data Analyst community. This city is not only home to many major tech companies, but it also has a rapidly expanding startup economy. Austin also has a low unemployment rate, along with high wages. More than 6,500 tech companies currently operate in Auston, such as eBay, Oracle, Apple, Adobe, and Amazon. This high concentration of tech industries helped give Austin the nickname “Silicon Hills.”

Cost of Living

Another critical factor in deciding where to live is the overall cost of living. In 2022, the five states with the highest cost of living are Hawaii, California, New York, Oregon, and Massachusetts. Even with competitive pay rates for Data Analysts in these locations, rent, food, and living expenses are much higher than elsewhere in the country. On the other hand, the five states where it is most affordable to live in 2022 are Mississippi, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, and New Mexico. Some aspiring Data Analysts are willing to make a bit less money in a state such as Mississippi because it’s much more affordable to live there than in a location such as New York City.

Educational Opportunities

Cities home to large colleges and universities with strong tech programs tend to appeal to those who work with big data. In addition to offering competitive professional opportunities, college cities and towns also have other desirable living factors, such as good dining options and relatively affordable rent. This is perhaps why some cities with the highest-paying jobs in data analytics also have reputable colleges or universities nearby. For example, Atlanta has Georgia Tech, Chicago has the Illinois Institute of Technology, and Pasadena is home to the California Institute of Technology.

Top Cities for Data Analysts

Based on current pay rates, the following five cities come out at the top of the list for jobs in data analytics:

  1. New York City is currently ranked as the number-one city to work as a Data Analyst. Those working in the Big Apple can expect a yearly pay rate of nearly $76,000.
  2. Washington, D.C. is the second-best city to be employed as a Data Analyst. Pay rates are $75,000 annually.
  3. Chicago, Illinois, ranks third in the U.S. for cities with the highest pay for Data Analysts. On average, those working in this field make $71,000 a year.
  4. Atlanta, Georgia, is fourth in Data Analyst pay rate in the U.S. Qualified individuals working there make a yearly salary of nearly $69,000.
  5. Dallas, Texas, rounds out the country’s top five highest-paying cities for Data Analysts. On average, Data Analysts working in Dallas make $68K annually.

Get Started Learning Data Analytics with Hands-On Classes

Data analytics is currently one of the most in-demand professions across the U.S. If you want to learn more about how to analyze and visualize data, Noble Desktop’s Python for Data Science Bootcamp is a great starting point. This intensive, 30-hour course covers fundamental Python skills that have applications for the data sciences, like an overview of the various data types and how to create data visualizations. Noble also offers an 18-hour SQL Bootcamp in which students learn how to filter data, write SQL queries, and gather insights from data.

For those looking to learn specifically about data analytics, courses such as the Data Analytics Certificate or Data Analytics Technologies Bootcamp are available in-person in NYC, as well as in the live online format. These rigorous learning options cover core data analysis tools like SQL, Excel, and Tableau, among others.

You can also look for live online and in-person data analytic courses close to home by using Noble’s Classes Near Me tool. Over 340 courses are currently listed by Noble and other top educational providers in topics like data analytics and data visualization.