Key findings:

  • Massachusetts, California and Washington are the states with the best-prepared digital economies.
  • North-eastern states lead in terms of internet speed and broadband coverage — New Jersey, Connecticut and Maryland have at least as good connectivity as nearby New York and DC.
  • Utah, New Hampshire and Alaska score highly in terms of access to computers and the internet — places not considered tech hubs may also be well prepared for increased participation in the online economy.

Automation has been transforming the services sector, with counter operations and tasks such as billing and ordering happening without the need for human contact. Many people now book flights, reserve hotel rooms and rent cars at the click of a button; they can order anything online, from services to goods and educational material; they can use valet services for self storage, take virtual tours of homes for sale and pay rent online. The coronavirus pandemic has accelerated these trends, and, drawn in either by necessity or by convenience, more people than ever before are working in the digital economy, whether they be academics, businesspeople, sales personnel or even medical personnel as telemedicine becomes a thing.

Among the changes caused by the coronavirus pandemic, not being able to go out to work probably has the greatest impact. Some professionals, particularly those in the digital economy, can switch to working online, and other solutions to the problems are also technology-based. But how easily can digital economies adapt to the new situation, and which US states are best equipped to do this?

We wanted to evaluate which US states are best prepared to adapt to the changing situation, particularly regarding the new demands it is making on the employment market. We assessed 10 different factors to determine how well-placed each state is to deal with increasing numbers of people needing jobs in the digital economy. These categories of metrics are used:

  • How much a state invests in its technical sector and has seen it develop — including tech economic impact ($Bn), tech industry % out of GDP, tech job gains from 2010 to 2019, and share of people working in tech compared to total employment. This category is weighted at 50% of the total.
  • Internet connectivity across a state — internet speed, broadband coverage and what percentage of the population use the internet. This category is weighted at 30% of the total.
  • The population of a state’s access to computers and the proportion of its households with internet subscriptions. This category is weighted at 20% of the total.

Massachusetts, Washington and California Have the Best-Prepared Digital Economies

According to our research, Massachusetts, California and Washington take the top 3 positions as the best states for working in the changing digital economy, showing consistently high scores for many of the factors we considered, particularly with regard to their investment in and support of the technology sector.

Map of US with States Ranked by Digital Economy Preparedness

New Jersey and Maryland fill out the top 5, and states such as New York, Colorado and Virginia are not far behind. These places offer good internet connectivity and well-developed technological industries, including strong investment and skilled workforces, making their digital economies better prepared to face the major disruptions caused by the current pandemic.

As might have been expected, states that established and nurtured tech hubs have scored higher. However, it is also the case that some others prove to be well equipped for digital workers, more friendly to the digital economy,and they might be less expensive to live in. Utah, for example, presents the best of both worlds: it has an up-and-coming tech sector and widespread internet usage, plus an affordable housing market. The Beehive State lands ninth place on our overall list.

Minnesota, Georgia and Michigan are also considered to be states with notable tech sectors, and they all have relatively affordable housing markets compared to other tech-centric states. They all make the top 20.

At the other end of the spectrum, Mississippi, West Virginia and Montana prove to be states that are not so prepared for the changes in the digital economy, according to our criteria.

How the Pandemic Affects the Digital Economy

The current situation is revealing how easy or difficult people find working without close proximity to others, including their colleagues and their clients. And the increasing amount of work being done at a computer as part of the online economy has emphasized the need for good internet connections and other technical solutions. Some people may also need to create office conditions where they can do this, and in many parts of the country space is at a premium. The need for social distancing and the lockdowns that have been imposed have also had other consequences, such as an increasing use of new technology to replace meetings and business travel — the digital economy is certainly affected by the pandemic, but it has also been adapting to it rapidly. Diego Comin, Professor of Economics at Dartmouth College, says that the journey along the road to digitalization has been hastened by the outbreak.

COVID-19 is a great push for the adoption of digital technologies and the digitalization of production processes. Status quo bias, miscoordination, and uncertainty about the technology and the return to adopting it were three important deterrents for the diffusion of digital technologies. COVID-19 has evaporated them. Inaction is not an option in a crisis like this. COVID-19 is also a powerful coordination mechanism for all companies to move from the analog to the digital world. The viability of fully digitalized processes is now much more certain than the viability of analog processes.

Some parts of the country are better equipped to deal with the fallout of the pandemic than others. In many urban locations, broadband internet coverage is taken for granted, whereas in rural areas it may not be a feature. Indeed, although for some the idea of not having a computer is unthinkable, there are parts of the country where many people do not own one, severely restricting their possibilities for working in the internet economy. In West Virginia, Kentucky, New Mexico and several states in the Deep South, 15% to 20% of households don’t own a computer. Then there is the fact that certain parts of the country have attracted more technology companies over the years than others, and so are better places in which to find employment as an online worker — California’s Silicon Valley, Seattle and North Carolina’s Research Triangle are well-known examples.

Moreover, professor Comin says that in addition to local infrastructure and tech penetration, an important consideration is local businesses’ ability to digitalize the production of their goods or services.

What will vary significantly across states is the sectoral composition of their economies and this will impact very much on the potential for digitalization of production and consumption. For example, transportations hubs (e.g. Atlanta, Dallas) or sectors where tourism is key (e.g., Florida, Hawaii) will be impacted due to the inherent difficulties to digitalize the production and consumption of these services.

A study just released by Adobe indicates three categories are key drivers of the digital economy — grocery, electronics, and home and garden. As a result of the recent changes in people’s lifestyles, “electronics sales are up 58% online, with COVID-19 inflating electronics prices for the first time in years.” Additionally, “online grocery shopping in the U.S. has seen a 110% boost in daily online sales in April,” as was recently reported by Adobe in their 2020 Digital Economy Index.

Digital Economy Preparedness: How Each State Ranks for Tech, Internet & Infrastructure

To find out which US states’ digital economies are best prepared for the consequences of the coronavirus pandemic, we evaluated them using 10 different metrics of 3 different types. The first group concerns how a state rates regarding the extent to which its economy is based on technology industries and the number of people employed in them. The second group is concerned with internet provision in terms of usage, coverage and speed. The third group is concerned with actual access to computers and the internet. Let’s have a look at which states rank best when it comes to these three groups of evaluation criteria.

Technological Industry and Employment Metrics: California, Massachusetts & Washington State on Top

The possibilities for working online in a state that has well-developed technology industries are comparatively high. A good indicator of a state’s investment in technology is the proportion of its economy (GDP) that is derived from the technology sector. We also considered the number of net job gains in technology industries during the period 2010-1019 to be important, as this is an indicator of a state’s vitality in terms of offering technology jobs. The third metric used was the state’s total technology economic impact in billions of dollars. Lastly, we considered both the number of jobs in technology and the percentage of the workforce in technology.

The table above gives us a list of what might be termed The Usual Suspects. California, with its vast spread of technological industries in Silicon Valley, San Francisco and elsewhere, scores the number one spot. Massachusetts, coming in second, has MIT, one of the world’s most prestigious colleges, and all the local high-tech industry which that generates. Washington State, home to several well-known IT and media giants, ties in second place. Virginia, in fourth place, has the Dulles Technological Corridor, which has been dubbed “The Silicon Valley of the East.” In fifth place, meanwhile, the dynamism and economic stature of Texas hardly needs mentioning.

Regarding the percentage of the workforce in technology, Massachusetts, Washington, Virginia, Colorado, Maryland, District of Columbia, and New Hampshire all have more than 10% of their workforce employed in tech.

With vibrant technology industries, all these states offer higher-than-average opportunities for employment that can be done at online.

Internet Connectivity Metrics: New Jersey Scores Highest with Connecticut & New York in Second

Online workers appreciate the importance of a great internet connection better than anybody. For this reason, we evaluated states by their broadband coverage and the average speed of their internet connectivity, and we added a third metric for the percentage of the population who are active internet users.

As the table above shows, north-eastern states gain the top spots in terms of internet connectivity. New Jersey scores highest overall, and along with second-placed Connecticut boasts 99% broadband coverage. New York ties in second place and Massachusetts is not far behind in fourth. Near neighbors Maryland, Pennsylvania and Delaware also feature in the overall top 10, as do Rhode Island, New Hampshire and Illinois. Internet speed also tends to be excellent in these places, surpassing the US average of 36.1 mbps, but nowhere can match the phenomenal 73.4 mbps that residents of the District of Columbia enjoy.

Clearly, places like New York and DC — not to mention the surrounding areas where many of their workers live — back up their world-beating reputations with telecommunications that would allow many people to work online.

Tech Personal Availability Metrics: Washington, Utah & Colorado Beat the Rest

Some people may want to try changing their careers completely in order to get a job working online and so pay the bills. We evaluated states by what percentage of households had a computer and an internet subscription.

Combining these two metrics, there are some surprises. As might be expected, California, Massachusetts and New Jersey are all in the top 10, with Washington State in first place — Spokane and Tacoma residents are doubtless as media savvy as their Seattle neighbors. Third-placed Colorado is another state renowned for its IT, and Boulder and Colorado Springs are nearby and attractive alternatives to Denver and its high tech sector. But outdoor-loving Utah ties in first place, with Salt Lakers and residents of Logan, Ogden, Provo and Orem going online like those living in more traditionally tech-heavy states. New Hampshire in fourth and Alaska in fifth places, though they have their cities such as Manchester, Concord and Anchorage, complete the impression that rural regions are media savvy now.

There may be a good underlying reason why a large proportion of the residents in these less-densely-populated places have computers and the internet: the Gini coefficient, which measures inequality of wealth, recently ranked them in 3 out of the best 4 positions, meaning that even folk on lower incomes in those places may be able to work online.

The Most Technologically Well-Prepared US Metros

Some US metropolitan areas have been out in front for some time now, with their tech employment sectors far exceeding those of other places. It may therefore come as no surprise that San Jose, San Francisco and Seattle come out on top as the best large cities for tech in our ranking. Boston and Washington, DC, follow close behind, while Austin and Dallas prove the enduring viability of Texas cities, offering residents good opportunities in technological industries. Atlanta, Denver and San Diego complete the top 10, showing that their reputations for technical excellence are not to be dismissed.

In a rather surprising find, Detroit, which has not generally been regarded as a top hub for technology, emerges as the next highest hot spot for tech opportunities, scoring 11th place of our list. But Motor City has recently been making a switch from a financially troubled carmaker to a metropolis which is now hiring for technology jobs. Joining giants New York, Los Angeles and Chicago in our top 20 are other cities with well-known reputations for technology, namely Raleigh, Portland, Minneapolis, Phoenix, Baltimore and Salt Lake City.

Coping With the Pandemic

The pandemic has put unexpected demands on both people and technology, but fortunately it appears that in many respects the situation is manageable. Here are some pointers about difficulties that might be experienced down the line and how they can be resolved.

Need For Even Smarter Technology

When shelter-in-place and social distancing recommendations are implemented, many business practices that were common in the past become no longer possible. With business trips severely curtailed and many conference facilities and other such places closed, the void has been filled by virtual online meetings. Some people, however, complain that day dreaming becomes too prevalent and the lack of eye contact is a big loss. Well, the answer may be even more technology. Time reports on an increased interest in conferencing software that includes representing participants as holograms — an idea which, if it proves its worth during the coronavirus crisis, might be here to stay.

Dealing With Increased Internet Demand

With the internet even more important than ever in these changing times, there is an increased impact on telecommunications providers. CNBC has reported that the problem of increased internet usage is a worldwide issue, but providers are coping, for the moment. One consequence of having more people staying at home is the increased streaming of media, putting an even greater strain on the system — cutting picture quality to limit network congestion is one answer, and some providers are doing that. One thing should be clear as result of all this: the IT maintenance folk who keep the digital economy show on the road deserve something special when their birthdays come around.

Working From Home: Alright for Some but Not for Others

Working from home is one solution to the current situation, but not everybody can do it. In 2019, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that 29% of salaried employees said they would be able to do it. But this is much easier for some professions than for others, with the report naming the following industries as those with the highest percentages of people saying they could work from home: professional and business services (47.4%), financial services (46.7%) and information (45.1%). It reported that just 16% of those who worked from home at any time — the numbers also include people who worked at home only occasionally — said they did so because their jobs required it. That situation may now be changing.

A proportion of workers have been carrying out their business from home for some time, but in 2010, taking all types of occupation into consideration, only around 4.3% of the USA’s total workforce did it. By 2018, this trend had risen to 4.9% nationwide. Colorado was the state having the highest number, at 7.7%, with Vermont, Oregon and Montana following on — it would seem that the residents of Fort Collins, Montpelier, Salem and Billings may have known about the advantages of digital working for some time!

Some US states, however, have seen a much greater increase than others, with Delaware seeing the biggest jump between these years, of 55.7% from 12,863 to 21,633. North Carolina, Florida, Pennsylvania and the District of Columbia are next in the list and all experienced gains of over 30%.

Self Storage to the Rescue: Charleston & Texas Cities Have Most Space per Capita

Self storage offers solutions to a variety of problems and it can provide a buffer in times of uncertainty like the present. First, anyone acquiring office equipment such as computers, desks, cabinets and chairs so they can work online, may find themselves with spare stuff that had to make way for it. The good news is it can be moved to a self storage unit, for instance the popular 10×10 size, where it will be safe and accessible — a flexible solution to the problem. Self storage also helps people who relocate to an area where they can more easily find home working jobs — they can put their belongings temporarily and cheaply in a nearby unit until they have a new home they can move into.

The self storage industry has stayed up and running during the pandemic, and as the facilities don’t see intense traffic, social distancing recommendations can easily be observed there. As per Yardi Matrix data, some of the best cities for self storage are in Texas, with Austin self storage, Houston self storage, Dallas self storage and San Antonio self storage all offering more than 9 sq. ft. per capita, while self storage in Charleston, SC, offers more than 11 sq. ft. States on the south-eastern seaboard also provide plenty of opportunities, with both Charlotte, NC, self storage and Raleigh, NC, self storage offering more than 8 sq. ft. per person, while self storage in Atlanta, GA, amounts to just a fraction less. Also looking after residents in need of extra space are the Nashville, TN, self storage industry with more than 9 sq. ft. and the Orlando, FL, self storage industry with about 8.3 sq. ft. per capita.

What the Experts Say

The digital economy is a vast concept and many factors impact upon it, including an area’s preparedness to support online working and people’s willingness and capability to adapt to changes. Then there are always the more practical considerations such as whether an occupation can be carried out from someone’s home or an “online base.” As well as looking at data, we wanted to find out what experts make of the current situation, so we reached out to some esteemed professors to gain more insights on the evolution of the digital economy resulting from COVID-19.

Diego Comin, Professor of Economics at Dartmouth College

Diego Comin professor of economics at Dartmouth College
How can companies in the digital economy best respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, including making changes in working patterns?

Largely their ability is determined by three factors:

  1. how easy it is to digitalize the production of their goods or services;
  2. how easy it is to digitalize the consumption;
  3. how digitalized is the company prior to the pandemic.
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The first two factors are determined by the nature of the economic activity of the sector. The third (i.e., the degree of digitalization of the company) is given by the prior and current strategic choices of companies.

How do you think this situation will impact the digital economy in the future?

COVID-19 is a great push for the adoption of digital technologies and the digitalization of production processes. Status quo bias, miscoordination, and uncertainty about the technology and the return to adopting it were three important deterrents for the diffusion of digital technologies. COVID-19 has evaporated them. Inaction is not an option in a crisis like this. COVID-19 is also a powerful coordination mechanism for all companies to move from the analog to the digital world. The viability of fully digitalized processes is now much more certain than the viability of analog processes.

Which US states will be best able to respond to the growing demand for working in the digital economy on account of technological advantages they have built up?

I have studied much the diffusion of digital technologies across states, but what will vary significantly across states is the sectoral composition of their economies and this will impact very much on the potential for digitalization of production and consumption. For example, transportations hubs (e.g. Atlanta, Dallas) or sectors where tourism is key (e.g., Florida, Hawaii) will be impacted due to the inherent difficulties to digitalize the production and consumption of these services.

Uday Karmarkar, a UCLA “Distinguished Professor” and LA Times Chair in Technology and Strategy

Uday Karmarkar professor at UCLA
How can companies in the digital economy best respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, including making changes in working patterns?

The pandemic is giving a boost to telework and telecommuting across the board. Of course, this is not a big help for physical services and physical products, where restrictions on movement by both the workforce and customers have led to dramatic reductions in sales and productivity. But we have just a month more to go – the best predictions say that the infection and death rates from COVID-19 will hit zero for the US by early June, and some relaxation will come earlier. The hard part will be survival for those small businesses that have little in the way of financial buffers to cover their shutdowns. Now those firms in the digital economy that were also involved with digital service delivery, and did not depend on customer presence or physical access, are naturally doing better. Not surprisingly, Zoom, Netflix and Facebook are doing very well, while airlines, hotels and restaurants are not.

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How do you think this situation will impact the digital economy in the future?

It’s clearly going to give a boost to information intensive services and local delivery business. Personally, I have found that my local libraries’ digital collections are much simpler to search and access than the actual physical library, though I lose the fun of browsing the stacks. We may continue to order groceries online – that was already the case for a lot of household supplies. As an academic, on the positive side, I can attend meetings from home using online collaborative tools. On the negative side, online courses are both harder to teach and less appealing to students. Of course, the danger for academia is that students will begin to understand that online education is quite effective for many subjects and that the exorbitant fees charged by universities are going to be hard to sustain in the future, except perhaps for a couple of the best “brands”. But look for such effects across the board, as everything that can be digitized and put on-line, will be. It has already happened with music and banks and will quickly happen for all transactional, content and knowledge-based services.

Which US states will be best able to respond to the growing demand for working in the digital economy on account of technological advantages they have built up?

In the short term, recovery from COVID-19 is not especially related to the digital economy, since the most affected industry sectors are those that inherently have a lot of physical contact that cannot go online. Examples are – airplane travel, restaurants, hotels, entertainment events (gated mass entertainment), personal services (salons), in-store shopping and so on. The return to normalcy is going to depend on careful handling of policies – we can see that California is being conservative, while Georgia appears to be taking chances.

In the longer term, the movement to working in the digital economy has two parts. One is the location of companies that create tools that enable this kind of work. Those are somewhat concentrated in a few areas, including Silicon Valley, Seattle, Silicon Beach (Los Angeles), Houston (telecom), Boston, New York and so on. However, the shift to the digital economy for workers and consumers is much wider and more pervasive. There are indeed leaders and laggards, and again the high tech industry locations tend to be faster to pick up on the new modes of work. But the use of remote services is pervasive and not heavily regionalized. The differences are more generational (age related), by industry and urban/vs/rural rather than by geography. Consumers everywhere use smart phones apps, stream music and videos, do banking on phones, search online, order from Amazon and so on. Companies everywhere have been lagging in the degree of telework and telecommuting, except for those that have to do more of that simply because they are in many locations. As mergers and acquisitions increase, and as companies go cross-state to multiple locations, they necessarily have to do more working online. And finally, as mentioned before, the COVID-19 crisis has given a nudge to remote working, and that will hasten the process.

The end state is that online activity, ecommerce, telework, telehealth, telecommuting, mobile access, will all be everywhere. So will automation of checkouts, home delivery of most things, home automation, autonomous vehicles, the sharing economy, outsourced work, global delivery, remote collaboration (Microsoft is trying to get a jump on that one), and so on. It’s a matter of time and not place or state.

Obviously, these are opinions, but they are supported by research, and frankly by now, I think we can all see the writing on the wall (or the picture on the screen).

Chris Nebenzahl, Institutional Research Manager at Yardi Matrix

Chris Nebenzahl Institutional Research Manager at Yardi MatrixHow does the real estate industry use technology to adapt to the coronavirus situation?

Real estate overall is doing fairly well. Real estate has always been a very social and interactive industry, but it has changed quite quickly. On the operations side, you’re seeing a lot of companies across real estate sectors going to virtual tours, self-guided tours, handling all of the leasing online, many functions of property management are being done online.

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On the investment side, things are quiet for now, but a lot of the analysis and decision making can be done remotely on future deals.

Most of the financial markets, when you think of stocks and bonds, had been moving more to a digital platform over the years anyway. Fewer and fewer commodities and stock traders had been doing so on an exchange and more of those trades were being done electronically. Overall, the financial markets have transitioned quite smoothly to a digital platform as well.

How have cities driven by technology responded differently than other cities?

A market like San Jose and the Bay Area will do OK because a lot of their economies are built around tech, and many employees can work remotely. The interesting flipside of that is the venture capital for new tech firms and new start-ups. That venture capital will likely dry out, there will be less investment in new companies so in terms of growth, there may be less growth in the tech sector in Silicon Valley.

Miami has a very big leisure and hospitality sector; but more than that its real estate sector is driven off of international investment and specifically Latin American investment. In a time when it’s much more difficult to travel and tourism is severely impacted, Miami will most likely be hurt from that. Overall, we might expect a decline in transactions volume and investment, in Miami and in most cities across the US.

What are the differences in the ways the various sectors of the real estate industry adopt tech solutions?

In terms of real estate, the difference in the adoption of digital solutions is not state by state; it’s more of a discussion of the type of asset. For new class A multifamily properties is a lot easier to adopt tech because those owners are well capitalized and usually large; they have the resources to offer online payment platforms, online leasing, online touring, and so forth.

Same thing in office and industrial. Overall, I think industrial will do quite well because of the demand for last mile logistics, e-commerce, and the trends that we’re seeing with Amazon and UPS and everything being delivered.

Lee W. McKnight, Associate Professor, The School of Information Studies, Syracuse University

Lee W McKnight Associate Professor Syracuse UniversityHow do you think this situation will impact the digital economy in the future?

The future is upon us now; and it is about -more – than the digital economy: we need to be thinking of -cyber-physical- economies, and societies. Since those Amazon boxes you ordered (digital economy) did not ship (physical economy) themselves, nor deliver themselves (physically) to your home. So, what everyone is learning is that cyber (or digital) + physical = our reality. It was our economy and reality before the pandemic too, it was just not that obvious that the 2 are so intertwined; and co-dependent. Regions and communities, and companies and people, ready to manage and do business in our cyber-physical -economy- can be found everywhere; but they ALL depend on the digital networks and cloud resources usually thought of as part of the ‘digital economy.’ Well guess what: we all need to master – cyberphysical systems, also known as smart systems (aka smart cities) or the Internet of Things…but even that is not enough, since we humans are -physical- beings too, and the organization and regions best able to – serve our social and physical needs. and help us also be productive – whether in a physical office building, or in our (physical) home working remotely – win.

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Which US states will be best able to respond to the growing demand for working in the digital economy on account of technological advantages they have built up?

All 50 states have areas/regions that are reasonably well-prepared and already largely employed in the digital economy. What the Pandemic has laid bare is how stark are the contrasts in readiness between urban and suburban areas within states, which are already outfitted with the fiber, 4G and now in some cases 5G infrastructure required for fast access to data centers – where the cloud and cloud services like Zoom, Webex and even Netflix, live, powering the digital economy – and rural areas. In addition, inner city low-income neighborhoods are also badly underserved and not digital economy-ready. Since they either don’t even have the underlying infrastructure needed to access and work in the digital economy, or even if they do, many do not have the income or personal technology, education and training required. We tend to forget, but half the world’s population is not on the Internet yet.

Steven Tadelis, Professor of Economics, Sarin Chair in Leadership and Strategy, Haas School of Business, University of California, Berkeley

Steven Tadelis Professor of Economics University of California BerkeleyHow can companies in the digital economy best respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, including making changes in working patterns?

Creating an infrastructure for remote work is critical. Technologies such as zoom or Skype have proven to be quite effective for collaborative work. This is an opportunity also to deepen a company’s data driven culture by collecting and creating a host of KPIs that will give leadership a way to quickly identify opportunities and slack in order to optimize business operations.

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How do you think this situation will impact the digital economy in the future?

It’s clear that the current situation has shifted the attention to how much work and business transactions can be done remotely and this is one of main strengths of going digital. As a consequence, the current situation will accelerate innovation in the digital economy that supports remote interactions and activities that involve less human interaction.

Which US states will be best able to respond to the growing demand for working in the digital economy on account of technological advantages they have built up?

I am biased, but living in the heart of tech/digital innovation, California is a clear front runner. Just yesterday Google and Facebook communicated to their employees that they should expect to work remotely till the end of 2020. This can lead to a new normal where large parts of the workforce work remotely, where companies would save on real estate and utility costs. However, other companies can follow suit quickly, so it’s not clear that geography will make a big difference in which companies adapt to the new normal and leverage the digital economy.


Technical competency is certainly a big plus when having to move operations online – for convenience, due to a pandemic or simply to cut costs. And this is especially true when there is a greatly increasing number of people who want to work online. With a commitment to technology industries, and a large workforce employed in them, a state or city can better support people who cannot currently go to their regular workplace. In addition, the simple provision of good broadband coverage and fast internet speeds helps anybody who needs to do their work over the internet. Many of the places that best provide for such workers are the expected technology hubs, but there are also those that prove their worth in this regard despite lesser reputations. The world may look a little different after the coronavirus pandemic has passed, but the digital economy sector has been stepping up to the plate, managing the problems and providing new solutions.

Check out how your state is doing in terms of digital economy preparedness by browsing the table below:


This analysis was done by StorageCafe, an online platform that provides storage unit listings across the nation.

The data for the technological industry and employment metrics was obtained, with kind permission, from CompTIA. The data for internet availability comes from BroadBandNow and the numbers are from 2018. The numbers of internet users come from Internet World Stats. The numbers of households with a computer and with an internet subscription all come from US Census data and are from the period 2014-2018.

Bureau of Labor Statistics data about working from home is from the period 2017-18, and data about changes in working from home patterns was obtained from the US Census for the years 2010 to 2018. The Gini coefficients were derived from data obtained by the American Community Survey conducted by the US Census Bureau.

The metrics used in our evaluation are all weighted equally, at 10%. This means that the Technological Industry and Employment category has a total weight of 50% deriving from its 5 metrics, the Internet Connectivity category has a total weight of 30% deriving from its 3 metrics, and the Tech Availability/Infrastructure category has a total weight of 20% deriving from its 2 metrics.


Francis Chantree is a writer and editor for Yardi, focusing on real estate and lifestyle content. He is a former programmer and researcher who exchanged computer language for his greatest passion, human language! When not writing and proofreading text, he can be found gardening and reading.

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