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New York City Debuts Made In NY Digital Map Tool for Job Seekers

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You don't have to move all the way to North Dakota to find a boomtown full of job opportunities.

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MINYANVILLE ORIGINAL Today at Internet Week NY, Mayor Mike Bloomberg, along with the city's Chief Digital Officer Rachel Sterne and Internet Week Chairman David-Michael Davies, unveiled a online map to help job applicants find jobs in the city's many tech and digital media businesses.

The Made in New York Digital Map is a modified Google (GOOG) map that shows the location of tech companies in the city and whether they are hiring. Currently, the map lists over 500 companies and 324 of them say that they are hiring. In all, there are over one thousand opportunities for a variety of skill sets available in New York City. Businesses can register and get their locations plotted on the map.

"New York City is the place to be if you're a growing tech startup," said Mayor Bloomberg. "Our tech companies are looking for talent, and we want to make sure that everyone – no matter where they live today – knows about these jobs and is able to apply for them."Rachel Sterne and Mike Bloomberg introduce the Made In NY Map at Internet Week.

"Creative people want to be around other creative people, and creativity is driving the tech industry," he said.

Though the traditional hub of the local tech industry is the "Silicon Alley" in the Flatiron district of Manhattan between Union Square and Madison Square, Sterne stressed that this is more than just a tiny scene.

"This map shows that it isn't just Silicon Alley, but New York City," she said. The industry has expanded to various neighborhoods including DUMBO in downtown Brooklyn and Long Island City in Queens. Though startups are proliferating, big companies that got their start elsewhere, such as Facebook (FB), LinkedIn (LNKD), and Google, also have New York offices.

The precipitous increase in employment in the tech sector accompanies the decrease in available jobs in other fields. New York City is the traditional home to the financial services industry. Especially in the wake of the financial crisis, and after the recent flare-up at JPMorgan Chase (JPM), policymakers need to worry about the dropping payrolls at financial companies and the ripple effects that has on the local economy. The good news is that many financial professionals have the skills necessary to work in software engineering or sales and marketing for tech companies.

"I don't think that it's any secret that the financial sector is contracting," Mayor Bloomberg says. "All those people need jobs, and many of them are moving to technology companies."

Recently, a study from the Center for an Urban Future highlighted the New York tech industry's growth, which places it right behind Silicon Valley. One barrier to growth that it listed is the relatively shoddy broadband infrastructure in the city. The think tank noted that most tech companies in Manhattan complain of spotty connections and comparatively slower connection speeds.

"What is surprising is that New York - the world's media capital - could be behind the curve in having the bandwidth that the city's tech companies need," the report said.

"Bandwidth is one of the big, big constraints out there," John Borthwick of Betaworks said in the report. "It's really [spotty] and there is uneven accessibility to bandwidth. I know a lot of our companies complain about this. Even here [at Betworks' office in the Meatpacking District], we have FIOS (VZ) in the building, which is good. But we don't have a backup to it. Time Warner Cable doesn't pass the building, so there's no backup. And so if FIOS goes down, which is conceivable for a day, we're [stuck]. Hopefully it won't happen, but there should be redundancy to bandwidth."

Another issue is getting the highly skilled hardware and software engineers of the world to move to New York. Bloomberg disagrees that there is a dearth of engineers, but agrees that there are not enough. He hopes that the Technion and Cornell University campuses will bring more talented graduate students to the city. Another hurdle is the federal government's immigration policies; these policies sometimes make it hard for tech companies to hire the talent that they need. There are even times when foreign students wish to start businesses or work for companies in the US after graduating from an American school, but have to be turned away.

The mayor closed the press conference by encouraging would-be job applicants to look to New York, with the help of this map tool, to find employment. He added, "if you're coming from overseas, I hope you can get a visa, because the federal government is making it difficult."

The Made In NY Map Shows Techies Where To Work
Twitter: @vincent_trivett
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