EMC to add 500 jobs in Utah

Utah officials say economic incentives, tax reductions helped convince EMC to open new customer support center there

EMC plans to create 500 new jobs in Utah by the end of 2015 to staff a new customer support center.

The storage vendor considered a number of states for the new support center but selected Utah because it met objectives regarding location, skilled workforce and infrastructure, an EMC spokeswoman said. EMC also considered the state's quality of life and cost of living, the spokeswoman added.

EMC already has an established presence in Utah through subsidiaries Mozy, an online backup service with offices in Pleasant Grove, and Iomega, a hard drive maker based in Roy.

EMC said the new Utah operation will support customers in North America, Latin American and South America.

EMC said it is still considering several locations in the state to house the new facility.

The company employs 48,500 people worldwide. EMC doesn't break out its U.S. headcount.

Utah Gov. Gary Herbert said EMC is spending $7 million on the project and is getting an approximately $3.5 million tax credit as part of 10-year agreement.

ITT, a high tech engineering and manufacturing firm, this month announced plans to create 2,700 new jobs in Utah over the next 15 years, while Oracle is building a large data center in the state.

Utah officials are attributing the recent moves to some business-friendly policy decisions, including a reduction of the corporate and personal income tax rates about two years ago, changes in regulatory rules, and a willingness to engage various industrial sectors in ongoing discussions about business needs.

The state's efforts are getting national attention.

The nonprofit Brookings Institution, in its quarterly economic development monitor released this week, cited the Salt Lake City and Ogden metro areas as two of the 20 strongest-performing regions in the U.S.

Separately, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce put Utah high on its list of states that have succeeded in expanding science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) jobs. Utah's STEM job growth rate between 2001 and 2010 was ranked ninth in the U.S., at 15.4%.

North Dakota topped the list with STEM job growth of 26.5%, followed by Wyoming at 24.2%, Nevada at 19.2%, Montana at 16.5%, Hawaii at 15.9%, Alaska at 15.6%, Virginia at 15.6% and New Mexico at 15.4%. The national STEM job growth rate was 2.3% during that period.

Patrick Thibodeau covers SaaS and enterprise applications, outsourcing, government IT policies, data centers and IT workforce issues for Computerworld. Follow Patrick on Twitter at @DCgov, or subscribe to Patrick's RSS feed . His email address is pthibodeau@computerworld.com.

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