Great Minds Converge on Springfield Region’s Growing IT Industry
For World Wide Technology Asynchrony Labs, which specializes in software and enterprise architecture for the world’s leading Fortune 500 companies, opening an office in the heart of the IDEA Commons District in Springfield, MO “allows us to tap into a well of creativity and opportunity,” according to VP and General Manager Bob Elfenbaum.
Asynchrony is just one of many organizations discovering the Springfield Region’s emergence as an IT hub, driven by an abundance of knowledge workers and start-up friendly environment — spurring a 65.9% jump in IT jobs over the past decade.
Springfield also boasts the nation’s largest chapter of the Association of Information Technology Professionals, with more than 200 members and counting.
What’s drawing so many professionals to pursue IT careers in the Queen City and surrounding Ozarks region?
It could be city leadership’s embrace of digital technology for improving public services. Perhaps it’s the enthusiastic support for research and development. Maybe it’s the innovative implementation of information technology by organizations across a number of industries.
Or it might just be all of the above – and much more.
The Queen City Becomes the Digital City
The embrace of digital technology really begins at City Hall.
In 2015, the Center for Digital Government ranked Springfield at #6 on its list of Digital Cities with a population of 125,000 to 249,999. The rankings assess a community’s use of information technologies to enhance public service delivery.
- Springfield wins praise in mobile technology, particularly for enhancing building development, utilities, water quality, and law enforcement.
- Mobile tools facilitate remote on-campus access to in-the-field water assessment mapping technology.
- The city’s building development services department has been able to eliminate paper plans. For instance, Avolve’s Project Dox software lets developers submit electronic building plans for approval.
- The Springfield Police Department derives a number of benefits from digital systems, including records management, standardized reporting, and quick communication with medical professionals.
- Springfield also wins digital kudos for its plans for employee cyber security training and digital document management.
Research & Development
The city’s willingness to introduce innovative technology has spurred advances in entrepreneurship as well. For example, new things are always happening at IDEA Commons, Missouri State University’s 88-acre urban research park in center city and home to a growing number of innovation-minded businesses.
- The Commons is anchored by the Jordan Valley Innovation Center, where the likes of Lockheed-Martin, Unidym/Arrowhead Research, Brewer Science, and more conduct R&D activities to guide the development of new products. Areas of focus include nanotechnology, carbon-based electronics, biomaterials, and biomedical instruments.
- IDEA Commons is also home to The eFactory, Missouri State’s tech-focused entrepreneurship center, offering a plethora of services to nurture the startup and growth of new businesses. Emerging business leaders can sign up for a 12-week intensive accelerator program developed to assist new tech companies.
Information Technology Drives Multiple Springfield-Area Industries
Innovation has taken root in many of the area’s legacy business sectors as well. Technology may not be what comes to mind when you’re looking for auto parts, but Springfield-based O’Reilly Auto Parts has a different take.
The company employs a diverse team of digital experts, who maintain a robust integration of IT systems that keep the entire supply chain operating efficiently and deliver the products and services customers need.
Superior technology deployment is a key to success in today’s fast-paced economy, and Springfield-area companies are leading the way across a number of industries – from software development, managed services, and website solutions to industry-specific implementations.
- Jack Henry & Associates – banking software and technology
- IntrinsiQ Specialty Solutions – healthcare software
- Intuitive Web Solutions – insurance software
- BKD, LLP – accounting
- Bass Pro Shops Headquarters – retail
- O’Reilly Auto Parts – retail
- Chase Card Services – financial
- And many, many more.
From homegrown startups to opportunities for great minds from around the world, the Springfield Region looks to continue its leading role in mapping the way to our digital future.
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