What Does Amazon HQ2 Mean For Tech Jobs in Washington, D.C.?

Posted by Charles Poladian  /  September 18, 2019

A lot has happened since Amazon announced HQ2 will be coming to National Landing in Northern Virginia. Since November 2018, more details about the number of jobs being created and the headquarters itself have been revealed. With that, we’ve also learned more about tech jobs in the area and it’s good news for anyone looking to become a software engineer in Washington, D.C.


Whether you call it Crystal City, National Landing, or Arlington, Amazon has arrived. The first phase of the Amazon HQ2 campus will be in Metropolitan Park. The tech giant plans on turning two existing warehouses into “new LEED Gold-certified buildings, new retail space for area businesses, and plenty of open space for the community to enjoy,” according to Amazon.

That’s just the beginning of their plans as they continue to expand in Northern Virginia. The Metropolitan Park campus will feature 2.1 million square feet of office space, 500,000 square feet of retail space, and 1.1 acres of public green space. Amazon estimates it will directly create 25,000 jobs over the next decade and HQ2 will indirectly lead to the creation of 53,000 jobs.

Amazon is already hiring for its new headquarters. There are open roles for software engineers, systems engineers, and front-end developers and the tech giant expects to create at least 400 new jobs this year alone.

But, where will Amazon find that tech talent? The easy answer is Washington, D.C., according to Axios. While the area could become the “it” place for tech, smaller companies and startups may feel the squeeze as top talent get lured away to HQ2. “Startups are worried that Amazon will lure away the talent because they can pay so much more," Jonathan Aberman, dean of Marymount's School of Business and Technology, is quoted as saying in Axios.

Of course, that’s just one side of the story. Washington, D.C., has a burgeoning tech scene with 312 startups listed in the Inc. 5000 list of fastest growing private companies in America. As these startups continue to grow, they’ll need tech talent. Urgently, ranked 12th overall, grew 11,633% year-over-year. Homesnap (38), TalEx (50), Associated Veterans (67), SydanTech (78), and Capitol Bridge (91) were among the top 100 fast growing startups in the nation.

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One way to satisfy this demand is by hiring coding bootcamp grads. Education alternatives like Flatiron School provide students with the hard and soft skills they need to succeed as data scientists and software engineers in Washington, D.C. in a condensed period of time. That means you can capitalize on this demand for tech talent in the area. 

Amazon is an incredible opportunity, but so are all the other dynamic startups in D.C. and Arlington. At the end of the day, the real winners are the talented pool of tech talent who can take advantage of this moment.

We encourage anyone who’s interested in joining the tech industry in Washington, D.C. to try our free Coding Bootcamp Prep to see if you enjoy code—and if a career as a software engineer might be right for you. You can also learn more about our Washington, D.C. campus here or attend one of our free events to familiarize yourself with our community.