Opportunity Overflows in Iowa

There’s nothing quite like living in Iowa. Residents can build a strong, successful career, thanks to the state’s slew of job opportunities, all while crafting a fun, flourishing lifestyle that meets their distinct tastes. Here’s just a glimpse of some of the advantages this state has to offer.

Job, Job, Jobs

Finding the perfect job is an easy feat when searching in Iowa.

The state is home to a number of diverse sectors, from advanced manufacturing and biosciences to education technology, and insurance and financial services.

Plus, several well-known companies can be found here, such as John Deere, Whirlpool, Pella Corp., Winnebago, Dotdash Meredith, Principal Financial, Collins Aerospace and HNI Corp.

Three people collaborating together on some work.

“The thing I love about HNI – regardless of where you’re at in your career – we have a path for you,” says Matthew Nicol, senior talent acquisition manager at HNI. “As we think about the various skill sets or verticals, we have engineering, we have supply chain, we have operational leadership roles, maintenance and skilled trades, HR, legal, environmental health and safety – sustainability is an emerging career – or someone can come in and build a career from the ground up on our production floor.”

And HNI is not in the minority when it comes to providing options. Jobs in several fields can be found in companies across Iowa. Higher Learning Technologies, a company that creates mobile studying solutions, is the perfect example of the entrepreneurial and education technology opportunities available in the state.

Work Perks

While landing a great job is key, many Iowa employers also offer amazing benefits. For example, some allow for hybrid or remote working positions so their employees can spend less of their workday commuting. These options are especially attractive to working parents who might need the extra time to drop their child off at school or run essential errands.

Also beneficial for working parents is Iowa’s new Child Care Business Incentive Grant Program. Launched in 2022, the grant aims to provide $25 million to build or expand child care throughout Iowa and support partnerships between employers and child care facilities.

Dr. Sarah Gingrich, who operates a dental practice in Dysart, knows firsthand the importance of child care to working parents. She and her husband rely on Little Knights Learning Center, which expanded with the assistance of an Iowa Child Care Challenge Grant.

“You hear (about) a shortage of people working,” Gingrich says. “Everyone’s short-staffed. Some of that’s child care. If there’s not affordable child care, that is going to affect the workforce.” To further help parents stay employed, Iowa became the first state back in January 2022 to create the “Best Place for Working Parents” designation, which recognizes employers that have family-friendly policies, including child care assistance.

Jefferson Telecom office
Jefferson Telecom, photo courtesy of Dan Meythaler

Examples of companies investing in child care include Vermeer, Pella Corp. and Jefferson Telecom. Affordable and convenient high-quality child care is essential for working parents, says Jamie Daubendiek, general manager of Jefferson Telecom. “The central piece for our employees is to have quality child care.”

Low Cost of Living, High Quality of Life

Speaking of affordability, living in Iowa will not burden one’s wallet.

According to U.S. News & World Report, Iowa ranks No. 4 among states when it comes to affordability, and it ranks No. 1 for opportunity when things like affordability, economic opportunity and equality are considered.

This lower cost of living is part of the reason residents can really thrive here, as it allows them to spend more of their money on things they desire.

Plus, the quality of life is superb.

“This is part of the reason why I moved back from Colorado with my family. The 10,000-foot overview is Iowa has a strong tie to family values. They have a strong sense of community,” Nicol says. “The school systems are great, and (there are) just great outdoor activities. There’s always something across the state that kind of brings the communities together in a fun, family-oriented sense. It’s awesome.”

Overhead shot a whirlpool corporation assembly line
Whirlpool Corporation

This story was developed for the 2023 ‘This is Iowa’ statewide guide published in partnership with Livability

Published April 6, 2023

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