As remote work becomes more prevalent globally, the loneliness epidemic associated with it might drive professionals to cities where in-person connections are easier to forge. This trend might also become more popular for new college graduates entering the workforce — as networking plays an important role in the early stages of a professional career.
LinkedIn’s latest report could help professionals decide where to go. The networking site recently published a data analysis of over three million LinkedIn members who relocated in 2021, with a specific focus on the first 12 months after settling into a new U.S. metro area.
The greater New York City area was revealed as the nation’s hotspot for networking opportunities. It’s reported that newcomers to the city added LinkedIn connections at a rate 11.1 times beyond the national average — surpassing all other major metros.
The San Francisco Bay Area ranks second, with newcomers to the city adding connections at 9.5 times the national rate. Salt Lake City ranked third with average connections made at 9.2 times the national average. Los Angeles was fourth with 8.7 times the national average, and Boston wrapped up the top 5 with newcomers reporting 8.6 times the national average.
Notably, the data also reveals that the youngest workforce cohort, Gen Z, shows the fastest connection rate — outpacing even millennials. This suggests that Gen Z professionals might prioritize in-person networking more than their more internet-prone predecessors.
Despite the persistence of remote work and hybrid work opportunities, the allure of major metro areas as major networking hubs is still prevalent in society. As the world continues to grapple with the challenges of remote work, cities that facilitate easy professional networking might see an influx of professionals seeking both career opportunities and personal connections.
Other top metros for networking include Chicago, Washington, D.C., Houston, Miami-Fort Lauderdale, and Dallas-Fort Worth.