Despite Texas being all the buzz when it comes to business, the state received some peculiar rankings in this year’s Top States for Business study from CNBC.
Texas was ranked the fifth best state in the country for business but the second worst to live, and received an “F” in the life, health, and inclusion category, according to the team behind the CNBC study.
The team found that skilled workers are running into “quality of life” (QoL) issues after settling in Texas, citing supposed “limited childcare options, a stressed health care system with the highest rate of uninsured, new curbs on voting rights, and few protections against discrimination.”
Dietrich von Biedenfeld, a business professor at the University of Houston – Downtown, was not surprised by the study’s results, saying QoL factors like health care and paid time off are on the top of Gen Z’s and Millennials’ minds when it comes to choosing a place to work.
This is supported by a Deloitte Global 2022 Gen Z and Millennial Survey, which found Gen Zs and millennials to be deeply concerned about personal, social, and workplace balance.
“They struggle with financial concerns while trying to invest in environmentally sustainable choices. They feel burned out, but many are taking on second jobs while pushing for more purposeful – and more flexible work,” the survey noted. Census data show that Texas ranked third for net migration of college-educated workers.
“Everybody has their own way of doing research, and I completely disagree with that,” said Texan Eric Fuentas of CNBC’s annual study. “If you want to live in a state that has everything, Texas is your state,” he said.
With job openings outpacing employers’ ability to fill the positions, it will be up to hiring companies to add various QoL-related lures to attract skilled workers.
While Texas was hit with some tough rankings this year, those living in Mississippi might have it worse.
CNBC’s study ranked Mississippi last in its “Top States For Business” survey. While Mississippi outranks all other states in the lowest cost of living, the state’s workforce is statistically the nation’s “least productive” based on economic output per job. It also has the lowest concentration of science, technology, engineering, and math professionals.
In a tweet dismissing CNBC’s ranking as “nonsense,” Glenn Hamer, CEO of the Texas Association of Business, went on to say that Texas is among the fastest-growing states in the country, and is “winning the competition for jobs and people.”
CNBC’s study assessed states in 10 categories: Workforce, Infrastructure, Cost of Doing Business, Economy, Life-Health-Inclusion, Technology & Innovation, Business Friendliness, Education, Access To Capital, and Cost of Living. According to the survey, the “Workforce” category received extra weight due to labor shortages nationwide.