Atlanta: Winning the Race for Millennial Talent


Kate Atwood

Kate Atwood, Executive Director, ChooseATL

Home to 5.7 million people and rapidly growing, with its vibrant culture and many fast-growing industries, Atlanta is a hotbed for individuals and companies alike. According to Thumbtack, Atlanta was ranked the sixth best metro for employment, labor and hiring for 2016. However, as competition for talent grows among new and emerging cities, the ability to sustain this competitive advantage will increasingly rely on the depth and quality of the region’s talent pool. This means we must work diligently to attract and retain Millennials who will comprise 75 percent of the workforce by 2025.

This next generation of workers want it all. They’re seeking collaborative workplace cultures, challenging careers, and most importantly – they’re looking for more than a paycheck. They want to be entrenched in the culture of a city. And they want to be part of a place that allows them to not only better themselves, but they truly want to make a positive impact on the city they call home.

Therefore, cultivating and promoting our region’s culture and our vibrant industries is no small task. But, with the help of today’s Atlantans and initiatives like ChooseATL, we’re setting ourselves up to have a flourishing workforce of the future.

Atlanta’s Workforce: Preparing for the Jobs of the Future

There’s no doubt that technology is a driving force in the future of the job market. The World Economic Forum even predicts that there will be 2 million new job titles and roles by 2020 due to technological advances. Think about it – titles like ‘UI/UX designer,’ ‘social media community manager’ and ‘Uber driver’ didn’t exist 10 years ago. So, in the next 10 years, predicts we’ll see titles emerge like ‘drone manager’ and ‘human technology integration specialist.’

This is exactly the kind of innovation and entrepreneurial environment that Millennials are attracted to. In fact, 54% of Millennials either want to start a business or have already started one. With over 1,000 startups, Atlanta is a thriving and supportive startup hub for aspiring Millennial entrepreneurs.

Thanks to our growing export and global economy, our local employers are also looking for a diverse and inclusive workforce that can help them connect with customers around the world. And with more than 70 colleges and universities and over 275,000 students enrolled annually (and growing), there is a steadily growing pipeline of highly-skilled talent right here in Georgia.

Georgia Tech graduates the most women and minorities in engineering in the U.S., while Georgia State University has partnerships in 59 countries and hosts nearly 1,600 students from 117 countries each year. Local alternative education programs like General Assembly and the Iron Yard are also providing the technical classes and programs that professionals need to learn new skills as fast as innovation mandates.

With this talent pool right in our own backyard, the challenge then becomes keeping them here after graduation, while also attracting other brilliant minds to the city. Last year alone the city of Atlanta added approximately 70,000 new jobs, making it the 8th fastest city for job growth in the country. And that’s where our city’s culture comes into play.

Atlanta’s Culture: Offering Unlimited Opportunity

Unlike previous generations, Millennials are attracted to a city for more reasons that just employment opportunities. They flock to cities that satisfy their cravings for vibrant music scenes, the latest food spots, the arts and philanthropy – all of which are abundant in Atlanta.

The city has more than 300 recording studios, over 60 live music venues including 529, the Drunken Unicorn, the Masquerade and Terminal West and is home to 30 annual music festivals. It is also noted as one of the nation’s top food scenes with restaurants like Staplehouse, which was not only named Bon Appetit’s Number One Best New Restaurant in America in 2016, but is changing the hospitality industry through its nonprofit, The Giving Kitchen. This philanthropic spirit is immensely appealing to Millennials since 75 percent of Gen Y’ers believe it’s important for a company give back to society instead of just making a profit. Further, 84% of Millennials gave a charitable donation of their own in 2014 and desire to live in communities where they can make their mark. With approximately 7,500 nonprofits in the metro area alone, Atlanta offers this 9/11 Generation no limits.

Ultimately, through the collision of our industries, Millennials no longer have to compromise on what they want in their life. Instead, they can have the best of both worlds by choosing Atlanta to call home.

Atlanta’s Additional Secret Sauce: ChooseATL

Gone are the days of “if you build it, they will come.” To be a top competitive metro for talent, we must be intentional about bringing our story to the world. This makes the presence of the innovative economic development platform, ChooseATL paramount in this generational workforce shift. This platform, which launched last year, shows exactly how a city can set itself up for success in this new era of talent competitiveness and economic development by sharing stories and creating experiences that highlight our region’s unique opportunity to help Millennials achieve more for themselves, as well as do more for others.

Most recently, this fall, we launched the second annual Ultimate Job Interview Contest to provide college students and recent graduates across the U.S. a unique opportunity to experience Atlanta in a fun and exciting way. Three finalists will have interviews with senior-level executives, experience a VIP tour of Atlanta and have the opportunity to win a $10,000 grand prize.

We received over 135 entries from students and recent graduates that showcase why they want to make their mark in Atlanta. You can help determine our semifinalists by voting for your favorites here. The contest will air on WSB-TV at the end of January. If you are interested in becoming more involved with ChooseATL or the contest, visit

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Georgia FinTech Companies Converge for MONEY20/20

ATLANTA (Oct. 24, 2016) – Hundreds of representatives from Georgia’s FinTech industry have made the pilgrimage to Las Vegas to attend this year’s annual Money20/20. Here at the show floor, Georgia is well represented as a national capital of FinTech. Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Atlanta E3 Awards Showcases Atlanta Business Leaders Promoting Regional Economy and Environment

Where the economy and environment connect for everyone

Atlanta E3 AwardsThe Metro Atlanta Chamber (MAC) announced the winners of the 2016 Atlanta E3 Awards, showcasing business achievement and innovation, clean technologies, and sustainability solutions that enhance our economy and environment. In its fourth year, the Atlanta E3 Awards promotes synergies between economic development and the environment, which is an attractive benefit for local residents, as well as those looking to relocate to the metro region. Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Three Reasons Why Atlanta is Ripe for Exporters

Zaheer Faruqi

Zaheer Faruqi

By Zaheer Faruqi, Aventure Aviation

Over the past decade, Atlanta has climbed to 64th from 71st amongst the Top 100 United States metros for exports. In fact, export businesses can now be found in every single metro Atlanta county and more than 80 percent of Georgia’s 159 counties. Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

GSMA Mobility Live! to host world-class industry leaders for Atlanta conference program

The GSMA and the Metro Atlanta Chamber (MAC) announced the next round of speakers for ‘GSMA Mobility Live! – North America’ conference being held in Atlanta, Nov. 1-2, 2016. Merging the previously separate ‘Mobile 360 – North America’ and ‘Mobility LIVE!’ events, the new event collaboration will bring together leading mobile industry innovators with more event features.

The combined event will offer a dynamic platform to explore the key trends impacting the mobile industry as well as highlight innovation and new developments impacting areas such as digital commerce, FinTech, security, connected living, and more. With the theme of “Transforming the Connected Lifestyle,” the two-day conference will bring rich content to a vast array of key leaders and mobile influencers.

Confirmed speakers for ‘GSMA Mobility Live! – North America’ to date include:

  • Steve Cannon, CEO, AMB Group
  • Jared Miller, CTO, AMB Sports and Entertainment
  • Daphne Gottschalk, Head of Innovation Program, Amdocs
  • Andy Peart, CMO and CSO, Artificial Solutions
  • Cameron Coursey, VP, Product Development, AT&T
  • Glenn Lurie, President and CEO, AT&T Mobility and Consumer Operations, AT&T
  • Mike Zeto, Executive Director, AT&T Smart Cities, AT&T
  • Kevin Wade, Director, Solutions Marketing, Blue Planet, Ciena
  • Arvind Satyam, MD, Global Business Development, Smart+Connected Communities, Cisco
  • Chris Dennis, Global Product Strategy, Freestyle, The Coca-Cola Company
  • Steve Robb, SVP, Security Marketing and Product Strategy, ControlScan
  • Mike Burgiss, VP Strategy, Mobility, Cox Automotive
  • John Dwyer, President, Cricket Wireless
  • Sabina Saksena, Founder and CEO, CytiLife
  • Radhika Subramanian, CEO, Emcien Corporation
  • Jane Schachtel, Global Head of Technology and Telco Strategy, Facebook
  • Jessica Rosenworcel, Commissioner, FCC
  • Andy Davies, Senior Director, IoT Solutions, Flex
  • Dr. Natasha Tamaskar, VP and Head of Cloud and Mobile Strategy and Ecosystem, GENBAND
  • Yoav Schreiber, COO and Business Development, GlassBox
  • Bruce Snell, Cybersecurity and Privacy Director, Intel Security
  • Bill Keen, VP, Mobile Solutions, Digital Guest Experience and Applied Discovery, Intercontinental Hotels Group
  • Don A. Bailey, Founder, Lab Mouse Security
  • Dori Gurwitz, VP New Business, LISNR
  • Hala Moddelmog, President and CEO, Metro Atlanta Chamber
  • Nirav Desai, Principal Healthcare Strategist, Mobiquity
  • Joel Evans, Co-Founder, VP Cloud and Mobile Transformation, Mobiquity
  • Rajiv Dholakia, VP Products and Business Development, Nok Nok Labs
  • Kwame Johnson, Executive Director, PowerMyLearning
  • Mary Clark, CMO, Syniverse
  • Eitan Cohen, CEO and Co-Founder, TechSee Augmented Vision
  • Hannu Verkasalo, CEO and Founder, Verto Analytics
  • Noah Wasmer, SVP, Mobile Products, VMware
  • June Sugiyama, Director, Vodafone Foundation Americas
  • Todd McGuire, Chief Strategy Officer, Worldpay

The GSMA has hosted an annual North America event in Atlanta as part of its Mobile 360 Series since 2014, bringing together leading executives from across the mobile industry, including operators, vendors and internet companies.

The 2015 Mobility Live! conference, managed by the Metro Atlanta Chamber, included more than 1,000 attendees and featured a keynote session from Apple’s Senior Vice President for Internet Software and Services Eddy Cue in a fireside chat with AT&T Mobility President and CEO Glenn Lurie.

Visit the GSMA Mobility Live!  website for more information, including how to attend, exhibit or sponsor the conference. Follow the latest updates on Twitter, using the #MobilityLive hashtag or following @MobilityLive and @GSMA.


Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Five metro Atlanta companies compete for $35,000 in grants

Patrick Adcock

Patrick Adcock

By Patrick Adcock

The 2016 Atlanta Metro Export Challenge announced their top five finalists Aug. 20 as part of the JPMorgan Chase-powered Atlanta Metro Export Plan (MEP) grant program designed to help small and medium-sized businesses begin or expand their exporting programs. Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

ChooseATL After 5 Showcases Metro Atlanta to Interns

Alexis Everett, James Hicks, Lukas Pilgrim, Alexander Shim, Patrick Adcock, Sarah Shoup. Photo courtesy of Akshay Gopalakrishnan

Alexis Everett, James Hicks, Lukas Pilgrim, Alexander Shim, Patrick Adcock, Sarah Shoup. Photo courtesy of Akshay Gopalakrishnan

ChooseATL, a regional campaign focused on attracting and retaining millennials to metro Atlanta, in partnership with Intern Navigator, a platform for employers to share internship, Co-op, and entry-level job postings with 35 colleges and universities across the metro region, recently launched ChooseATL After 5 to provide Atlanta-based interns insight on the region’s culture and unmatched quality of life. Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Georgia Research Alliance Showcases Georgia Ingenuity

By Amanda Schroeder, Director, Public Relations, Georgia Research Alliance

Amanda Schroeder, Director, Public Relations, Georgia Research Alliance

Amanda Schroeder, Director, Public Relations, Georgia Research Alliance

If someone asked you to name something that’s been invented in Georgia – besides Coca-Cola – what would you say?

The Georgia Research Alliance is giving the city and state’s leadership 25 answers to that question. As part of its silver anniversary year, GRA has been rolling out “25 Breakthroughs in Georgia,” a series of short write-ups about the most notable inventions and discoveries that have emerged from the state’s universities. Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Trends and Technology Driving Innovation in the Health IT Industry

By John Bardis, Founder and Chairman Emeritus of MedAssets

John Bardis, Founder and Chairman Emeritus of MedAssets

John Bardis, Founder and Chairman Emeritus of MedAssets

The Health IT Leadership Summit opens on Nov. 3, marking the sixth year of this signature event spotlighting the health IT industry in Georgia.

Created in 2010 by the Georgia Department of Economic Development, the Metro Atlanta Chamber and the Technology Association of Georgia’s Health Society, the Health IT Leadership Summit brings together leaders from across the healthcare continuum to discuss how the industry can drive innovation to enable better healthcare delivery at lower costs to more people. Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Growing Impact of Cybersecurity: Lessons Learned from Israel

By Pamela Dubin, founder, CyberUP

Pamela Dubin, founder, CyberUP

Pamela Dubin, founder, CyberUP

Last spring, I joined Alan Boehme, CIO, CTO of The Coca-Cola Co., as well as Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed and 33 business leaders for a crash course on the cybersecurity ecosystem in Israel.  Organized by Conexx: America Israel Business Connector, the state of Georgia and Metro Atlanta Chamber, we had incredible access to the world’s leading cybersecurity experts.  Conexx is a non-profit organization creating opportunities for Israeli businesses in the U.S. and for American businesses in Israel. With a powerful member-driven network, Conexx provides businesses with access to ground breaking technologies, companies and partners in the Southeast, Israel and beyond. Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment