Five of the Best Cities in America for Business Success

September 10, 2014 | Jennifer Goodwyn

Although the federal unemployment rate is slowly creeping downward, some cities have been weathering the storm quite nicely. Every year, Forbes puts together a list of the top cities in America for job seekers using data released by Manpower, one of the largest staffing firms in the country. Manpower asks three simple questions: are you planning to hire, to fire, or keep your payroll the same. Using that info, along with data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Census Bureau, these are the best places in America to find career success as reported by

Washington D.C

The federal government is a major employer in our nation's capital city, as well as George Washington University and Georgetown. For those interested in a career in health, Washington Hospital Center and the National Children's Hospital are both located in the city. Although the cost of living is a bit higher in Washington D.C than some other cities on the list, the median income is higher as well.  Healthcare and government aside, top companies to work for include Comcast and Carfax.

Fort Worth

With a median income of $28,600 and an average monthly homeowner's cost of just $1,400, Fort Worth, Texas is a great place for unemployed professionals to start their job search. Additionally, it's a great place for entrepreneurs and small business owners to get their start. Located just thirty miles west of Dallas, the largest employers in Fort Worth are American Airlines and Lockheed Martin. As with some other cities on the list, this Texas city's rank is aided by its affordability and comparatively low rent.  


Although Atlanta is one of Forbes' top places to lose jobs over the past five years, the outlook is strong. With a metro population exceeding 5.5 million and a projected economic growth of 4.5 percent a year, employment in the Georgian capital is expected to increase 2.9 percent annually through 2016. Popular companies based in the city range from Delta Airlines and Holiday Inn to The Coca-Cola Company. With a low cost of living, convenient transportation, available tech hubs and a diverse talent pool, Atlanta has quickly come to be an attractive place for entrepreneurs to launch their business.


The city of Houston, Texas is considered to be the nation's fourth largest economy, and is expected to grow at the third fastest rate of the next three years. While Houston housing prices continue to increase, the city is still among the nation's most affordable major metro areas in the country. Oil and gas are responsible for 50% of the jobs related to the export of goods and services, so if you have experience in the sectors, Houston may be a good place to look.

San Francisco

San Francisco is the perfect place for the well-educated to experience business success – 50 percent of the population has a college diploma and 20 percent have a graduate's degree. While the city boasts the highest median home prices in the country, job growth has been exceptional and is expected to keep growing. Since San Francisco is located only 40 miles away from Silicon Valley, it's a great place for tech start-ups and entrepreneurs to launch their careers.