MassTLC CEO Talks Tech with Beacon Hill Lawmakers

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MassTLC CEO Tom Hopcroft speaking to lawmakers during Tech Hub Caucus meeting at State House

With member companies employing more than 60% of the tech workforce in Massachusetts, MassTLC is the leading industry voice for the tech sector both on Beacon Hill and Capitol Hill.

Working in concert with our state counterpart, the Mass Tech Collaborative, MassTLC supports the Legislative Tech Hub Caucus and its mission to foster greater dialogue between lawmakers and tech leaders. Together we kicked off 2017 with a briefing hosted by Senator Karen Spilka at the State House with about 60 lawmakers and tech industry leaders in attendance. 

As the first speaker, I was able to help set the stage. I shared with the group the fact that the tech sector in MA accounts for about 300K jobs or 10% of our workforce. Add to that another 100K tech occupation jobs in other sectors like healthcare, life sciences, financial services, etc. Finally add in the indirect and induced jobs and tech underpins over 1/3 of all jobs in Massachusetts and close to half of the payroll. In four of the past five years, tech has added over 5K jobs per year and last year it added 12K jobs.

We are at an inflection point from a macro point of view. Industries that were previously siloed are today converging around the next generation of data analytics and the instrumentation and automation of the physical world. They are gaining intelligence where we never had it before – whether you call it the Fourth Industrial Age or the Third Wave, artificial intelligence and the instrumentation and automation of our physical world are game changers and play to the strengths of MA.

We like to say that in Massachusetts, we have data in our DNA. We have over four decades of leadership from the structured days of DEC to the big data leaders of today. This leadership is embedded in our workforce. We also have “things” in our DNA. Sensors, actuators, robots, etc. Massachusetts as the greatest concentration of tech manufacturing in the nation and a long history with sensors and robots. In fact, you can find evidence of our leadership in the fact that even the terms robot and internet of things (IoT) were coined here. Finally, as more things come online and data moves around, security comes to the forefront. That is why MassTLC was selected to lead Cyber Massachusetts, part of CyberUSA and the Massachusetts CyberSecurity Initiative.

We applaud the leadership of Tech Caucus Co-Chairs Senator Karen Spilka and Representative Ann Margaret Farrante, Tech Hub Policy Co-Chairs Donna Cupelo of Verizon and Chris Goode of EMC/Dell, the Mass Tech Collaborative, and Tech Net for their support in connecting lawmakers with industry leaders.