nullOn the Right Track

Iowa has the lowest growth rate of any state in the Untied States since 1900. This slow population growth has created an acute talent problem for economic growth as the labor shortage inhibits attraction and expansion opportunities.

The Iowa Chamber Alliance moved Talent Attraction to the top of our priority agenda in 2019 and in 2022 created the annual Talent Poll to better understand Iowa’s strengths and weaknesses. Iowa needs to find new people willing to move to the state by first

understanding what working age Iowans find attractive about living here.

The majority of Iowans continue to believe that Iowa is on the right track overall, however 2023 did see an 11 point decrease compared to 2022. 

Living In Iowa 

Overall, Iowans believed that the experience of living in Iowa is superior to most other states. While the majority also believe they can achieve long-term career and life goals in Iowa, it is by a smaller margin. Iowa continues to have a low unemployment rate and numerous job opportunities, and has been consistently ranked nationally as one of the best places to live. To attract a new workforce, Iowa needs to better market our strengths.

Most notably, in 2023 65% of respondents agreed that Iowa is less expensive then most other states compared to 43% in 2022. 


Top Priorities 

When respondents read multiple messaging statements about living and working in Iowa, they strongly agreed with the ones that were about the experience of the state, which had to do with things like safety, the people, and cost of living. There was less agreement (though still agreement overall) on the statements pertaining to achieving career and life goals in Iowa. To attract new Iowans, we need to show that they can enjoy the state’s low cost of living, friendly people, and safety, without giving up on a successful career and thriving social life.



Over half of Iowans polled believe that property taxes on individuals are too high, especially among rural Iowans. Consistent with these findings, lowering taxes was one of the top three overall priorities from respondents.


Professional Opportunities

Iowans are dissatisfied with Iowa’s entertainment and career opportunities, with 39% of respondents believing that Iowa has inferior career opportunities compared to other states, an increase since 2022. 

Career Opportunities - 


Entertainment Opportunities - 


2023 Full Results 

2022 Full Results