New Mexico enjoys a strong and growing back office sector comprised primarily of customer service, technical support, order taking, claims processing, bilingual customer support, accounts payable, and mail processing. The state is home to more than two dozen customer service centers statewide, with some of the largest U.S. consumer companies represented: Comcast, Gap Inc., Fidelity Investments, and Hewlett-Packard.
An aggressive workforce development program, bilingual workforce, and competitive wages make the state a prime destination for centers of all types and skill needs. A strong broadband network, competitive electric prices, and proximity to the nation’s fastest growing states also contribute to the growth of the industry here.
The Spanish-speaking population of the state, according to the 2013 one-year American Community Survey estimates, was 28.7%. Population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau in 2013 show that nearly one-half of the state’s population is Hispanic and about 10.35% are Native American, resulting in an available bilingual workforce throughout the state. Additionally, spouses and partners of military personnel stationed at Kirtland, Cannon, and Holloman Air Force Bases provide a skilled, dependable workforce, many of whom are bilingual, fluent in languages such as German, Spanish, and Italian. Rural areas of the state, where many customer service centers are located, offer substantial workforce cost savings.
New Mexico has been recognized for having the most productive workforce in the U.S. The 2014 State New Economy Index ranked New Mexico 1st for manufacturing value added per production hour worked, and attributed the performance to business friendly policies and the low cost of doing business in the state.
New Mexico’s Job Training Incentive Program (JTIP) has been recognized as one of the best in the nation (ranked 5th by Business Facilities magazine in 2014). The Program has an over 40 year history of assisting businesses with on-the-job and customized workforce training and has supported the creation of more than 43,000 jobs. JTIP assists economic base companies that are expanding or locating in New Mexico by reimbursing 50% to 75% of trainee wages in newly-created positions for up to 6 months.
Postsecondary institutions can be found throughout the state.
According to the Tax Foundation, New Mexico has the lowest property tax in the nation. Real estate prices are also very competitive. Wide area telephone and private communications services are exempted from the state’s gross receipts tax and many incentives are available for businesses creating new jobs. New Mexico is a net exporter of electricity and rates are competitive. On average, New Mexico electric rates were about 7.3% lower than the national average in 2014.