CLEVELAND, Ohio — When it comes to pursuing a career, post graduation, it can be challenging landing your first job. According to a new LinkedIn report, Ohio is a good place to start.

What You Need To Know

  • LinkedIn's Workforce Report names the top 15 cities to launch your career

  • Cleveland came in at number 3, Cincinnati ranked number 4 and Columbus came in at number 9

  • Experts expect Ohio's job market to drastically change, post-pandemic

"It's a smaller city, but you have a lot of great amenities, we have a world class orchestra, art museum, world class health care," said Ashley Basile Oeken, president of Engage! Cleveland.

It took years for Cleveland to transform into the city it is today. Its bustling downtown offers a nationally-recognized food scene, a beloved performing arts district, professional sports teams and a place for young professionals to thrive.

"You can make a big impact, you can become a part of the city by joining non-profits boards like I've done, you can join social clubs, and you can afford to do it, you can afford to have a car in the city, you can afford to travel, it's a great place where you can have a good balance of life," said Matthew Jones, a young professional living and working in Cleveland.

LinkedIn's Workforce Report named the top 15 cities to launch your career. Cleveland came in at number three, Cincinnati ranked number four and Columbus came in at number nine. Ohio was the only state to have every major city included in the report.

The cities were chosen based on affordable rent, good starting salaries and available opportunities.

"They each offer their own unique kind of thing, Columbus is one of the fastest growing cities in the Midwest, so Columbus has its job opportunities, but they tend to be in government, in retail. Cleveland has its own set of things that have a lot of opportunities. If you're interested in certain kinds of manufacturing or its own finance and banking industries, Cincinnati has some classic multinationals that are there, such as Kroger and Proctor and Gamble," said Mark Partridge, Ph.D., professor, School of Economics, The Ohio State University.

Partridge says before COVID-19 hit, each city was often overlooked by graduates, leaving a lot of opportunities for outside job seekers. He expects the job market in Ohio to drastically change, post- pandemic.

"It might take at least, maybe up to three years before it finally recovers to where we were, it's going to take some time, because unfortunately, we just can't go back and snap our fingers. Young graduates are going to have to be patient in terms of their job search strategy and they're probably going to have to start with maybe not with the job they thought they were going to get."

In Cleveland, community engagement organization Engage! Cleveland, says job opportunities will depend on the industry, but whether it's Cleveland, Columbus or Cincinnati, it's the low cost of living and competitive wages that will ultimately play a huge role in the state's comeback.

"Compensation is still number one, so lot of times people say oh, compensation doesn't matter to young professionals. It still does— people want to make a living wage, life-work balance, people want to make enough money to be able to enjoy the lifestyle that they want to have," said Oeken.