A recent study published by the University of Maryland indicates that Facebook and mobile technology have generated at least 182,000 new jobs and $12.19 billion in wages and benefits. The study, which was released by the Robert H. Smith School of Business this morning, stated that more aggressive estimates indicate that the “Facebook App Economy” could be responsible for as many as 235,644 jobs and a $15.71 billion impact on the economy.
The research found that 53,000 of the jobs created were people directly employed by software companies that design Facebook apps. For example, Zynga, the popular social gaming company, has over 2,000 employees. This quickly growing company is worth an estimated $15 to $20 billion dollars and recently announced plans for an IPO. Zynga is one of the many companies that employs Flash, C++, PHP and Java programmers to program Facebook Apps.
In addition to direct employment, the Facebook App Economy created at least an additional 129,000 jobs related to supply and increased spending.
Il Horn Hann, co-director of the Smith School’s Center for Digital Innovation, Technology, and Strategy said the following:
“Our findings confirm that social media platforms have created a thriving new industry. As Facebook and other platforms grow, we will continue to see job growth and the ripple effects of these advances in the U.S. economy.”
In addition to Facebook app development, Facebook-related job growth has been propelled by the over 2.5 million websites and companies that are now integrated with Facebook. These companies are hiring web designers, social media consultants, and page managers.
Since Facebook launched in 2004, it has increased its staff by over 50% each year. The social media giant, which now has over 750 million users, directly employs over 2,000 workers.
The numbers posted in this Facebook-funded study were higher than expected.