The 10 Best Tech Companies in Chicago to Kickstart Your Career

The city of Chicago is one of the largest tech hubs in the Midwest. In fact, it’s second only to Silicon Valley in terms of venture capital invested per capita.

Chicago has been a long-time home to major companies like Motorola and Abbott while attracting newer tech companies like Groupon and GrubHub.

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There is a lot of development going on in Chicago and it’s not just from the well-known tech companies (like Groupon, Orbitz and Careerbuilder) that have made their mark here.

A new crop of startups is emerging every year, and many are making a name for themselves on the national stage.

Chicago is where small business owners can find the best talent, support and investment in the region. The city’s tech scene has been growing steadily for years, with a record $7 billion invested in Chicago tech companies in 2021.

The city’s startup scene is supported by an army of accelerators, incubators, and co-working spaces that provide resources to help entrepreneurs get their businesses off the ground.

We’ve compiled a list of some of Chicago’s top tech companies to help you get started.


Read Also: The 10 Best Engineering Companies in Chicago


Top 10 Tech Companies in Chicago

The best tech companies in Chicago include ActiveCampaign, Avant, Aptitive, BigTime Software, Inc., Bento for Business, Black Spectacles, Bringg, and Cisco Meraki.

Chicago may not be the first city that comes to mind when you think of technology, but it’s certainly up there with some of the most innovative companies in the country like ActiveCampaign and Avant.

It may be surprising to learn that Chicago houses over 900 tech companies employing almost 37,000 people in total.

1. ActiveCampaign

Based in Chicago, Illinois, this email marketing provider has more than 100 employees and serves over 70,000 customers around the world.

They offer affordable pricing, advanced email marketing features and robust customer service to a diverse array of clients.

The company, which provides an AI-powered marketing automation platform, plans to use this new funding to accelerate global growth, invest more heavily in product innovation and expand its reach into new markets — all while scaling its team.

ActiveCampaign is an exceptional platform for small businesses as well as large enterprises.

Their powerful automation tools are perfect for increasing engagement with customers and upselling products or services.

2. Avant

Avant, which is based in Chicago, has had a surge in growth since its founding in 2012.

The company has more than doubled the number of employees and tripled the loan volume.

The company’s success can be attributed to its focus on people, rather than just profits.

They are constantly experimenting with new ways to provide customers with a better experience, and they always follow up on feedback.

It was one of the first lending companies to use big data to underwrite and price loans.

This made it possible for people who were turned down by traditional banks or wanted an alternative to credit cards as a way to borrow money at reasonable rates.

One thing that really sets Avant apart from other lending companies is their customer service.

Their customer service team is available 24/7, and they’re always happy to help with questions or concerns.

3. Aptitive

Aptitive is a Chicago-based data consulting company focused on providing solutions to our clients using data, analytics and the cloud.

They are a team of dedicated and passionate experts in the fields of data, engineering, business intelligence and analytics.

Aptitive works with companies of all types to make their way through the ever-changing landscape of data by providing scalable solutions.

They help companies connect their data to better understand their business and customers through reporting, visualization, machine learning, ETL/ELT pipelines, and more.

The company’s approach is simple: it listens to your needs, asks clarifying questions and provides honest feedback on the best path forward.

They strive to deliver first-class work that meets the needs of our clients now and in the future.

4. BigTime Software, Inc.

BigTime Software is one of the best tech companies in Chicago, creating project management and time & billing software for professional services firms.

They’re a growing, profitable company with big ambitions. They’re always looking for super-smart people to join their team.

It is a dynamic SaaS company that’s disrupting the professional services market with products that are innovative, easy to use and mobile-ready.

Their products help firms manage their people and projects more efficiently so they can increase billable hours, improve visibility into key business metrics and get paid faster.

The company’s culture is casual yet passionate about what they do, and it’s important to them that everyone who works here is happy and challenged – because top talent fuels their success.

The company hires smart, dedicated people who fit well with its team, offers them opportunities for growth in an entrepreneurial environment and gives them the tools they need to succeed.

5. Bento for Business

Bento is reimagining how organizations conduct business-to-business payments in the digital era.

Bentos’ financial operating platform enables organizations to issue physical and virtual payment credentials to individuals and systems while giving businesses unparalleled control and visibility over their B2B spending and corporate spend.

Open APIs and White Label agreements expand these control and management advantages to automate payments that go well beyond costs alone.

It is a cost management system for small and medium enterprises that uses Bento cards to automate payment processing tasks like billing, invoicing, reporting, and more.

6. Black Spectacles

Black Spectacles was founded by architect Marc Teer, AIA and his business partner, Brian Paletz, AIA.

Both Marc and Brian are licensed architects and have worked on a wide range of projects with some of the most well-known architects in the world.

The company has grown to over 60 people and has offices in Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York.

Black Spectacles has been recognized as one of Chicago’s Best Places to Work by Built In Chicago for three years in a row (2017 – 2019) and was featured by Inc. Magazine as one of the fastest-growing companies in America in 2017.

Black Spectacles offers five different online licensing exam prep courses for the ARE 5.0™ in Architecture, including all six divisions of the Architect Registration Exam (ARE), Post-Architecture Licensing Exam (PALe), Practice Management for Architects, Site Planning & Design for Architects, and Structural Systems for Architects.

7. Bringg

Bringg is an innovative technology company, that connects people and brands through its cloud-based delivery platform.

They are proud to provide the world’s leading enterprises with a comprehensive solution for their last-mile logistics, helping them create better delivery experiences for their customers.

Their platform integrates with existing systems and existing workflows to streamline operations and improve productivity.

The company’s customers benefit from increased transparency and real-time visibility into their critical assets, including drivers, products, vehicles and more.

This enables them to make informed decisions that improve the quality of their business while reducing costs and increasing revenue.

As a technologies company at the forefront of their industry, they know what it takes to be successful in the 21st century.

The company knows that technology alone doesn’t solve problems — people do. To that end, they have brought together a team of experts who have decades of experience in e-commerce, logistics and supply chain management.

Their team is made up of entrepreneurs and innovators who understand how to develop business value from great ideas.

8. Cisco Meraki

Cisco Meraki is one of the best tech companies in Chicago. It was founded in 2006 by several MIT graduates, who had the idea to take what they were doing with their large enterprise-grade WiFi networks and shrink them down to be manageable by the average person.

Their plan worked, and today, Cisco Meraki is a leading provider of cloud networking hardware for small and medium businesses, hotels, schools, restaurants and any other operation where providing simple internet access to customers or employees is a priority.

While Cisco Meraki doesn’t have a dedicated location in Chicago (it’s headquartered in San Francisco), it has a large presence in the city — which is only fitting, since Chicago is a renowned technology hub known for its innovation and entrepreneurial spirit.

Cisco Meraki’s success as one of the best tech companies in Chicago is largely driven by its ability to attract and retain top talent.

The company’s inclusive culture and commitment to employee happiness make it an ideal workplace for experienced professionals and recent graduates alike.

9. Civis Analytics

Civis Analytics is a data science software and services company headquartered in Chicago. They help companies design and execute data-driven marketing campaigns.

Civis Analytics was founded in 2013 by Dan Wagner, the former chief analytics officer of President Barack Obama’s 2012 campaign.

Civis Analytics has helped organizations like Lyft, Walmart, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the United Nations use their data to gain new insights and make better business decisions.

Civis Analytics was named one of Chicago’s Best Tech Companies to Work For in 2019 and also made Built In Chicago’s Top Companies list in 2019.

10. Clearcover

Clearcover is a Chicago-based car insurance company that has raised more than $100 million in venture capital and was named one of Built In Chicago’s 50 Startups to Watch in 2019.

The company says it uses artificial intelligence and machine learning to offer “smarter” coverage.

This allows the company to serve a wider audience, including those who may have been previously priced out of being able to afford auto insurance.

Clearcover has also partnered with corporations like Uber, Google and Progressive to offer coverage options that make sense for drivers who use their vehicles for work or who have unique driving situations.

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