Center, Logan Dahlquist and Alaina Dahlquist head to their cars after attending the career fair conducted by CGI in Lafayette. CGI announced Thursday it will expand into the Versailles Building in downtown Lafayette. 

CGI has reached 600 jobs at its U.S. Delivery Center in Lafayette, exceeding expectations when it first opened in 2014, and is looking to hire dozens more, company officials announced Tuesday.

The global information technology firm, which reported 500 jobs in Lafayette just over a year ago, doubled its initial projection for Lafayette from 400 to 800, which it expects to reach in 2023. Its cumulative annual payroll now exceeds commitments by $40 million and is projected to top $480 million over the next decade, company officials said.

The company will expand into the 50,000-square-foot space in the Versailles Centre in downtown Lafayette this summer and house 400 employees there.

“CGI clients and professionals continue to benefit from outstanding local and regional partnerships in support of job creation and workforce development,” said William LaBar, vice president and U.S. Delivery Centers lead with CGI. “We are proud of our ongoing engagement with state and local government leaders, educators, and economic development partners who have helped grow high-tech educational opportunities and job-creation across the state of Louisiana.”

The company has gained more clients from various segments of the economy, both public and private, LaBar said Wednesday. More clients are becoming open to the concept of contracting with an IT company based in a smaller city such as Lafayette instead of larger metro areas, he said. 

“It’s really, really hard to find and keep good talent in large cities right now in IT,” he said. "The strategy we have is working."

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Local positions have been filled primarily with recruits from the Acadiana region, with approximately 35% hired through the company’s college recruiting program, drawing candidates from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette and other state institutions. The company has also lured workers from outside Louisiana as more than 20% of its workforce has relocated from outside the state.

CGI projects another 30 college or entry-level hires in 2021 and is currently seeking 60 more employees.

CGI earned tax credits through Louisiana Economic Development office programs such as Quality Jobs and the Digital Interactive Media and Software Program. CGI’s growth in Lafayette has buoyed by UL’s higher education initiative that will triple the annual number of undergraduate degrees awarded by its School of Computing and Informatics.

“The CGI hiring milestone is exciting news for Lafayette and the Acadiana region,” said state Sen. Page Cortez, R-Lafayette. “The partnership between the LED, LEDA, UL and CGI is a shining example of a public-private partnership. Together, they have created high-paying jobs for those who want to stay in Lafayette, the opportunity to pursue successful careers in the IT industry and have attracted new residents to the region.”

With 76,000 consultants and other professionals across the globe, CGI is among the largest IT and business consulting services firms in the world. It delivers end-to-end services and solutions, including strategic IT and business consulting, systems integration, intellectual property and managed IT and business process services.

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