Is the Worst Over for IT Hiring?
Are you a dot-com casualty? IT refugee? Newly minted MCSE entering the job market? If so, your employment outlook may not be quite as bleak as it was just a few months ago.
The first piece of good news comes from the Conference
Board's Help-Wanted Index. The index is a survey
of the help-wanted sections of 51 major newspapers
across the country. Although there was a sharp
drop in employers looking to hire from last April
to May, the drop from May to June was much less
severe. Also, the proportion of labor markets
with rising want-ad volume from May to June rose
from 18 percent to 35 percent.
Ken Goldstein, a Conference Board economist,
stated in a press release that the numbers are
"After a sharp drop in May, demand for
labor showed only a small decline in June. Latest
readings from the Help-Wanted Index point to only
modest job growth ahead. That should boost consumer
confidence, with many consumers assuming the worst
An IT jobs Web site has seen similar trends recently.
JustTechJobs.com has seen the number of job-hunters
on its site decline, with a similar growth in
employers looking for workers.
JustTechJobs CEO Russ Curtis said that he's seen
a 25 percent drop in people looking for jobs in
June and July.
"We used to get approximately 1,000 new
job-seekers per day; now we're getting about 750
per day," Curtis said in mid-August. At the
same time, the number of employers looking for
help has spiked 21.8 percent, and the number of
available jobs has gone up 15 percent.
The news wasn't as encouraging from another large
technology-jobs site. At Dice.com, the number
of job-seekers has leveled off in recent months,
"but I would hesitate to say we're on the
upswing," said Tom Silver, vice-president
He added that, as for employers, "In the
best case (the number of openings) is holding
steady; but in some cases, we're seeing some slowdown"
in the number of job postings.
Keith Ward is the editor in chief of Visual Studio Magazine.