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Computer Jobs Hit Record High

by Eric Chabrow - 07/10/2008

"With all the complaining about the current skills shortage and age discrimination in the market, it's interesting to note that IT employment has topped 4 million. But given the economy, there's still some doubt about how safe your job might really be. "

Unemployment among computer-related jobs hovers near historic lows as the U.S. information technology workforce tops 4 million for the first time.

The size of the IT workforce in the United States has topped 4 million workers for the first time last quarter, according to CIO Insight’s analysis of U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data. And the number of employed IT pros reached 3,956,000 in the second quarter of 2008, also a record high.

The IT unemployment rate inched up one-tenth of a percentage point last quarter to 2.3 percent, but still hovers near historic lows. That’s in contrast to overall unemployment, which last quarter stood at 4.7 percent, more than double the IT jobless rate. (In June, overall unemployment stood at 5.5 percent for the second consecutive month, after shedding 62,000 jobs that month. Comparable numbers aren’t available for computer-related occupations.)

Why would IT employment remain robust as unemployment rises in most other job categories? IT performs a critical role in business productivity, and the efficiencies it brings are crucial for employers looking to trim costs—including payrolls—as fuel and related expenditures soar and the economy and dollar weakens. In addition, companies today cannot operate without functioning IT systems, so certain business technology skills cannot be eliminated if a company wants to remain competitive.

A year earlier, the IT unemployment rate stood at 2.1 percent, with 3,599,000 workers employed in IT and 77,000 jobless and looking for positions in the field, for an IT workforce size of 3,675,000.

With 4,050,000 managers, professionals and other staffers holding or seeking computer-related positions last quarter, the IT workforce has grown by 10.2 percent over the past four quarters.

Contact Email: echabrow@ziffdavisenterprise.com

More Details: http://www.cioinsight.com/c/a/Workplace/Computer-Jobs-Hit-Record-High/?kc=EWWHNEMNL071008STR1