IT Career JumpStart

Sep 19 2011   2:56PM GMT

A Glimmer of Good News on the IT Hiring Front?

Ed Tittel Ed Tittel Profile: Ed Tittel

I found a recent story at the Certification Magazine Website entitled “CIOs Talk IT Hiring in Q4” that appears to provide a glimmer of good news on the IT hiring front, for what would be a decidedly welcome change. This report is based on the most recent Robert Half Technology IT Hiring Index and Skills Report for Q4 2011.

Here are some highlights, straight from the Robert Half press release on this latest report:

  • The net 6 percent increase in anticipated IT hiring activity is up two points from a net 4 percent increase in hiring activity projected last quarter.
  • Ninety-two percent of CIOs are confident in their companies’ growth prospects in the next three months, up five-points from last quarter.
  • Eighty-eight percent of technology executives rated the confidence of their firms investing in IT projects in the fourth quarter a 3 or higher on a 5-point scale, with 5 being the most optimistic.
  • IT security and networking professionals are in greatest demand right now, according to survey respondents.
  • Two-thirds (66 percent) of CIOs said it’s challenging to find skilled professionals today, up eighteen points from the previous quarter.

Hmmm: very interesting! Here’s what I take away from this information: First, IT hiring plans are ever so slightly on the upswing. Second, even though growth projections are decidedly optimistic, hiring plans are not very aggressive at all. Third, a lack of bullishness also shows in the middle-of-the road rating for confidence in upcoming IT investment for the current quarter. Fourth, security and networking are as important as ever (something that’s unlikely to change for the foreseeable future). Fifth, as the old saw goes “Good help is hard to find.” Maybe this is more a case of “no bad news is good news” though it’s not unwarranted to say “no big change means no big news,” either.

While both CertMag and Robert Half seem ebullient about this report, I’m not so sure it tells us to expect any significant changes in the IT hiring and activity climate through the end of 2011 (and probably, well into 2012 as well). I find myself repeating my old mantra “Hunker down. Stay put. Things have gotta get better sometime…” But when?

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