IT jobs on the rise – sort of

If you work with computers, chances are your employment prospects are good – depending on what you do with computers.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, some 13% of the 96,000 jobs added in August were IT positions. Both software developers and computer hardware engineers saw the unemployment rates for their careers drop significantly from the first to the second quarter of 2012. And surveys of CIOs indicate that IT budgets are increasing and hiring will continue to improve during 2013.

It sounds good, right? Well, yes, for the most part. But not for everyone. Unemployment seems to be on the rise for computer support specialists, with the rate rising from 7.1% to 8.2% between the first and second quarters of 2012.

Expert also say that a serious division is coming – indeed, it may already be here – between people who tell computers what to do and people whose computers tell them what to do. That divide will be global and profoundly economic, creating an increasing rift between the haves and the have-nots.

If you want to be among the haves, get a solid technical education. Forget English, and focus on math, science, engineering, and technology. Or figure out how to write a runaway bestseller.

2 thoughts on “IT jobs on the rise – sort of”

  1. “Forget about English” is bad advice for IT professionals, either now or in the future. Business IT professionals need solid communications and language skills in addition to the technical skills required for the job. Technology/business collaboration is the key to success, and one cannot have true collaboration if native language skills are left wanting.

  2. Absolutely, good communication skills are important in all fields. Nowhere in the article do I suggest otherwise. However, an English degree is another matter altogether. In our current culture and economy, an English degree will just about qualify you for a minimum-wage job in a customer service call center. So while everyone needs acceptable English skills (the sort of skills that used to be taught in elementary school), a STEM education is far more bankable. No one will hire you merely because you know the perfect past tenses of irregular verbs or how to use the serial comma correctly. So study English in college if you want. But don’t expect your English degree to put you among the “haves” in the future global economy.

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