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October 03, 2007

Tech jobs increase slowly, but surely

The tech bubble's burst was a pop heard 'round the world—or at least 'round the IT industry. Even now we feel its effects, as tech job creation continues to lag behind private sector job growth.

Still, we have reason to hope, thanks to analysis from the American Electronics Association (AeA). AeA's latest report, which looks at data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, highlights 118,500 new high-tech jobs for the first half of 2007, a 2 percent increase overall.

This year also marks the first time since the bubble burst that all four tech sectors—manufacturing, communications services, software services and engineering and tech services—saw an increase in jobs.

Manufacturing was at one end with a 0.1 percent rise. Engineering and software, each up 3.3 percent, were at the other.

This report has a few implications to consider:

* Engineering and software services are the only service sectors keeping pace with private sector job growth, also at 3.3 percent. Such job availability and security will be attractive to job seekers, and is likely to pull top talent.

* While tech's overall gain is a little less than last year's 143,000 additions, each sector experienced some growth, boding well for continued upward trends.

* The tech industry pays 86 percent more than average private sector jobs, and supports other job functions, as AeA president William T. Archey points out. The economy benefits as a result, and helps make tech jobs indispensable (and thus more secure).

How do these numbers look from the ground? What new jobs have cropped up in your organization, and who's showing up to fill them?

Posted by Jim L.


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