It’s time to do a bit of rooting for the home team.
With all the hoopla about tech jobs moving abroad and the allure that global sourcing holds for chief information officers, it is easy to imagine scenarios in which tens of thousands of tech jobs now located in the United States will find homes elsewhere on the planet.
Not so fast, says a U.S. Department of Commerce report, which lists a plethora of reasons why key tech jobs will stay in the good ol’ USA.
A section of the report details nine factors favorable to the United States, including a stable nation/economy, strong data security/privacy protection/respect for intellectual property, reliable telecom infrastructure and software development benefits from market proximity to customers.
The report then cites 15 characteristics of IT work favorable for performance in the United States. Highlights of that list include work that crosses many disciplines, work that requires a high degree of personal interaction, work that requires non-rule-based decision making and work that requires high levels of creativity, innovation and insight.
So, it seems, if the Department of Commerce is right, plenty of important tech work will continue to be conducted on these shores.
Equally encouraging in the long term is the recent SAT results that show improvement in math scores for American high school students.
But more work needs to be done. Every IT worker in America should feel a direct responsibility for cultivating an education and business environment favorable to future IT jobs. If we don’t, the current and admirable focus on “no child left behind” will morph quickly and desperately into “no country left behind.”
Drop me a note if you would like to see the full Department of Commerce list.