by Meridith Levinson

IT Professionals Remain Conflicted About Economy, Job Market

Apr 29, 2010

IT professionals are still pessimistic about the job market even though slightly more of them think the economy is improving.

IT professionals’ outlook on the economy and job market remained uncertain in the first quarter of 2010, according to the results of Technisource’s latest survey of IT worker confidence.

First, IT professionals are divided on the strength of the economy. Nearly one-third (32 percent) believe the economy is improving—up three percent from the fourth quarter of 2009. But the same number of IT professionals think the economy is weakening. That leaves the 35 percent of IT workers who say the economy isn’t any better or worse.

IT professionals polled on behalf of Technisource are more confident in their employers’ futures than they are in the economy, though the number of IT pros who report being optimistic about their employers’ businesses decreased slightly in the first quarter of 2010. The majority, 63 percent, are confident in their employers, but that number is down three percent from the fourth quarter of 2009.

The number of IT workers who are pessimistic about their employers’ futures ticked up one percent from the previous quarter, to 13 percent in the first quarter. Roughly one-fourth (24 percent) of polled IT professionals remain unsure of their employers’ futures, a two percent increase from the fourth quarter.

IT workers’ outlook on the job market is as conflicted as their perspective on the economy. They report feeling slightly more confident in their ability to find a new job, but they’re pessimistic about the number of IT jobs available. What’s more, even though more IT professionals are confident in their ability to find a new job, they’re still a minority, and fewer IT professionals in the first quarter plan to look for a new job over the next 12 months than in the fourth quarter. Here are the specifics:

Ability to Find a New Job

  • 41 percent are confident they could find a new job, up two percent from the fourth quarter 2009.
  • 21 percent aren’t confident they could find a new job, down six percent from the fourth quarter.
  • 39 percent don’t know what to make of their odds of finding a new job.

Availability of Jobs

  • 11 percent believe there are more jobs now (unchanged from fourth quarter).
  • 68 percent think there are fewer jobs (unchanged from fourth quarter).
  • 21 percent aren’t sure what the IT job market holds.

Plans to Conduct a Job Search

  • 32 percent say they’ll look for a new job over the next 12 months, down from 38 percent in the fourth quarter.
  • 52 percent say they won’t look for a new job, up from 48 percent.
  • 16 percent are unsure of their job search plans.

Do you think the economy and IT job market are looking up? At all? If you’re employed, will you try to find a new job this year?