CIOs Continue Hiring IT Professionals

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In another sign of a rebounding economy, technology executives are expected to continue hiring IT personel in the second quarter of 2012, albeit at a slower pace than three months ago, according to the newly released Robert Half Technology IT Hiring Index and Skills Report.

In the latest quarterly survey, 8 percent of chief information officers (CIOs) interviewed said they plan to expand their IT departments, and 5 percent expect cutbacks, for a net 3 percent projected increase in hiring activity. Most CIOs plan to maintain their current staff levels: 85 percent of those surveyed plan no change in hiring, up 15 points from the first quarter. 87 percent of technology executives were somewhat or very optimistic about their companies' growth prospects in the next three months, and 77 percent felt confident in their firms' second-quarter investment in IT projects.

The findings are based on telephone interviews with more than 1,400 CIOs from companies across the United States with 100 or more employees. Executives are asked whether their companies plan to increase or decrease the number of full-time IT personnel on their staff during the coming quarter.

Key Findings

  • Hiring has slowed, but companies are keeping their staff levels from the most recent spike last quarter. The net 3 percent increase in anticipated IT hiring activity is down seven points from a 10 percent increase in hiring activity last quarter. Eighty-five percent of CIOs plan to maintain their current staffing levels, up 15 points from the first quarter.
  • Networking professionals are in greatest demand, with 16 percent of CIOs reported the greatest challenge in finding skilled professionals. They are followed closely by IT security (15%), and help desk/technical support professionals at 14 percent.
  • Eighty-seven percent of CIOs are somewhat or very confident in their companies' growth prospects in the next three months.
  • Seventy-seven percent of technology executives expressed confidence in their firms' second-quarter investments in IT projects.
  • The Wholesale industry expects to do the most hiring at 12%, followed by 9% in the transportation industry. Manufacturing rounds out the category a 7 percent.

"Although hiring in the second quarter isn't expected to be as robust as it was at the beginning of the year, the trend remains positive. Those in hot specialties, such as networking and IT security, will continue to be in strong demand," said John Reed, executive director of Robert Half Technology. "Mobile media is an especially important area of growth right now."

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