Growth in IT hiring slows for the 3rd month in a row

Even as the national unemployment level falls to 7.5%, growth of IT jobs has fallen from a peak of 11,700 jobs added in January to only 4,600 in April…

Slowing of IT Hiring

Labor Participation Rate in the low 60's

Inflation is pushing more people back into the active labor market

Labor Force Participation rate stabilized at lowest level in the last 50 years

100.58 million people in the U.S. are not counted in the labor force - see reasons why not working.

Growth in IT hiring slows for the 3rd month in a row - The latest BLS data shows a continued slowing in the rate of job creation for IT jobs. The CEO of Janco Associates, MV Janulaitis said, "According to the BLS there were only 4,600 jobs created for IT professionals - down from 11,700 created in January. The impact of "sequester" is part of the cause, the others are that no manufacturing jobs were added in April and the uncertainty of new taxes. In addition, more people continue to remain out of the job market with the lowest participation rate since 1979 -- even as the published unemployment rate goes down." He added, "If you look at the stock market you would think that everything is great. However, there is concern that the pace of the recovery is too slow to generate sufficient demand for new technology and systems which would result in more IT pros being hired."

The CEO added, "When we look at the BLS data for the number IT pros employed and compare that with our own independent survey of 98 CIOs in North America a strong case can be made that IT hiring will not improve significantly for some time. Our data shows that fewer than one in ten of the CIOs are looking to expand the size of their IT departments. But on the bright side, we continue to see demand for mid-level security and compliance managers to assist with the implementations of more 'web-enabled' applications and meeting compliance requirements."

Janco's CIO says, "There is a high degree of uncertainty in the economic climate and CIOs have put the brakes on most new hiring…"

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Interview and Hiring GuideHiring the right staff in troubled times

Hiring is the most critical aspect of a CIO's role. For a CIO it can be fatal of they hire a new employee find out there is a mismatch

Background screening is a critical part of the hiring process for the majority of organizations today, but it is even more essential in the current economy for several reasons. has found that a shortage of key skills is the number one challenge facing CIOs and IT functions. This may seem counter-intuitive at first given the news of continued high levels of unemployment and a "jobless" economic recovery. However coupled with many discussions with CIOs and HR professionals in end-user organizations, confirms that finding the right talent - the talent with the right mix of skills, behaviors and values to fit with the organization - is still a challenge. In fact, more applicants in the pool makes filtering and screening even more critical to ensure that time isn't lost on applicants who aren't a good fit or who might not be qualified for the position.

Hiring managers understand that a often an individual's capabilities are not necessarily a good fit. Capability refers to the skills, tools and experience that a person needs to successfully perform a job. It is not new information that many applicants exaggerate their abilities on their resumes and job applications. Things to look for are:

  • Skills Definition - Good Job Descriptions - Do you know what skills are needed to succeed and whether the employee possesses those skills? If they do not possess the necessary skills, how will the CIO help them to acquire them, and how long will that process to take?  It is in everyone's best interest for the CIO to set appropriate expectations for the employee from the beginning. This is especially true if the position requires unique technical capabilities.
  • Tools Definition - Good IT Infrastructure - Even if an individual has the skills and experience to do the job, do they have the tools to deliver peak performance? For example, a highly skilled and experienced web designer cannot build a website without adequate computer hardware and software. The tools do not have to be the most up-to-date, but a system that crashes can be incredibly frustrating and unproductive, even to the best performer.
  • Experience - Just because an employee has the skills to do a job does not mean that they has the experience to apply those skills in his specific position. This is especially true for recent graduates, outside hires from different industries and internal hires from different departments. While the required skills may be similar from one job to the next, differing applications and terminology may require that the new hire take time to learn the nuances of his new position.

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