November 5, 2012 – U.S. IT hiring rose in October after an unanticipated dip the previous month, and analysts expect more positive news in the months following Tuesday’s presidential election.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported the IT services industry added approximately 12,500 jobs in October, up from September’s net loss of 1,700 positions. Approximately 7,000 of those jobs consisted of new hires in the computer systems design area, according to the federal reporting agency. For the jobs categories that cover IT hiring, the non-seasonally adjusted IT information unemployment rate was 7.7 percent for October 2012, up from 6.6 percent that same month in October 2011. However, another category, professional and business services, registered an 8.1 percent unemployment rate in October 2012, down 2 percent from that same month in October 2011.
Hiring numbers in the September jobs report from the BLS showed a slight decline compared with that same month in 2011 and in the rally of hiring during the summer of 2012.
IT analyst firm Foote Partners anticipated the October rebound due to start of a new fiscal calendar and the end of the campaign season. David Foote, CEO at Foote Partners, noted that jobs numbers in the IT field for July and August reflected the largest month-over-month gains in five years, and attributed September’s decline to marketplace “nervousness.”
”In interviews with hundreds of executives in early October we learned that indeed many had placed temporarily freezes on IT job requisitions in September while they reviewed their plans. Those have been lifted for the most part, active searches for talent are back on track, and the October numbers showed that,” said Foote in a release on the numbers. “I’m certain that we will also see strong IT numbers in November’s employment report.”
Foote Partners was not alone in attributing September’s hiring dip in IT to the U.S. presidential election. Analysts at Forrester and others expect IT spending and hiring to ramp back up no matter which candidate is selected. Looking ahead, IT hiring analysts Robert Half Technology expect 2013 to be a break-out year for IT hiring as enterprises fill out full-time and part-time roles for emerging initiatives, such as network administrators and database analysts.
Overall, U.S. unemployment remained nearly flat in October compared with September, with a 0.1 percent increase in filings, but 171,000 new jobs reported.