Growth in First Quarter IT Hiring Projected

The conventional wisdom among economic forecasters says that the U.S. economy is entering 2007 in a fragile state. Economists polled by MSNBC.com see growth in the gross domestic product slowing to just 2.3 percent for the full year.


This pessimism, however, is not reflected in the employment picture for IT professionals. According to IT staffing firm Robert Half Technology’s latest “IT Hiring Index and Skills Report,” the first quarter of ’07 should see solid growth in IT hiring.


Sixteen percent of CIOs polled by Robert Half Technology reported they planned to add IT staff in the next three months, with only 2 percent anticipating cutbacks during that time. That net hiring increase of 14 percent is the highest the firm has recorded since the fourth quarter of 2001, and it is up 4 percent from the previous quarter’s forecast.


“2006 was the first overall good year we’ve had really since ’01 and even in ’01, it was more the first half of ’01 because we were already in a downturn, depending on what part of the country you were in,” said John Estes, Robert Half Technology vice president. “So, it’s been a long time coming. A lot of hiring managers were maybe a little reluctant before — they wanted to see some long term growth, and now they’re finally going, ‘OK, looks like things are good and are going to stay good for a while. Let’s move forward and add staff.’”


What this means for…


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