IT employment rates are growing, showing a substantial addition of jobs throughout the IT sector. On the other hand, wages are not growing at the same pace, leading many professionals to seek new opportunities and ways to build their own earning power. For those who are entering into the job market or who are considering a move within their field, employment rates are an excellent way to gauge the difficulty of the transition.
IT Employment Grows Modestly
The employment rate has accelerated by 3.9% from January 2016 to February 2016, adding a total of 196,200 IT jobs to the sector. This is very impressive, given the fact that many other industries have begun to slow down. As the IT employment growth rate continues to expand, the market becomes more stable for job seekers. Engineering employment is also growing, but more modestly by comparison. The growth of the rest of the economy has been slow.
In addition to jobs growing, they are also becoming more diverse and specialized. Rather than simply hiring for software engineers, employers are finding themselves looking for engineers for specific types of software solution. This gives employees the opportunity to build their knowledge within a niche and become experts in their field.
Wages Aren’t Keeping Pace
Though employment within the IT sector has accelerated, wages aren’t keeping pace for many industries, including IT. With more jobs available and more employees available, employers can still be highly selective regarding the employees they do hire. But that doesn’t mean that IT employees are powerless to improve their earnings. IT employees can consider increasing their wages through:
- Acquiring more advanced certifications. IT certifications are often necessary for not only showing general knowledge but also showing knowledge of modern technology and strategies. Technology is changing very quickly and professionals need to keep up to remain competitive.
- Getting security clearance. Security clearance can open up a very wide realm of government contracting work. When security clearance is paired with CompTIA certifications, they can open the door to a lot of military-based contracting and related positions.
- Learning more programming languages. For developers, becoming a jack-of-all-trades can have its benefits. There are many specialized programming languages today for mobile environments, data analysis, and back-end production. These languages can make a professional far more useful to an employer.
IT professionals aren’t the only ones being hit by a wage slowdown. In fact, those within the financial sector have been the hardest hit. Overall, IT professionals are maintaining stable ground compared to many other industries.
The future of the IT industry remains uncertain given the current economy. Restrictive immigration policies, for instance, are a top concern for many IT professionals. Though in the short-term these practices could improve the local job markets, it could stifle business and lead to a long-term economic slowdown. The only way IT professionals can future proof themselves against these problems is by making themselves a top candidate. If you’re currently looking for a position, now is the time. At Software Specialists, a curated job listing is maintained that contains only the best-of-the-best positions.