More CIOs expect to be hiring than firing employees in the short term, but the second-quarter IT employment forecast isn't as rosy as the one for the first three months of 2011. Those are key findings of the latest survey of IT hiring sentiment by tech staffing firm Robert Half Technology.
The latest Robert Half Technology IT Hiring Index and Skills Report found 9 percent of CIOs planned to add staff from April through the end of June, while only 2 percent anticipated cutting employees. The net 7 percent increase in hiring that suggests is up from 5 percent this time last year, but down 1 percentage point from where it was for the first quarter.
Four out of five (80 percent) of the 1,400 CIOs surveyed reported confidence in their company growth prospects during the period. And the likelihood of investing in IT projects during the second quarter was rated as a 4 or higher, on a 5-point scale, by 48 percent.
Part of the impetus for the hiring surge is to handle anticipated investments in new IT undertakings, said John Reed, executive director of Robert Half Technology. "Firms are investing in projects designed to create business efficiencies and help improve service levels and often need more IT personnel to support these initiatives, particularly if their teams have been understaffed in recent years," he said.
Network administration specialists were expected to be in most demand. These were cited at possible tough hires by 65 percent of CIOs. Windows Server administrators were next, at 60 percent, followed by desktop support at 57 percent and database management at 52 percent. Other areas where quality applicants were expected to be in relatively short supply were applications development, cited by 11 percent, and help desk/technical support, at 10 percent of the response.