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CIOs REVEAL SECOND-QUARTER HIRING PLANS

CIOs REVEAL SECOND-QUARTER HIRING PLANS

Robert Half Technology Survey Finds Businesses Optimistic

Technology executives expect continued information technology (IT) hiring in the second quarter of 2012, albeit at a slower pace than three months ago, according to the just-released Robert Half Technology IT Hiring Index and Skills Report. In the latest quarterly survey, 8 percent of chief information officers (CIOs) interviewed said they plan to expand their IT departments, and 5 percent expect cutbacks, for a net 3 percent projected increase in hiring activity. Most CIOs plan to maintain their current staff levels: 85 percent of those surveyed plan no change in hiring, up 15 points from the first quarter.

In the same survey, 87 percent of technology executives were somewhat or very optimistic about their companies' growth prospects in the next three months, and 77 percent felt confident in their firms' second-quarter investment in IT projects.

The IT Hiring Index and Skills Report is based on telephone interviews with more than 1,400 CIOs from companies across the United States with 100 or more employees. Executives are asked whether their companies plan to increase or decrease the number of full-time IT personnel on their staff during the coming quarter. The survey is conducted by an independent research firm and developed by Robert Half Technology, a leading provider of IT professionals on a project and full-time basis. Robert Half has been tracking IT hiring activity in the United States since 1995.

Key Findings

The net 3 percent increase in anticipated IT hiring activity is down seven points from a net 10 percent increase in hiring activity projected last quarter. Eighty-five percent of CIOs plan to maintain their current staffing levels, up 15 points from the first quarter.

Networking and IT security professionals are in greatest demand, followed closely by help desk/technical support professionals, according to survey respondents.

Sixty-five percent of CIOs said it's challenging to find skilled professionals today.

Eighty-seven percent of CIOs are somewhat or very confident in their companies' growth prospects in the next three months.

Seventy-seven percent of technology executives expressed confidence in their firms' second-quarter investments in IT projects, rating the likelihood that their companies would be investing in IT projects a three or higher on a five-point scale, with five being most confident.

"Although hiring in the second quarter isn't expected to be as robust as it was at the beginning of the year, the trend remains positive. Those in hot specialties, such as networking and IT security, will continue to be in strong demand," said John Reed, executive director of Robert Half Technology. "Mobile media is an especially important area of growth right now."

Confidence in Business Growth and IT Investments

Eighty-seven percent of CIOs reported being somewhat or very confident in their companies' prospects for growth in the second quarter of 2012 77 percent of technology executives expressed confidence in their firms' second-quarter investment in IT projects, rating the likelihood that their companies would be investing in IT projects a three or higher on a five-point scale, with five being most confident.

Skills in Demand

The functional areas in which executives say they are experiencing the greatest challenge in finding skilled IT professionals are networking (16 percent) and IT security (15 percent). Help desk/technical support, applications development and data/database management followed, cited by 14 percent,13 percent and 10 percent of survey respondents, respectively.

Network administration remains the skill set in greatest demand, cited by 55 percent of CIOs. Database management and desktop support were next, with 54 percent and 51 percent, of the response, respectively.

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