A new IT jobs report points to shifting employment prospects. While demand for business analysts, technology architects, and SAP configuration specialists lis looking up -- especially in the healthcare and green energy sectors -- lower level "commodity" IT jobs will continue to be eliminated or outsourced.
In 2009, about 630,000 back-office jobs -- including about 300,000 IT jobs -- were eliminated from the payrolls of 4,000 global, publicly traded companies with more than $1 billion revenue, according to a new report from research firm Hackett Group.
Of those jobs, about half -- including 150,000 of the IT positions -- were U.S.-based, says Michael Janssen, Hackett Group chief research officer and co-author of the report.
In the bigger scope, from 2000 to 2007, these corporation eliminated about 1.4 million back-office jobs, including approximately 900,000 IT jobs, about half which were in the U.S., said Erik Dorr, Hackett Group senior business advisor and co-author of the report.
"Some of these jobs were outsourced, and so some of these people are on the payrolls of other companies," including U.S. based technology services firms like IBM and others, said Dorr. However, in many cases, those positions were replaced with people offshore.
"If you're in India, that's good. If you're in the U.S., it's not," said Janssen.
But not all news is bad, Janssen said. "A small percentage" of these jobs could return to the U.S. as some companies that offshored IT functions bring some of the work back to domestic outsourcing firms, said Janssen. Still, "many of these jobs are gone for good," said Janssen.
Among those lost IT jobs are "lower end" and "commodity" type work such as developers, help desk and administration jobs, said Dorr.
However, while many of these jobs are gone, there is still "high demand" by companies to fill IT positions, including business analyst, technology architect, program managers and SAP configuration specialists, said Dorr.
Yet, while "companies struggle to fill these jobs, they make up only a small percentage of the overall jobs lost" he said.