This is the second consecutive quarter that the BLS survey estimated U.S. IT employment above 4 million. In the second quarter of this year, the survey showed 4.06 million IT pros employed. The figures come from a quarterly summary of the Bureau of Labor Statistics' monthly Current Population Survey, which asks households about their employment situation.
In 2008, by comparison, the survey showed three consecutive quarters with more than 4 million IT pros employed, before the fourth quarter of that year wiped out around 260,000 IT jobs, as the banking crisis began in force. It wasn't until 2008 that U.S. IT employment surpassed 4 million for the first time.
The IT unemployment rate actually rose slightly this quarter despite the increased number of people employed in IT jobs, because the IT workforce--those employed and the unemployed who describe themselves as IT workers--also grew. The IT employment rate was 3.6%, up from 3.4% last quarter. The unemployment rate for all managerial, professional, and related occupations, which includes 54.7 million people, is at 4.8%.
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The IT employment data comes from totaling the survey data related to 12 IT job categories the BLS recognizes, such as IT manager, software developer, systems analyst, and support specialist. The BLS doesn't post this quarterly report on its site because some of the individual job categories (such as information security analyst) by themselves are too small for accurate quarterly estimates. That's why we report only the total IT employment and unemployment, not individual job categories.
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