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Money Concerns Fueling Job Worries Among Tech Pros

While IT job confidence plunged in November, it still surpassed that of workers in other industries.
Techies were insecure about jobs and worried about finances last month, according to the latest monthly phone survey by IT staffing and outsourcing firm Hudson.

Compared to a base score of 100, IT job confidence plunged 8.2 points in November, to 103.5. IT job optimism had hit a two-year high in September, reaching a score of 114.6, but has been sliding since then, declining to 111.7 in October.

But despite the slippage, the 400-plus IT and telecom workers surveyed were still more optimistic last month about their jobs than the approximately 9,000 workers in other industries surveyed by Hudson, including healthcare, manufacturing, and accounting and financial services, said Paul Taylor, a Hudson VP.

Nationally, job confidence among workers in all sectors sunk 8.9 points to an all-time low of 91.9 in November. That's down from 105.3 in November 2006.

The biggest drop in job confidence was among accounting and financial services staff, which fell a whopping 16 points, while optimism among healthcare workers slipped 14 points last month, he said. The manufacturing sector -- as is always the case -- had the lowest job confidence score in November, at 83.0.

"Concerns about the economy are boiling over" into how secure people across all industries are feeling about their jobs and personal finances, he said. However, those fears don't necessary match reality in the workplace.

For instance, while more IT and telecom workers worried about staff cuts at their companies in November -- 16% last month, compared with only 14% in October -- hiring among IT managers remains strong, said Taylor.

"IT managers are still bullish about hiring and IT budgets next year," he said.

As for money worries, 39% -- or 7% fewer techies in November compared with October -- said they thought their personal finances were improving.