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CIOs Reveal First-Quarter Hiring Plans: Robert Half Technology Survey

Date: December 17 2012

TORONTO, Dec. 17, 2012 /CNW/ - Technology executives expect information technology (IT) hiring to increase in the first quarter of 2013, according to the just-released Robert Half Technology IT Hiring Index and Skills Report. In the latest quarterly survey, 15 per cent of chief information officers (CIOs) said they plan to expand their IT departments, and 1 per cent expect cutbacks, for a net 14 per cent projected increase in hiring activity. This is up two points from the previous quarter's projections. Eighty-three per cent of CIOs plan to maintain their current staffing levels.

The IT Hiring Index and Skills Report is based on telephone interviews with more than 270 CIOs from companies across Canada 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 Canada since 1995.

Key Findings
- The net 14 per cent increase in anticipated IT hiring activity is up two points from the net 12 per cent increase in hiring activity projected last quarter. - Eighty-three per cent of CIOs plan to maintain their current staffing levels. - IT security professionals, help desk/technical support professionals, and applications development professionals are the most challenging to find, according to survey respondents. - Forty-five per cent of CIOs said it's somewhat or very challenging to find skilled professionals today. - Eighty-four per cent of CIOs are somewhat or very confident in their companies' growth prospects in the next three months. - Sixty-five per cent of technology executives expressed confidence that their firms will be investing in IT projects in the first quarter.

"As the employment market for IT professionals continues to remain active, there is a real uptick in demand for those with skills in areas such as IT security and technical support," said Lara Dodo, regional vice-president of Robert Half Technology in Canada. "The new year, especially, is a time for many companies to re-assess their budget, and hire additional staff in support of critical IT projects that may have been put on hold in the past."

Confidence in Business Growth and IT Investments
Eighty-four per cent of CIOs reported being somewhat or very confident in their companies' prospects for growth in the first quarter of 2013.
Sixty-five per cent of CIOs also said they are confident that their firms would invest in IT projects in the first quarter of 2013; 29 per cent are not very or not at all confident.
Skills in Demand

The functional areas in which executives said it is very challenging to find skilled IT professionals are IT security (15 per cent), help desk/technical support (13 per cent) and applications development (7 per cent).

Network administration and desktop support are the skill sets in greatest demand, each cited by 64 per cent of CIOs. Wireless network management and Windows administration were next, with 54 per cent and 53 per cent of the response, respectively.

Industries Hiring
Executives in the finance industry expect the most IT hiring in the first quarter. A net 26 per cent of CIOs in this sector plan to add to their IT departments. This was followed by the construction industry, with a net 17 per cent of technology leaders anticipating hiring increases. Wholesale was next, with a net 16 per cent of executives in this industry planning to add staff.

About the Survey
The quarterly IT Hiring Index and Skills Report was developed by Robert Half Technology and conducted by an independent research firm. First published in 1995, the study is based on more than 270 telephone interviews with CIOs from a random sample of Canadian companies with 100 or more employees. In order for the study to be statistically representative and ensure that companies from all segments were represented, the sample was stratified by industry and number of employees. The results were then weighted to reflect the proper number of employees within each industry. The margin of error for this study is +/- 5.0 per cent at the 90 per cent level of confidence.

About Robert Half Technology
With more than 100 locations worldwide, Robert Half Technology is a leading provider of technology professionals for initiatives ranging from web development and multiplatform systems integration to network security and technical support. Robert Half Technology offers online job search services at Visitors can also request a copy of the Robert Half Technology 2013 Salary Guide, which includes a wide range of IT job descriptions.

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