August Big for IT Sector Job Growth, While Telecom Still Lags

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The U.S. IT sector heads into the Labor Day weekend on a positive employment note with an estimated 10,300 jobs added in August, led by another strong showing in the IT and software services category and the best month so far this year for tech manufacturing, according to the latest CompTIA IT Employment Tracker.

The monthly report analyzes IT-specific job data from the latest Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Employment Situation Summary. The August jobs data does not take into account the full impact of Hurricane Harvey.

CompTIA's Tim Herbert

CompTIA’s Tim Herbert

The IT and software services category has grown by more than 106,000 new jobs in 2017. On the down side, telecommunications shed 2,700 jobs, while positions in data processing, hosting and related services declined by 600.

“IT services have powered tech sector job growth all year,” said Tim Herbert, CompTIA’s senior vice president of research and market intelligence. “All signs point to this trend continuing through year’s end. The question is whether gains in IT and software services, along with contributions from tech manufacturing and data services, will offset losses in telecom to achieve projected net job growth on the year.”

The computer and electronic products manufacturing category added to August’s positive growth, expanding by 3,900 jobs. Within tech manufacturing, the computers and peripherals category accounted for most of the gains.

Other information services, including search portals, added 1,700 positions last month.

Total employment across IT is estimated at 4,445,300. The unemployment rate for IT occupations stood at 2.4 percent in August.

“The labor market for IT positions remains extremely tight with the IT occupation unemployment rate nearly half that of the national rate,” Herbert said.

IT job postings were flat in August, and have essentially been flat since the early part of the year. The largest month-over-month gain was in the category of IT project managers, with 1,300 additional job postings last month.

Tech executives and business owners are confident their revenue growth will continue through the fourth quarter.

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