IT Employment

IT jobs outlook for 2009: The good and the bad

A depressing string of layoff announcements across the corporate world has gotten 2009 off to an inauspicious start. So what do the trends mean for IT employment in 2009? Here's a sober look at both the good signs and the bad.

A depressing string of layoff announcements across the corporate world has gotten 2009 off to an inauspicious start. So what do the trends mean for IT employment in 2009? Here's a sober look at both the good signs and the bad.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

January has been brutal for U.S. workers. Company after company has announced layoffs, salary freezes, unpaid furloughs, hiring freezes, plant closings, and budget cuts. With all the bad news flooding the wire, it's easy to forget that more than nine out of ten Americans in the workforce still have jobs despite the dramatic downturn.

Those who work in the IT profession are certainly not immune to the pain that has been afflicting the U.S. job market, but they do have a few factors going for them that could help many of them weather the storm better than some of their co-workers in other fields. Let's take a look at several trends - the good and the bad - currently affecting the IT job market and then read the tea leaves to decipher what we might expect from the IT jobs outlook in 2009.

IT pro salaries went up in 2008

As part of its annual salary survey, the tech job portal Dice.com surveyed 19,444 IT professionals between August and November 2008. Dice reported that the average salary for working in IT is now $78,035, a 4.6% increase over 2007 ($74,570).

Other key findings from the survey include:

  • Job roles with the largest raises: Security analyst (8.4%), Software engineer (7%), Application developer (6.6%), and Network engineer (6%)
  • Outside of managers and executives, the highest paying job role in IT was Project manager, making an average salary of $103,424.
  • Several large metro areas saw significant jumps in average pay: Detroit (9%), Phoenix (8.5%), San Diego (8.3%), and Miami (7.7%)
  • The metropolitan areas that saw the largest increases in IT worker salaries were all mid-sized cities: Charlotte (14.7%), St. Louis (12.5%), Pittsburgh (11.9%), Portland, OR (9.3%), and Baltimore (9.2%)
  • As a whole, female IT pros make 12% less than male IT pros, although this number flattens out when comparing women and men with comparable job titles, years of experience, and educational levels

"That average tech salaries are rising even as the economy falls reveals how much has changed since the dot-com days," said Tom Silver, Chief Marketing Officer at Dice. "Today many technology professionals are seen as core assets where they work. As they enhance their skills, they'll need to align those efforts with the market's shifting demands. However, over the long-term, updating and broadening one's skill set is the key to continued salary gains."

IT pros are worried about 2009

Despite the salary uptick in 2008, the respondents to the Dice survey also expressed some major fear and uncertainty about 2009.When asked about their biggest career concerns for 2009, the IT pros responded as follows:

  • Keeping skills up to date (22%)
  • Position elimination (20%)
  • Lower salary increases (14%)
  • Canceled projects / fewer projects (12%)
  • Increased workload, due to staff cuts (10%)

The survey also stated, "Dice reports a 67 percent increase in the number of new resumes posted to its site in the fourth quarter (year over year). Given that the majority of technology professionals who utilize Dice are currently employed, such 'passive job hunting' indicates greater anxiety about the job market."

Companies with cash are still laying off workers

Tom Foremski over at ZDNet also spotted a disturbing trend. He did an analysis of several of the big tech companies that have announced layoffs and found that many of them have very strong balance sheets, with enough cash to weather the downturn without resorting to layoffs. The fact that they are still doing layoffs is a bad sign. It says that they do not have confidence that the economy will turn around anytime soon, otherwise they would simply use their ample cash to ride it out in the short term and come out stronger on the other side.

Here are the big tech companies that Foremski pinpointed:

  • Microsoft: $19.71 billion ($1.98 billion debt)
  • Apple: $24.49 billion (0 debt)
  • Intel: $11.84 billion ($1.99 billion debt)
  • Cisco Systems: $26.7 billion ($6.87 billion debt)
  • Adobe: $2.02 billion ($350 million debt)
  • Google: $14.41 billion (0 debt)
  • Yahoo: $3.2 billion ($63 million debt)

As Tom put it, "It's tough to be laid off, [but] it must be tougher still to be laid off from a company with billions in cash - especially since you helped build that cash reserve."

Who's hiring?

Rafe Needleman over at Webware has a spreadsheet that tracks the tech companies that are still hiring despite the current economic malaise. Here is list of the some of the most recognizable companies on the spreadsheet and in parentheses you can see the number of open positions they have at the time this article is being written.

  • Intel (1000+)
  • Salesforce.com (400+)
  • Walmart IT (300+)
  • Apple (189)
  • Siemens IT (100+)
  • Garmin (100+)
  • Facebook (100)
  • Samsung (50+)
  • Research in Motion (50)
  • Yale University IT (45)
  • GoDaddy (45)
  • Omniture (35)
  • Mozilla (30)
  • Barracuda Networks (28)
  • Cisco (25)

At the time this article was written, Dice.com listed 56,830 open jobs in the IT field.

The bottom line

The biggest factor that IT professionals have going for them during this economic downturn is that many organizations are looking to IT to help the company streamline, automate, conserve energy, cut costs, reduce headcount, and generally do-more-with-less. In some cases, that will mean spending more money in IT in order to reduce costs in other departments.

On the other hand, one of the biggest targets for cuts in many organizations is central services, which is being whacked in order to reduce overhead. Highly-centralized IT departments will be a huge target in these types of organizations because IT professionals are typically well-paid on the salary scale and a centralized IT budget is typically a big number, which puts a huge bulls-eye on it.

Ultimately, some centralized IT departments that have not articulated their value well enough will be hit hard by this current economic downturn. However, a lot of others will seize on this as a great opportunity to demonstrate the value of IT at a time when the chips are down and a lot is at stake.

About

Jason Hiner is Editor in Chief of TechRepublic and Long Form Editor of ZDNet. He writes about the people, products, and ideas changing how we live and work in the 21st century. He's co-author of the upcoming book, Follow the Geeks (bit.ly/ftgeeks).

78 comments
daileyml
daileyml

I think one of the more important things we can do is to ensure we are prepared for the possibility of losing our IT job. I see a lot of people worried, and for good reason, but few realize that the time to prepare for a job search is before you are let go. I cover the topic in a recent article I've written (see http://daileymuse.com/2009/01/5-things-you-should-do-before-the-loss-of-your-it-job/ if you're interested) but in a nutshell you need to be proactive in preparing for the loss of your IT job whether you think you'll be affected or not. You will produce the best resume, find the best references, and build the best personal network while you are still employed. -Mike D http://www.daileymuse.com

jalander
jalander

i think you do have good advice. I know in my situation after 14 years I was comfortable in my job. I also know that when a company decides to outsource 80% of it S&P staff, they have not listened to anyone about value. they have already 'devalued' the employees and decided 1. They cost too much 2. Their job couldn't be that hard 3. Let's outsource We had 'management' in S&P. Doubt they opened their mouths too much because they too wanted their severence packages. One VP did and was asked to resign. So who would you tell that would listen? The highter ups didn't ask the worker bees anything. The decisions were made and we had to live with them. When you are a technology company and your management does not know your value, it is very very bad.

ssemmens
ssemmens

...

cbulla
cbulla

Well, the flip of that is you have 'free time' to create other income beyond the part time.. right?

arthur_kangu
arthur_kangu

This I great, Kindly link me to these IT co. My current employer does not appreciate IT much, so I get peanut.

namariano
namariano

Intel closed philippine plant

rackerman
rackerman

Interesting results in that, of all the industry pundits (editorial staff, large recruitment firms etc.), this is the largest sample set from which projections have been made. So what does that say about these other editorial sources predicting doom and gloom? Now, that being said, I'll be waiting with bated breath to see this same survey at then end of the first quarter.

agilebrainz
agilebrainz

I've already received an email from the corporate execs saying that since IT is a 'non-revenue generating' operation, that we should do everything possible to limit expenses. These are the same Execs who all want new Storms or Bolds. Guess whose budget that goes into? Sheesh,..

mark9009
mark9009

Take their email or payroll systems down for an hour and find out how much overhead we are. We expedite profits with reliable systems.

daileyml
daileyml

but what many companies see is that they can bring in outside resources in the form of consultants/contractors to help in times of system outage. The logic I see managers using today is that it is cheaper to pay "Bob" the consultant $150 for a few hours when the outage happens, than it is to pay "Bob" the network admin $65k a year to sit there and wait for it to happen. Many organizations in this economy are willing to suffer the impact of a short-term outage if it means effectively cutting costs by cutting head-count. -Mike D http://www.daileymuse.com

daileyml
daileyml

You got it, Glenn. The issue is that management pays little attention to the value IT brings. All they know it that IT: A) adds a boat load of expense to the budget every year B) is full of expensive human capital When it comes time to begin cutbacks points A & B above come to mind for every executive at the table. Unless the IT team has done a good job at making their contributions to the bottom line known all that will matter is A & B. Heres a blog post I wrote discussing some of the ways to overcome the stigma of "A & B": http://daileymuse.com/2009/01/technical-jobs-in-a-downtrodden-economy/ -Mike D http://www.daileymuse.com

Glenn from Iowa
Glenn from Iowa

"Bob" the network admin (and/or his IT manager) had better be doing a marketing job to company management, quantifying how much money he saved by being available on site. Normally, "Bob" the network admin is not just sitting waiting for an outage, he's contributing value to the company. So make sure you are creating more value than "Bob" the contractor would, and make sure management gets the big picture of the value you create.

cbulla
cbulla

Mike, you are square on here. Usually said consultant is used in areas that the manager is not able to address or falls outside of the small staff area of expertise regarding support day to day, weekly or otherwise operations they are generally responsible for.

christopher.ramey
christopher.ramey

They are always so very far off from the truth. I WISH I was getting paid what these survey's say I should be making! They are always 10-20k off!!! I'm a System Admin. with over 12 years experience, Microsoft Certified, etc. and I'm barely making 50k!

Osiyo53
Osiyo53

Surveys such as the one Jason mentions are vast generalizations. And not really suitable for use by an individual to decide if you're paid better or worse than someone else in your particular position. The data source, validity, and verity will always be questionable. Were the folks polled truly a scientifically random sampling? Were they honest? Where did they live? Cost of living varies greatly across the U.S. For instance, I mentioned in another post that it would cost 55% more for me to live in San Francisco as versus the Twin Cities of Minnesota in order to maintain the same lifestyle. Then there is the problem of job titles and descriptions. For instance, just exactly what is a System Administrator? What is his or her duties? How large of an organization does that person work for? How many direct reports? Gad, as a check, I went to a particular job search web site and punched in a search using the generic "System Administrator" term. Nation wide search. It returned hundreds of possible matches. Reading thru a couple dozen revealed that what this or that firm defined to be a "System Administrator", the required quals, and the expected job duties varied enormously. As did pay rates where such were listed. Did the same thing on the State of Minnsota's state run job bank web site. Same, result, just smaller numbers. Huge variation in expected skills and actual job descriptions. I also found numerous instances where job descriptions matched those that would be expected of an average system administrator as most of us would understand that term ... but that wasn't the job title. Chuckle, I'm not working in a system admin job currently (have in the past). The job I am now performing doesn't even have an "official title" in the Dept of Labor's handbook, the HR handbooks, etc. I guess that officially I and at least a couple thousand others who do what I do, don't exist. But, FWIW, salary range for what I do goes from about $35,000 a year to $120,000. Depending on quals, experience, and exactly where yah live in the U.S. (due to the differences in the cost of living between this place and that). I only know that because those of us who do what I do have a sort of informal network going on, and some specific web sites where we socialize and exchange info. Myself, I just ignore and discount those nationwide salary surveys. Have no meaning at all to me, personally. I only concern myself with knowing, approximately, what someone of my skills and experience makes in the area where I live and/or am willing to commute to. I might move elsewhere in the state. Maybe, if someone motivated me enough. But I'm not leaving Minnesota. Like it here. Ex-career military, over the years I've lived all over the country. I like it here in Minnesota. I'm not going anywhere. Chuckle, once was being chased by a head hunter for a large corporation. This was back in 1992. He opened the conversation by mentioning a starting salary of $75,000. I asked him "Where?". He said I'd have to relocate to New Jersey. I replied, "Nope". He bounced up the offer to $85,000 plus some extra perks. I told him his company didn't have enough money to get me to move myself and my family to New Jersey. "Go away" At the time, I took a job for $40,000 locally. I figured that I could live as well (or better) in Minnesota on $40,000 as in New Jersey for 75 or 85 thousand ... AND wouldn't have to actually live in New Jersey. Currently I earn considerably more than that $40,000 (more like that average Jason mentioned). Recently had an offer that'd put me well over the $100,000 mark. But I'd have to move to the Washington D.C. area. That's not gonna happen. Would rather go back to that $40,000 and stay here.

Glenn from Iowa
Glenn from Iowa

Although you should probably be sending out feelers already in this economy for what jobs are out there, try browsing job ads and see what ranges there are in your local market for your job. If the survey turns out to be closer than you thought, then ask yourself why you are working where you do, rather than at company b, where they pay $x more for the same job. I'm not saying you should jump ship just for the money (there are many other factors). But if you're grousing about how little you make - do a little research; talk to your friends; talk to a recruiter or two. If nothing else, you'll get a feel for what your true market value is in your area, and who knows, maybe you apply for a job that pays a few more $$$! Or your company may be the next one announcing layoffs and you'll already have the groundwork laid.

christopher.ramey
christopher.ramey

Seems the only jobs around here right now are help desk jobs making $6-7/hour!!! I would LOVE to find a better job. Both with better pay and more fulfilling; it's just not going to happen.

IT Wiz
IT Wiz

Listen to an old timer for a moment. I have worked in Sacramento CA, Marion IN and Houston TX, medium, small and large cities in 3 reagions of the country, in 3 industries, aerospace, automotive and oil, and in 2 careers, mechanical engineering and IT, spaning 40 years, and its always the same story, although companies complain they want more experienced people, the money always goes after the low bidder (sometimes with no experience at all). Although a lot here are posting complaints about their low pays, at least most have jobs. Im not saying you cant be positive and set high standards for yourself but be realistic at the same time especially in this economy (and dont worry about those bogus surveys). I hope those in IT dont make the same mistake the UAW made and price themselfs out of jobs. If the government opens the floodgates, there will be plenty of H1Bs to take their places!

nathan.mcgee
nathan.mcgee

Are you kiddin me?? $6-7/hr for HD jobs? OMG get for real... I thought the $15-20 they offer here in NC was bad! Dude, Thats barely minimum wage!!! I suggest you ALL get out of Michigan as quickly as you can.. your state Gov and liberal socialistic laws are running everyone out of the state!

rholt
rholt

That number sounds about right. When you include Project Mgmt, Sr. Management, Engineers and Developers that moves the average. Also account for the majority of the salaries being in large cities. My Company's average (outsource IT Firm) is right around 75k.

jeff.allen
jeff.allen

A survey is only as good is it's input. My slant is that most respondents would MINIMIZE their salary so as to gain more "headroom" for further increases. Don't forget, these are categorised, so the higher wages of Managers etc, will not "blow out" the figures WRT technicians and other workers. Interesting to note, here in Oz, Micro$oft only shed ONE job (in the last round of cuts). I wonder if that has anything to do with Australia's tougher redundancy laws...

christopher.ramey
christopher.ramey

But if you believe these "surveys", I should be making around $60-65k for my experience and in my area. NOT!

jonathan.ludwig
jonathan.ludwig

You also live in Livonia Michigan. Not exactly the technical hub of the world. Although i agree these surveys always seem high, you can't look at them and expect to make the same money if you live in a small town. Even if you live next to a large city, but don't work there the pay rates are going to be different.

IT Wiz
IT Wiz

I have the same background as you and I make nowhere near 50K either! These surveys are just trying to pump up their industry and therefor their readership base.

nathan.mcgee
nathan.mcgee

You guys are both S/A's and MS Certified and not making 50k?? Um not sure why ... I see one of you is in Michigan, that might explain why... but Texas?? I dont know why but you guys have been getting a major shaft in your salaries for sometime! I have very similar experience am in NC and make over 50k... in fact I have taken a pay cut since being let go a couple of years ago from my SR Email Admin position...

christopher.ramey
christopher.ramey

Funny thing, I actually moved to Texas (Dallas area) a few years ago and was down there for about a year and a half before I finally moved back to Michigan. I couldn't find a job down there to save my life!!! Heck, I couldn't even get a job at the local grocery store or video rental place!

IT Wiz
IT Wiz

I dont know about the Michican guy but Im self employed contract. Ever since oil dropped from $150/barrel to in the 30s this town has dried up and all projects are "pending". But even before that my best year was about $45K. Competition for jobs has always been tuff here but now its impossible! Im about ready to retire to Florida so Im not really worried about it. Ill let you young guys fight for the scraps.

reisen55
reisen55

Companies may be hiring, but they can always outsource staff out and claim they have hired new replacements, either local or in distant Bangalore. This madness has long made our hiring and job retention set be more precarious. IBM is opening up two support centers in central US, which sounds great but, being IBM, they are just transferring staff from location A to B to G. No net gain. And IBM just dumped 16000 people too. As an independent consultant, I have temporarily taken a 9 to 5 job to keep myself afloat. I do not like it at all, but there it is.

VoiceOfLogic
VoiceOfLogic

This is the #1 problem with our economy today people. NO ONE wants to discuss it.

lcarliner
lcarliner

Amen to this! Why, or why, Sallie Mae are you not out there fighting the malignancy of off-shore outsourcing that is surely undermining your collateral? Why, or why, Sallie Mae do you persist in off-shore outsourcing yourself rather than giving your borrowers in job need top priority in your hiring policies? Remember the "My Little Margie" TV days in which Mr. Honeywell was forced to wash dishes in the restaurant that his party just dined in but could not pay the tab because "Margie" supposedly "misplaced his billfold? Why, Sallie Mae, are you not out there fighting for the soundness of your collateral rather than the pernicious malignancy of off-shore outsourcing is allowed to continue?

reisen55
reisen55

I have been outsouced, saw good support go bad, worked in outsourced support where a hospital network was SEVERELY compromised and patient's LIVES were at risk and cannot stand the mantra of CHEAPER,FASTER,BETTER with the attendant statement that outsourcing increases SHAREHOLDER VALUE. Keep talking about it.

SObaldrick
SObaldrick

How long have you been reading TR? Every thread appears to touch on outsourcing at some point. Les.

jalander
jalander

Accenture is who my company signed the contract. Out after 14 yrs. In my case trained replacements or no severence. Trained a 25 yr old, who spoke some english but no one else on his team did. They did not know jcl, IBM utilities, or how to support batch critical path. Hear my company is now trying to figure out what to do. Hear my ex company's clients are very , very unhappy because they can't get anything done. Oh well, they saved some money.

lcarliner
lcarliner

Being made to retrain your H1-B replacement as a condition of receiving severance is not unlike when the Nazi forced the Jewish concentration camp inmates to dig their own graves. Rather, the retraining requirement should be made ILLEGAL Pronto! This is really prima facia evidence that the H1-B visa was being obtained under egregiously false pretenses! If there is truly a "shortage" as Bill Gates claims in justification for no limits on guest worker visa that can be granted, then why should there be a need to train your replacement!

jalander
jalander

I'm hearing that my old company is having the same pains as your former company. I'm getting calls from the Business folks that are saying that the contracting company has not done anything. My team was let go in October 2008, this is Feb 2009. The only reason the whole sub=system has not went up in smoke is becasue they have NOT turned over one change. I'm hearing my old company is 700,000 hrs behind in development. The question is when will management get it?

reisen55
reisen55

140 techs and server techs were terminated and our replacements, outsourced in through BancTec and RCN, were kids who thought you could fit Lotus Notes nsf files onto a floppy disk and had resumes so poor, one of them was a pizza delivery person in past job. We had to take them around and show them what we did and they just stood in an office smiling and saying nothing. In October, 2006 over 200 servers were infected by a rampant worm. 30 days now for a new emp to get a new computer and 90 days to get a new email address. Service levels are soooooo bad. Our 1200 user office now has one (1) on-site technician, everything else is helpless desk in Bangalore. And that does not include the eight months in HELL I served in 2006 at Continuum Health Partners with First Consulting Group. THAT was even worse.

jalander
jalander

Perhaps there is a shortage in Gates' world but here in St Louis, IT folks are taking 20,000 and 30,000 dollar pay cuts just to work. I am in the mainframe environment but us old heads can learn the new stuff. Anyone think of that? Many of my friends were outraged that we had to train our replacements. We did not try to train them on how to make up jcl, or sort data, or COBOL. I pointed them to the manuals. We just tried to train them on the application process. But even that was difficult because they did not speak English except for their tech lead. Talk about multiple failure points. OMG

Glenn from Iowa
Glenn from Iowa

"IBM is opening up two support centers in central US, which sounds great but, being IBM, they are just transferring staff from location A to B to G. No net gain." That is not true. I live about an hour away from one of those centers, and they have been recruiting heavily. Perhaps they are transferring the _numbers_ of staff from location A to B, but it is not all transfers. Perhaps not enough hiring to offset the 16K laid off, but at least they are hiring in the U.S. (no offense intended to those in other countries). There was some discussion earlier about this being a global audience. If foreign outsourcing is affecting the layoffs/downturn in business, it is only a small part compared to the economy as a whole, partly caused by the mortgage banking crisis. What would you say to someone in IT in India or Bangalore? That their having a job is the cause of thousands of people being laid off in the U.S.? Perhaps in limited numbers, but for the most part, no. They are probably reading this and are either insulted, or laughing that we have no clue how to stem the tide of outsourcing. Remember, this forum is for more than U.S. readers. Okay, I probably have offended people around the world, but that's what I think.

jalander
jalander

IBM is one of the companies that outsource their jobs to India. I don't where you can get a number of how many jobs have been lost. We said when it was manufacturing oh, it only hourly workers, now that it's engineering and IT positions and salery workers, what are we saying? It took me 20 years to work my way up to be an analyst. To have the education and experience. I haven't heard of anybody in US getting jobs from India by outsourcing. Have you? Do you really believe other countries will allow their jobs to be lost like we have in the US? It is greed why we are losing these jobs. And please don't tell me about client satistaction. That was not a consideration with my former company. They just wanted the money and had no idea what to do with intellectual capital.

mark9009
mark9009

Still happens and our lawmakers (and Gates) want to bring in more because there's a shortage? Tell that to the US IT pro standing in the unemployment line this morning.

bg6638
bg6638

There IS a shortage of qualified American IT Pro's ............ who are willing to work for 3rd world wages! It's all about the bottom line!! IT is viewed as an expense which needs to be controlled at all costs!

bg6638
bg6638

IT is not an expense but an absolutely VITAL part of the cost of business ..... tell that to people like Bill Gates!!! He's only interested in seeing money coming in, not going out!!!

dick.ot
dick.ot

I know many H1Bs that do not fit your broad brush. To come to the US on an H1B my employer had to get Dept of Labor certification, and pay me equal (or more than) what they would pay a US employee. One requirement was to advertise - they did so for six months in various print and web-based venues. The most promising resume received was for somebody who could boast "weed abatement" as a primary accomplishment - for a specialized IT job. Also, back in 2003 when the wheels started to come off, many large companys let their H1s go first...

reisen55
reisen55

IT is not an expense but an absolutely VITAL part of the cost of business. We are not a commodity either.

mark9009
mark9009

These imported labor schemes are meant to lower the cost and increase profits in all fields. They come in as tourists and stay forever. Enough.

Systems Magician
Systems Magician

We hear tech companies laying off people by the thousands and yet you don't hear about what is happening with the current H1B hiring. That is because there is not one large entity that is fighting hard against it like the abortion, immigration, gun control groups out there. We need an organizaton for the voice of US IT workers. If there is such one, please let me know.

reisen55
reisen55

Nathan - are you the famous Nathan that Harvey Betan and I so warmly remember?

Glenn from Iowa
Glenn from Iowa

I don't want a union taking part of my paycheck and telling me (or my employer) what I can or cannot do. The most efficient and skilled IT workers will survive this downturn. And whether or not off-shore-outsourcing is good or bad, it is not the cause of this downturn. IT is in a unique position to create value, not be an unnecessary expense to companies, but to create value for companies. Yes, I know I repeated "create value." There are no guarantees, but I believe those of us who are focused on how we create value for our company, and are able to quantify and communicate that value to those above us, will be in the best position to survive this downturn.

nathan.mcgee
nathan.mcgee

Come on now.. Unions are not the answer...look at Michigan and the other upper midwest states where they have unions and tell me that they are better off NOW than they were years ago!?! NO they are not... unions are another reason our country is in the state we are now! Controlling immigration and off-shore-outsourcing are the keys to our IT surival! We have to become better and more efficient and more customer service oriented in order to blow those 'off shore outsourcers' outta the water!!

mark9009
mark9009

I found out about this organization from Lou Dobbs. The impact of H1B's to the US economy is staggering. And as was mentioned above, when we stop getting paid, the US economic engine grinds to a halt AND affects the global economy. I've donated to FAIRUS.ORG and proud of it. If we don't voice our opinions, we deserve to be replaced. They have lobbies working to increase the quotas. Want to improve the jobless rate? Send the illegals back. They'd do it to us if the roles were reversed.

i_security
i_security

As someone being outsourced as we speak, I am seeing a few hundred highly qualified IT people not getting paychecks, not paying US taxes, not buying US goods... We are being replaced by employees whose do NOT pay US taxes, and send the bulk of their incomes overseas. This should be illegal.

jalander
jalander

Can any corportation be trusted? Hmm, don't think so. Of course IT doesn't have unions but we have no protection. Don't forget, corporations are currently also getting a tax break if they lay off US employess, and contract overseas. What did the Congress think was going to happen to the economy? Why can't the stimlus bill use US Steel? What have they gotten us into with the unholy alliance between the corporations and the Federal government. I was taught you take care of your own first.

Glenn from Iowa
Glenn from Iowa

So, you're against protectionism. But you believe the government needs to create incentives to prevent companies from using (presumably foreign) outsourced labor, i.e. to prevent importing of labor??? Perhaps you are using a different definition than I am. Dictionary.com gives the definition of protectionism as "the theory, practice, or system of fostering or developing domestic industries by protecting them from foreign competition through duties or quotas imposed on importations." Technically, the current system is protectionistic, since it imposes quotas on visas. I'm also not sure what you mean by American Labor. Are you talking about Unions, or American citizens vs. foreign citizens on a visa, or illegal immigrants without a work visa? Unless you're talking about illegal immigrants who avoid paying taxes, even non-citizens working in the U.S. are taxpayers.

reisen55
reisen55

Affiliated Computer Services, Atlanta, GA is the contractor out Disney India. They are one of the worst of the lot, others being Computer Sciences and Accenture. There is no shortage of talent. There is a shortage of inexpensive labor though because AMERICAN talent happens to live in AMERICA where we have this little old cost of living thing.

kino.mondesir
kino.mondesir

Okay I understand that everyone is upset about Outsourcing. I too have lost my job to Outsourcing but I do not believe in protectionism. What I do believe is that the government needs to create incentives for companies that use American Labor. What should be illegal is govern either local or federal using non-citizen labor. That means contractors as well. It doesn't matter if the company is an American company. Local governments can't get around the fact they are funded with taxpaper dollars so they shouldn't be able to higher non-citizens.

MrGrumpy
MrGrumpy

I live in Burbank and know a few people in your position. From what I have heard, the outsourcing at Disney has not gone particularly well. But in any event, this decimation of IT (and many other industries) at the hands of outsourcing will be catastrophic for the USA. If nobody is employed, who is going to buy anything ? Who is going to buy a new car, a new TV go to the movies, eat out etc ? H1B is rarely used for the right reasons, it's not about finding the right skill set, it's about finding inexpensive labor.

lcarliner
lcarliner

The only real collateral that Sallie Mae has for its student loan debts is gainful employment in the chosen field of training and education at pay levels sufficient to make payments on the huge debt load. It is rather dismaying that Sallie Mae is not using its enormous lobbying power to fight abusive and questionable issuance of guest worker visas!

DBNewbie2007
DBNewbie2007

The last company I worked for would sometimes hire college grads who had student visa but not a work visa. As their manager, I would have to call people who submitted resumes for the same position to prove the student was "uniquely qualified". After I found a few people out of work who could do the same job, I told Human Resources I could not continue to call to support the college grads. When I was out of work for 5 years after a 2001 plant closure (outsourced overseas), I was extremely upset to hear about Microsoft and other companies claiming they could not find qualified individuals... I think they meant "inexpensive labor"!

Editor's Picks