EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA


July 28, 2013

Tech-sector job cuts surge, driven by shift toward tablets


Fortunately for tech workers, plenty of doors are opening in emerging fields, said Logan Knight, executive recruiter, IT division for Redfish Technology.

Knight said his Hailey, Idaho-based company, which works largely with Silicon Valley employers, has seen a decline in requests for hardware developers for desktop computers, software developers and for employees with alternative energy expertise.

However, he said the company also has seen consistent requests for tablet and mobile interface developers, software engineers, data analysts, security professionals and other high-tech positions throughout the year.

“The shift away from current technologies toward others making new technologies is making job placements go through the roof almost,” Knight said.

Robert Biederman, co-founder of Cambridge, Mass.-based Hourly Nerd, agreed that the cuts weren’t affecting the number of placements his company has made.

He said Hourly Nerd, which links MBA students with small to medium-sized businesses and organizations for hourly work, regularly sees requests for workers with technical talent who can boost sales through digital marketing and sales strategies. Sales, marketing and other fields where software can be used as a service are good ways for someone exiting a career in computers to keep one foot in the tech sector, Biederman said.

“Somebody who has experience working with clients as part of their technical job, while one job may not be for you, maybe you can find a job helping customers having problems with products or try to working on the marketing side. It’s a matter of how you’re representing yourself,” he said.

Challenger agreed the year’s losses could amount to more of a workforce shuffle than throwing in the towel on thousands of employees.

“If sales of equipment, software and services do slow, expect more companies to react with planned layoffs,” he said. “The good news is that these workers’ skills are in demand, particularly those experienced in data analytics, cloud computing, systems architecture, information security and software engineering.”

Reach Pittsburgh Post-Gazette writer Deborah M. Todd at dtodd@post-gazette.com. Distributed by Scripps Howard News Service, www.shns.com.

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