IT jobs fared worse than many other professional occupations last year, according to recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
While the unemployment rate for all professional occupations was 4.5% in 2010, all but two categories of tech workers exceeded that number. Doing better than average: database administrators (with the lowest rate of the categories measured, at 2.9%) and network systems/data communications analysts. Overall employment for computer and math jobs was 5.2%.
[ See related: As cloud grows, IT hiring flatlines ]
2010 was an especially tough year to be a computer support specialist, with joblessness hitting 7.7%.
In contrast, last year's unemployment rate was 4.8% for aerospace engineers, 1.5% for lawyers and 1.2% for pharmacists.
One thing many tech workers don't seem to be doing in the current job market is striking out on their own, either as freelancers or contract workers. Self-employment levels are significantly lower for computer/math jobs than for all professional occupations, with the notable exception of network systems and data communications analysts.
Tables below the graphic are sortable by clicking column headers
Tech unemployment rates
|All computer and mathematical occupations||2.1||2.6||5.2||5.2|
|Computer and information systems managers||1.3||2.1||4.3||5.0|
|Computer scientists and systems analysts||2.2||2.3||6.1||5.9|
|Computer software engineers||1.8||1.7||4.5||4.6|
|Computer support specialists||3.9||3.9||6.2||7.7|
|Network and computer systems administrators||2.3||3.0||7.0||5.4|
|Network systems and data communications analysts||1.6||3.0||5.1||4.4|
|All professional and related occupations||2.1||2.7||4.4||4.5|
Tech self-employment rates
|All computer and mathematical occupations||5.1%||5.4%||5.5%||5.6%|
|Computer and information systems managers||3.6%||4.2%||2.8%||3.2%|
|Computer scientists and systems analysts||7.2%||7.2%||9.4%||8.8%|
|Computer software engineers||2.8%||3.6%||2.9%||2.9%|
|Computer support specialists||1.5%||2.6%||0.8%||1.6%|
|Network and computer systems administrators||1.4%||1.8%||3.4%||1.3%|
|Network systems and data communications analysts||11.5%||13.1%||12.8%||15.1%|
|All professional and related occupations||8.5%||8.2%||8.5%||8.5%|
Sharon Machlis is online managing editor at Computerworld. Her e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org. You can follow her on Twitter @sharon000, on Facebook or by subscribing to her RSS feeds:
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