Information Technology Job Market Shows Severe Decline in Manhattan, Slowing Decline in Westchester


Contact: Bill Caldwell, Office of Public Information, Pace University, 212-346-1597,


New York, NY – January 27, 2009 – The rates of decline in information technology job openings in Manhattan and Westchester County slowed somewhat in several categories during the fourth quarter, according to the fourth quarter Pace/SkillPROOF IT Job Index Report (PSII), out today.

The brightest area was demand for network administrators in Westchester County, where the trend turned positive. For software engineers in Westchester, both systems specialists and applications experts, the downward trends of the past three quarters leveled off.

The decline was most pronounced in Manhattan, where the PSII dropped for the 3rd consecutive quarter if one discounts a one point increase in the 2nd quarter. The Index registered 44 for the final quarter of 2008 against 88 in the 3rd quarter and 94 at the beginning of the year.

The PSII is a composite index that provides a snapshot of IT job openings at major firms in separate reports for Manhattan and Westchester County. The 11 standard IT job categories are those defined by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

In Manhattan, of the 11 categories, 10 had a negative slope but did not worsen. Of the 10, the steepest drop was seen in the market for Software Engineers, Systems. One category defied the trend, that of Computer Programmers, where the average trend line remained relatively flat and the rate of decline slowed.

In Westchester, the overall IT employment market slowed its steep decline and dropped only moderately, from 63 to 53. Of the 11 categories, one showed a substantial increase, three exhibited a slower rate of decline, five remained flat and two declined. The best performance was registered by Network Administrators which reversed its year-long decline and turned positive. Also, the category of Software Engineers – both Systems Specialists and Applications Specialists, showed improvement.

“While the economy continues to depress the job market, including IT, businesses are taking stock of how to do ‘more for less’,” said Judy Arteche-Carr, chair of the Society for Information Management’s NY Chapter, in a sidebar within the quarterly reports. “Technology will be a factor for smart business since it creates new opportunities and enables them to manage change.

“Some SIM/NY CIOs have indicated that the IT job market will be relatively flat in 2009, maintaining core IT jobs and managing the need for new hires with business knowledge and IT skills in emerging technologies. In the long run, demand for IT jobs is expected to increase once the economy picks up.

Arteche-Carr added: “Students should certainly take up IT-related courses and disciplines, as there is a tremendous ‘future potential in IT’.”

The reports are available at

The Index partners. The PSII was developed and is calculated by Farrokh Hormozi, PhD, a professor of economics and public administration in Pace University’s Dyson College of Arts and Sciences. It is based on labor market data showing actual, listed openings that is provided by Henning Seip of SkillPROOF, Inc. The index is produced under the auspices of Pace’s Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems.

For 102 years Pace University has produced thinking professionals by providing high quality professional education resting on a firm base of liberal learning, amid the advantages of the New York metropolitan area. A private university, Pace has campuses in New York City and Westchester County, New York, enrolling nearly 13,000 students in bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral programs in its Lubin School of Business, Dyson College of Arts and Sciences, Lienhard School of Nursing, School of Education, School of Law, and Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems.

SkillPROOF Inc. is a technology firm specializing in job market research. Headquartered in Bridgeport, Connecticut, since 2003 it has tracked and analyzed job openings from brand name employers in the United States, using proprietary Internet technology.

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