ICT unemployment still above average

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Unemployment levels in ICT have stayed above the national average despite an increase in jobs, according to the Australian Computer Society.

Unemployment levels in ICT have remained above the national average despite an increase in jobs, according to the Australian Computer Society (ACS).

An ACS annual ICT Employment survey has suggested unemployment among ACS members in 2004 was 7.2 percent. This was down from 10.3 percent in a 2003 survey but still worse than a national, overall average of 5.1 percent.

"Overall, the survey indicates what we have been saying for some time -- that job growth is trending in the right direction but it is not good news for everyone," said Edward Mandla, president of the ACS, in a statement.

Programmers and business analysts had the hardest time finding work, representing 22.2 and 17.8 percent of unemployed respondents respectively.

Project managers experienced the biggest improvement, making up 8.9 percent of the unemployment figure, down from 19.6 percent in 2003.

The internet was seen as the best source of ICT jobs by 45 percent of respondents. According to the ACS, this was at the expense of newspapers, the preferred option for only 7.9 percent of respondents.

Recruitment agencies scored well with ICT job hunters, with 22.1 percent saying their experience was either excellent or good. This figure increased from 17.9 percent in 2003.

“While the membership survey results are indicative of what is happening amongst our own membership base, they fit with the anecdotal evidence from our sector and are in line with other industry research completed in the past 12 months,” said Mandla.

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