Job market still simmers

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Australia's Olivier Internet Job Index has climbed steeply, growing 4.90 percent in November.

Australia's Olivier Internet Job Index (IJI) has climbed steeply, growing 4.90 percent in November.

In a statement, Robert Olivier, director at the Olivier Group, said firms were still hiring "enthusiastically" -- although overall data implied "the economy (was) coming off the boil."

Whilst IJI results showed the raw number of job ads on a downwards curve for the first time in six months, seasonal adjusted figures and trend lines for November achieved "historical highs", according to the Group.

Is the tide set to turn for Australia's job market, or is the current slump in ads merely symptomatic of lassitude in the run up to the Christmas? Olivier thinks so. "Job ads will dip in December, and we'll need to wait until early next year for the bounce back," he said.

According to Oliver, IT professionals, and especially those considering a career in the field, should have particular cause to celebrate this season. IT&T is reportedly up 5.97 percent -- a striking increase of 81.62 percent on November last year when his Group was advising techies to log off their PCs and head to the beach for the summer.

"While the demand for IT undergraduate courses is reported to be falling, now is the ideal time to get into the industry," Olivier speculates. "The countercyclical view is that if IT enrolments are going down, in three years time we won't have the graduates the industry is demanding."

"We also know that while the NAB is laying off its IT people in Melbourne, the Commonwealth Bank is hiring in Sydney for the CommSec IT project. There's a trend for employers to be demanding more than just IT skills, they're increasingly looking for specialised business knowledge. IT professionals who've worked in retail banking are especially in demand," he added.

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