CIOs say help desk and networking jobs are experiencing strong growth

A survey of 270 Canadian CIOs has revealed that the hottest jobs in IT are in the help desk/end-user support field and in the networking arena.

Robert Half Technology International Inc., which conducted the survey over the last fiscal quarter, found that of seven speciality areas ranked by the CIOs, help desk/end-user support was cited by 18 per cent of the IT executives as the field experiencing the strongest growth. In the networking space, it was 17 per cent and in application development, 16 per cent. The results were released in the firm’s latest Hot Jobs Report.

The three top-rated jobs as far as growth in the networking arena were in network administration, security analysis and network engineering.

When asked why these jobs are in such high demand, Stephen Mill, a regional manager for Robert Half Technology in Toronto, said it is easier and less expensive for companies to upgrade and maintain what they currently have as opposed to spending money on new equipment. Specifically, he zeroed in on security as a particularly hot area to be working in, as companies today are more concerned about security access issues, and disaster and data recovery.

“This fatalistic approach to the protection of data in your system has created a lot more jobs in networking,” he said. “If you’re skilled in security and have a very strong networking background, that’s in demand today.”

That sentiment was echoed by Cam Robitaille, who was a PC and networking specialist at Toronto-based Compel Technology Inc. before his promotion to a partner and production manager at the same company. Robitaille has worked in the field for three years, starting as a computer technician who moved into the networking area through professional growth, personal interest and self-study.

“Companies are hiring more networking professionals with the ability to secure existing networks,” he said.

Focusing on building and providing networking support for businesses in the property management and medical industries, Robitaille said that in the three years he’s worked in the networking arena, he’s seen security issues come to the forefront.