The share of IT jobs in the United States has grown eight times faster than all other jobs in the past decade, according to a study from the University of British Columbia and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).
While traditional manufacturing jobs declining due to automation and offshoring, the researchers say, IT-intensive manufacturing jobs increased substantially, boosting productivity like never before.
The amount of IT jobs grew by 19.5% between 2004 and 2017, while other occupations only grew by 2.4%. The study also found that while most jobs are impacted by a slowdown in employment and wage gains, IT jobs have successfully avoided this problem.
The evolution of information technology has changed the nature of employment in almost every sector, creating a greater demand for workers with computing and technical expertise, resulting in widespread talent shortage.
“Companies often report troubles finding enough workers for IT-intensive tasks,” said MIT’s Christos Makridis, the study’s co-author. “This suggests the presence of a skills gap for jobs with digital and technical requirements. The insufficient number of job candidates able to perform complex IT tasks suggests the possibility of workers’ mismatches in the labor market.”
Meanwhile, the use of IT has generated a lot of data, with the cost of collecting and processing data declining with each passing day. Thanks to the endless flow of data, “every company is going to turn into a data science company, whether they like it or not,” Makridis added. “That is only going to raise the demand for information technology workers.”