IT Employment and Innovation Fostering Recovery

Posted by Pamela Passman
Corporate Vice President, Global Corporate Affairs

While employment in the overall U.S. economy shrank from 2008 to 2009, the number of jobs in the IT sector held steady, according to data released Tuesday by the U. S. Census Bureau.  This finding supports the results of earlier studies that demonstrated how IT employment, and investment in innovation, will contribute to the economic recovery in the U.S. and globally. 

IDC found that jobs in the U.S. IT sector will grow at a rate of 1.6 percent annually through 2013, adding more than a million new family wage jobs and creating almost 13,000 new IT businesses — at the same time overall employment shrinks.  The same study found that the 125,000 companies (most of them small and locally owned) in the Microsoft community of partners in the U.S. generated more than $169 billion in revenues for themselves in 2009.  The vast majority of these revenues remained in local communities to fuel further growth, opportunity, and innovation.  These Microsoft partners accounted for 36 percent of total U.S. IT employment and 39 percent of IT-related taxes.

A 2010 study by Robert Atkinson and Scott Andes of the Information Technology & Innovation Foundation found that the growth in IT employment between 1998 and 2008 grew by 26 percent, when overall employment grew by 6 percent.   

These employment trends point to the important contributions of the continued growth of IT and the investment in innovation to the economic recovery and sustainable growth of U.S. companies.  For instance, cloud computing represents the next wave of innovation, and IDC estimates that, by the end of 2013, cloud computing will have contributed more than $166 billion in net new business revenues to the U.S. economy.

The magnitude of this boost to the economy underscores how important it is for the public and private sectors to work together to create an environment conducive to innovation, the creation of jobs, and economic opportunity.

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