State Unemployment – July 2016 – raises question on BLS data

State Unemployment – July 2016 – raises question on BLS data

State Unemployment – July 2016 – raises question on BLS data – The National unemployment data is supposed to provide a measure of the health of the over-all labor market.   A more granular metric is one that considers local condition – i.e. state and local unemployment. However most of this data is constantly reworked and adjusted.  So there is some question as to the value that this information provides over the short term.

High unemployment states June and July 2016

The work force participation percentage of all employees (male and female) is at 62.8% – still one of the lowest levels in 38 years. There still are just 94,333,000 people who are not in the labor force.  When this data is added to the equation some serious questions are raised.

Work Force Participation

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In July 2016 there were 6 states with an unemployment rate of over 6% versus 8 in June 2016 with over 6% Unemployment. Of the high unemployment states, Nevada has been in a high unemployment state for the past 8 years..

High unemployment states July 2016

States with the Lowest Unemployment — Full Employment States

Several states have very low unemployment rates.   In June there were 15 states that we considered high unemployment states. Adjustments were made to the number so that last month there were 13.

Full employment states July 2016

Of the 13 full employment nine states had higher unemployment rates in July than in June: Massachusetts, Arkansas, Minnesota, Utah, Idaho, Hawaii, Nebraska, and South Dakota.

H-1B Makes up for poor educational system

H-1B Makes up for poor educational system

H-1B Makes up for poor educational system< according to industry leaders.

Massachusetts law prohibits employers from asking about applicants’ salaries

Massachusetts law prohibits employers from asking about applicants’ salaries

Massachusetts has enacted the nation’s first law prohibiting employers from asking about applicants’ salaries before making employment offers.

The new state law, which Republican Gov. Charlie Baker signed on Aug. 1, will require employers to offer a compensation figure upfront, rather than relying upon what the applicant made at a previous position. The requirements will not go into effect until July 1, 2018. Job applicants will not be compelled to disclose past or current salary or wages, but can still volunteer past salary information.

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The first-of-its-kind bipartisan law, S. 2119, was heralded by supporters as another avenue to strengthen equal pay laws. The law’s proponents said banning pre-offer wage disclosures addressed the subtle factors that can affect compensation decisions. As well, supporters said that using salary history as a means of determining how much a potential hire could be paid was unfair to women, arguing that it allowed a continuation of a pattern that statistically paid them less.

Another provision of the law requires that women receive pay equal to that of men in the same position, as well as men who perform work “comparable” to them. The Massachusetts law incorporates a wider standard than many other state equal pay acts. Other recently passed state equal pay laws, such as California’s 2015 equal pay measure, likely will depend on the courts to practically define “comparable” worth in the workplace.

Finally, the new Massachusetts law also addresses salary transparency. Employers will not be allowed to prohibit employees from informing others how much they are compensated. Supporters argued that transparency for wages would better identify gender pay disparities.

The bill passed the state legislature unanimously and had the support of several business organizations, including the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce.

Similar attempts at introducing novel procedures to address equal pay have inspired copy-cat legislation in other state legislatures. Several states this year attempted to pass some form of equal pay legislation but the Massachusetts action is the first one to become law.

Android beats Apple in application development war

Android beats Apple in application development war

Android beats Apple in application development war — Android is increasing its lead for developers, eroding the long-standing maxim of creating apps for “iPhone first.”

Career Planning Template
Career Planning

The Developer Economics: State of the Developer Nation Q3 2016 reports Android now has a whopping 79 percent “mindshare” among mobile developers, the highest for any platform the company has measured since it began its quarterly surveys back in 2010. The record comes as the mindshare for iOS has consistently tracked at 51 percent to 55 percent since 2013 (although that figure rises to 61 percent for professional developers).

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More important, perhaps, almost half (47 percent) of professional developers now consider Android their primary platform, up seven points in just six months. Apple, meanwhile, is going in the opposite direction. The number of mobile developers who consider iOS their primary platform dropped eight points, from 39 percent to 31 percent.

Both in an individual’s personal career planning and an enterprise’s staffing, promotion and compensation it is important to have benchmarks on the levels that individuals are at. To that end, one of the best objective ways to meet this goal is to have formal job descriptions and clear paths for promotion and compensation.

IT Spending Flat for 2016

IT Spending Flat for 2016

IT spending flat for 2015 as compared with 2015 according to a report published last week.  Interestingly the two areas that saw the greatest reduction in spend were equipment (down 5.3% on top of a reduction of 4.6% in the prior year) and communications (down 1.4%  and 9.2% in the prior year.

Cumulatively that is over a 10% reduction in both areas.  Now when you consider that planning is going on right now for 2017 – what does that imply.

IT-Spending Flat

First, there will be pressure for “new” hardware as equipment has not been replaced that is approaching the end of its useful life.  Second if that happens there will be further pressure to keep IT salaries down as well as head count.

With that in mind, Janco is in the process of forecasting the net number of jobs in the IT job Market for the remainder of this year.

Last month the forecast was that there would be 76,500 new jobs created this year for the domestic IT job market.

IT Job Market Forecast - June 2016
Janco’s IT Job Market Forecast – June 2016

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Full employment states unemployment rate rises

Full employment states lose ground

Full employment states lose ground as 9 of the 15 states have higher unemployment rates in June than in May.  They are : Iowa, Utah, Kansas, Colorado, Maine, Hawaii, Vermont, New Hampshire, and South Dakota.

States Full Employment Compare May versus June
Full Employment States – June 2016

That is not a good omen for the rest of the year as we move into the months where unemployment tends to rise.

Add on to that some of these states are “contested” in the election that is coming up shortly

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The National Unemployment Rate is pro-ported to go but the participation rate is the lowest it has been in the last 30 years.  Some analysts say the true unemployment rate  is closer to 15% than 5%.

National Unemployment rate
Labor Force Participation Rate

IT Job Market Employment Trends

The IT job market grew last month by 34,200 jobs last month. This more than negates the loss of 19,400 reported for May (adjusted from an orginally reported loss of 27,700 last month). Over the past 12 months 97,200 IT jobs were created according to the lastest BLS data.

Top 10 Wearable Issues

Top 10 Wearable Issues

Top 10 Wearable Issues – Over 33% of all organizations surveyed by Janco have revealed they have more than 5,000 connected devices. Add to that, Cisco predicts there will be more than 600 million wearable devices in use by 2020.

These facts present a set of challenges for CIOs and IT enterprises of all sizes.

  1. Easy physical access to Data
  2. Records management, retention, and destruction
  3. Business continuity is significantly more complex
  4. Photos, Videos and Audio can be captured without anyone knowing it
  5. Instant access to outside Wi-Fi and cellular systems facilitates rapid dissemination
  6. Insecure wireless connectivity
  7. Lack of encryption
  8. Lack of formal policies with limited regulation or compliance –
  9. Software and Firmware version control
  10. Current MDM Policies Don’t Cover Wearables

Read On…

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IT Hiring Rebounds in June, but Overall Growth Remains Slow

IT Hiring Rebounds in June, but Overall Growth Remains Slow

IT hiring rebounds in June, reversing a steep drop in May (much of which was attributed to Verizon strike by 40,000 workers – 17,000 telecommunication) but signaling continued softness in the technology job market as firms cope with uncertainty from the upcoming U.S. presidential election and the United Kingdom’s decision to leave the European Union.

IT hiring rebounds
IT hiring rebounds

U.S. employers added 34,200 information technology jobs in June, following a loss of 19,400 positions in May, according to an analysis of Bureau of Labor Statistics data by consulting firm Janco Associates Inc. The June figure is up significantly from the same month a year ago, when 6,800 jobs were added.

About 46,500 IT jobs have been created year-to-date, down from 69,400 at this time last year. Growth in IT jobs hit a five-year low in April, CIO Journal reported.

Janco projects a net decrease in the size of the IT job market this year. The firm estimates 76,500 jobs will be added at year’s end, compared to 112,500 in 2015.

“At the beginning of the year people were much more optimistic,” said M. Victor Janulaitis, Janco’s CEO. Last month’s uncertainty surrounding the upcoming U.S. presidential candidates and questions over the implications of a Brexit scenario prompted many firms to become more cautious across the board. ” Everyone’s saying we’re really slowing down this summer.”

That means companies may not fill IT roles left open by retiring baby boomers and may cut back on contractors and consultants. Unessential technology upgrades without a clear return-on-investment may be tabled for the time being.

The forecast is not without bright spots. Companies have been hiring application developers and designers, Mr. Janulaitis said, although most have been internal. And a survey from Janco this month found that average compensation for all IT professionals has increased to $82,775 in 2016 from $ 82,246 a year ago.

IT Median Salaries
IT Median Salaries

Janco’s employment findings are based on an analysis of a basket of IT-related jobs data drawn from the Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The broader economy also rebounded in June, adding a seasonally adjusted 287,000 jobs. That followed a dismal gain of 11,000 jobs in May.

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Top 10 Security Predictions

Top 10 Security Predictions

Top 10 Security Predictions – Many organizations fail to realize the benefits of security information management due to the often exhaustive financial and human resource costs of implementing and maintaining the software. However, Janco’s’ Security Manual Template – the industry standard – provides the infrastructure tools to manage security, make smarter security decisions and respond faster to security incidents and compliance requests within days of implementation.

Top 10 Security Predictions from Janco Associates are:

  1. Over the next several years almost all of vulnerabilities exploited by hackers will continue to be ones known by security and IT professionals for at least one year.

    Top 10 Security Predictions
    Top 10 Security Predictions
  2. Robotics will take over many security operations. China will lead the way with 30-40K students training in universities with this technology. US will lag for several years.
  3. Shadow IT will be responsible for over one third of attacks experienced by enterprises.
  4. The need to prevent data breaches from public clouds will drive many organizations to develop data security governance programs.
  5. Over the long term enterprises engaged in application development will secure applications by adopting application security self-testing, self-diagnosing and self-protection technologies.
  6. Future cloud-based providers will include network firewall, secure web gateway (SWG) and web application firewall (WAF) platforms in their offerings.
  7. Identity as a service (IDaaS) implementations the focus of several new companies.
  8. Use of passwords and tokens in will drop 55%, due to the introduction of bio-metrics.
  9. A majority of IoT device manufacturers will not be able to address threats from weak authentication practices.
  10. More than 25% of identified enterprise attacks will involve IoT.

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Info Tech Executive Salaries have recovered from 2008 downturn

Info Tech Executive Salaries have recovered from 2008 downturn

Info Tech Executives Salaries for most IT executives have recovered from the downturn of 2008.  If you a CSO in a large enterprise then you have seen your salary rebound by 14.56%. This has been drawn for the Info Tech Executive Salaries data base that is maintained by Janco Associates.

More data is available in the full 2016 Mid-Year IT Salary Survey that is published by Janco Associates.

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Jobs where the salaries for IT executive have not recovered are limited to three (3) executive positions in large enterprises.  VP Administration (down 2.25%), VP Consulting Services (down 9.0%), and Director Productions and Data Centers (down 0.75

Info Tech Executive Salaries - Large Enterprises
Info Tech Executive Salaries – Large Enterprises
http://www.e-janco.com/salary.htm
Info Tech Executives – Mid-Size Enterprises

These are findings from the 2016 Mid Year IT Salary Survey.  Other interesting observations for the survey are that salaries for the last 12 months for most IT staff, other than executives have remained flat.

Median compensation for IT Pros
Median compensation for IT Pros

The data shows that CIOs and their bosses value the upper level decision making positions while they view the lower level positions as a focus of cost.

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Other findings from the latest IT Salary Survey are:

  • In 2015 the IT job market grew by 112,000 versus 129,400 in 2014 and 74,900 and 21,800 in 2013 and 2012 respectively according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
  • IT compensation for all IT Professionals has increased by 0.64% in the last 12 months.
  • IT executive compensation across all organizations has shown another increase. The mean compensation for IT executives in large enterprises is now $147,260 (up 1.44%) and $131,384 (up 1.50%) in mid-sized enterprises.
  • Positions in highest demand are all associated with security, training, large data center management, distributed/mobile system project management, quality control, BYOD implementation, capacity planning and service level improvement.
  • Over the long term IT executives have fared better in large companies than mid-sized companies.
  • On shore outsourcing has peaked and companies are looking to bring IT operations back into their direct control and reduce operating costs.
  • Mandated requirements for records management systems and electronic medical records have increased the demand for quality control staff and custodians (librarians) of mechanized records.
  • Companies are continuing to refine the benefits provided to full time IT professionals. Though benefits such as health care are available to 80%, IT professionals are now paying a greater portion of that cost.

State unemployment numbers mask correct unemployment rate

State unemployment numbers mask correct unemployment rate

State unemployment numbers mask correct unemployment rate as they do not adjust for the number of individuals who have dropped out of the labor market.

State unemployment
State unemployment number do not reflect the number of people who have dropped out of the labor market.

In May 2016 there were 8 states with an unemployment rate of over 6% versus 7 in February 2016 with over 6% Unemployment. Alabama and Illinois have unemployment go up in the past 12 months as opposed to the other 4 states where unemployment levels have improved.

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South Dakota and New Hampshire had the lowest jobless rates in May, 2.5 percent and 2.7 percent, respectively. The rate in Arkansas (3.8 percent) set a new series low. Alaska had the highest unemployment rate, 6.7 percent. In total, 16 states had unemployment rates significantly lower than the U.S. figure of 4.7 percent, 15 states and the District of Columbia had higher rates, and 19 states had rates that were not appreciably different from that of the nation.

Job Market grim for Information Technology professionals

 Job Market grim for Information Technology professionals

Job Market grim for Information Technology professionals as it is leading the way to fewer prospects for new jobs being created.  Just last month there were eight (8) states with unemployment rates in excess of 6%.  That along with the loss of 27,700 jobs makes many wonder if we are facing a possibility of a new recession.

US job market grim
8 states have unemployment in excess of 6% and that is with 94 million individuals who have have dropped out of the labor market making the true unemployment number closer to 13% – depression era levels,
 Job Market grim for Information Technology professionals
IT job market grim – Janco may revise its forecast for the IT job market to shrink if this trend continues.

Job Market grim for Information Technology professionals as 2016 fall behind 2015 in creating new IT jobs

IT Job Market growth is 57,300 worse in 2016 than 2015 as of May
If the loss of jobs continues at this rate all of the recovery achieved in the IT job market over the past several quarters could be lost.
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IT Job Market Shrinks

Job Market Shrinks for IT Pros

IT Job market shrinks in May.  Approximately 27,700 jobs disappeared, with most of those jobs being related to telecommunications.

IT job market shrinks
IT jobs disappear – with 37,200 in the Telecommunications field

That along with a comparison with the number of IT jobs created in 2015 paints a fairly bleak picture.

IT job market growth slower than prior year
IT job creation fall behind 2015 levels – 57,300 fewer new jobs this year than last

There is an acceleration in the rate of slowdown in the IT Job Market. If this continues, as we think it will, there is a probability that there could potentially be a net decrease in the size of the IT Job Market in 2016. Janco has already lowered our best case forecast for net new IT jobs for the balance of this year and have reduced our prior forecast of 87,700 to 40,300.

This is the worst employment market in the past 15 years. Given that is the case why are H-1B visas continuing to be issued for IT professionals?

Foreign Assignments

Foreign Assignments Considerations

Foreign Assignments – Taking an overseas assignment can be a great career boost. There are some major issues that you need to consider.

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Taxes

The US is the only country in the world that taxes their citizens on their WORLDWIDE income. So even though you may earn every penny in other country on your local contract, the US wants to tax you for it. Fortunately there is a “foreign earned income tax” exclusion that you can apply for that will prevent the US from taxing you for the first $80,000 but above that value you will be taxed by both countries.

Keep a US address – find someone in your family who you can have all of your mail forwarded to and whose address you can use on your US tax forms.

Foreign Banking

The US requires that if you have a foreign bank account every year you must file a form with the Treasury Department to list all the foreign bank account numbers you own. Foreign branches of banks do not talk to their branches in the US. For all intents and purposes, they are totally different banks. You can wire money back and forth between your accounts (with associated fees), however it is easier to live with the separate accounts.

Moving

Have your movers come and estimate the volume of your household goods and then you get a feel for how much will fit in a new “smaller” place.

If you plan on coming back to the US, might leave any valuable goods (antiques, paintings, etc) with your family. Boats have been known to sink; containers have fallen off ships in bad weather, and while these items are insured, they could be lost forever.

Leave most of your electronics in the US. Your TV, stereo, microwave, washer/dryer, blender, even alarm clock, hair dryers, and telephones will not work on the power in many foreign countries.  The one exception is a DVD player – note your US DVDs will not work on an foreign DVD player as your DVDs are coded for the US.

Your goods will take 6-8 weeks to come from the US by boat – so be sure to negotiate into your contract that they put you into temporary housing or a hotel until your goods arrive and provide you with a car. I

Car and Driving

It is not cost effective to ship a car. Sell your car and buy a new one in your new country.

The US does not use the “international road signs” so you can find these on the Internet and study them before you arrive. Try to get your hands on an foreign countries’ driving manual before you arrive as the rules of the road are different in almost every country.

Bureaucracy

Getting a work permit, temporary resident’s visa, your driver’s license, and local ID in foreign country is a paperwork frenzy. Get as many of your personal documents together and organized up front (birth certificate, passport, immunizations, etc).

Networking

When you arrive in the foreign country typically you know virtually nobody. It is critical that you find a group of people soon after arriving. Type “Americans (country name)” into Goggle and find some local groups. These groups help you to meet other Americans who are in my exact same situation and who have already crossed the hurdles that you are just going over. These clubs often have “Newcomer” events that will welcome you to the area or subgroups (e.g. American Rotary, Mothers of Young Children, Retirees, Working Women’s Group, etc) that will help you almost immediately find other Americans in similar situations to yours.

Paperwork

Have a power of attorney and a will before you leave the US. Have an the attorney look into what could be done to make these documents legally recognizable in the foreign country.

Renting your Home in the US

You should find a fantastic property management company that does background checks (criminal) and credit checks on potential renters. Also, get the highest end rental insurance and fire insurance you can buy with replacement cost adjusted for inflation.

For a more complete presentation of these considerations go to http://goo.gl/8L4ICw.

10 best practices electronic meetings

10 best practices electronic meetings

10 best practices electronic meetings
Travel Off-Site Meeting Policy

10 best practices electronic meetings have been identified by Janco Associates, Inc.  They are:

  1. Have an agenda that is available to all attendees before the meeting
  2. Have a process to validate that the devices in use by users will work with the electronic meeting application
  3. Test the meeting technology with all attendees well in advance of the meeting
  4. Have a specific start time
  5. Be aware of time zones that meeting attendees will be in
  6. Have a dress code including background for meeting attendees to follow
  7. Send electronic invitation which require a confirmation and put the meeting in the electronic calendars of all attendees
  8. Have a common secure location where share documents are available to all attendees
  9. Record the meeting and comments for others to review if they are not able to attend
  10. After the meeting send a summary of the meeting including next steps, tasks assigned, and when the next follow-up meeting will take place.

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