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What 2008's Hiring Outlook Says About Hiring Trends

What 2008's Hiring Outlook Says About Hiring Trends

John Rossheim: Monster Senior Contributing Writer

September 09, 2009

Admitedly, 2009 is not 2008, but what does looking back a year tell us about the emerging labor market? As we started 2008 the hot jobs were quantitative. In fact, it’s been said that 2008 was the year of the quant.

By quant, we mean not just quantitative analysts, those brainiacs of finance who drive many a hedge fund’s oversized returns — and occasionally help set off market crises like the recent mortgage-backed securities meltdown.

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No, for 2008, we had the entire range of creative workers who excel in the logical and mathematical in mind, for they are in intense and increasing demand in fields like systems design, electronic engineering, accounting and, yes, finance.

Read on to see how your corner of the economy was slated to fare in the new year.

Finance and Accounting

And speaking of quantitative analysis, for financial number crunchers, the globalization of business means the internationalization of the war for their talent.

“The demand for accounting and tax professionals is outweighing resources, across the US and in China, the UK and Russia,” says Eileen Raymond, executive director of experienced-hire recruiting at accounting firm KPMG. “Next year will be consistent with 2007; we plan to hire several thousand employees. We’re looking for CPAs and professionals with advanced degrees, law degrees.”

And as demand for these services rises, new American entrants to the field are dwindling. “There are fewer and fewer students obtaining these degrees,” says Hope Wilson, a vice president at Snelling Professional Services.

IT Programming, Systems and Databases

Offshoring of some programming work notwithstanding, prospects for information technology employment in 2008 are basically strong.

“The mortgage industry and related businesses are taking a beating here in South Florida, but commercial property hasn’t been too bad,” says Steve Kalisher, executive vice president at recruiter Steven Douglas Associates, which places IT professionals ranging from programmers, database administrators and network administrators to CIOs. “There’s a lot of action in the service sector, and healthcare is big down here.”