The Skinny blog is written by Rick Smith, editor and co-founder of WRAL Tech Wire and business editor of

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. – If you are among the thousands looking for work in North Carolina’s information technology job sector you may be in for an even longer wait.

So warns the North Carolina Technology Association in its latest jobs report.

While the daily average of advertised IT job openings increased slightly in June, NCTA says that IT job demand has peaked. Demand isn’t likely to increase until “general economic growth is demonstrated.”

And who honestly knows when – or even IF – that will occur.

“We believe that demand for IT professionals in the state has peaked and will only expand again after general economic growth is demonstrated,” NCTA said in the North Carolina IT Job Trends report for July.

Openings increased 1 percent to 5,140 in June from 5,090 in May.

The total is still well below the 5,510 in April and the near-6,000 total in March.

Nationally, openings for IT jobs were even worse, declining 3.7 percent, says the report, which is based on data provided by SkillProof, a talent management firm.

While the report notes that the slight increase is “encouraging since the job market gets softer during the summer months,” the authors add: “Nevertheless as stated before, there is no reason to be too optimistic in the current economic situation.”

A year ago, job openings averaged 4,090. Two years ago, the total was 3,570.

So at least some progress has been made.

But if IT demand has peaked, not only will it be harder for people to find work but it also will be more difficult for those who are suffering in their current situation and are looking for anyway out.

Jobs Demand Breakdown

Demand was up considerably for certain skill sets.

Most needed were systems engineers and support at 1,300 – up 70 from a year ago.

However, demand soared for software developers to 1,040 from 590

Plus, IT management jobs were up to 1,040 from 750.

However, sales and marketing openings were down to 230 from 270, and hardware engineering jobs slipped to 140 from 210.

A mixed bag, at best.