Growth in high-tech jobs across North Carolina appears to be over.

The number of information technology openings plunged to 3,700 in October, down 10 percent from the previous month and also fell below the daily advertised average of jobs listed in both October 2011 and October 2010, according to the North Carolina IT Job Trends report from the North Carolina Technology Association.

After returning to pre-recession job levels at nearly 6,000 in March of this year, openings have fallen sharply in six of the last seven months and are down in each of the past four months, NCTA reported.

Nationally, IT job openings fell 3 percent in October.

Noted NCTA in the report: “Year-over-year labor demand is down 6.1 percent which suggests that this year the need for additional IT talent spiked.

“Employers may now [be] taking requirements back as part of year-end preparations.”

The report, which is based on data gathered by SkillProof, a talent management firm, does suggest that hiring could pick up in 2013.

“We expect higher demand early next year to accommodate the slowly recovering economy,” the report says.

Sharp drops in demand for workers with specific skill requirements show how much the job market has declined compared to a year ago.

For example, Windows Operating System openings fell to 500 from 830 in 2011.

SQL data base jobs dropped to 490 from 740.

Java openings fell to 470 from 620.

Unix openings, meanwhile, declined to 440 from 720.

One positive sign that shows the growth in cloud computing and virtualization market: Virtualization technology jobs increased to 280 this October from 260 a year ago.