- Mixed signals emanated from the technology workforce once again in May, as the overall number of jobs increased by 45,000, while the tech sector lost 4,725 jobs, according to CompTIA’s analysis of Bureau of Labor Statistics data.
- The unemployment rate for technologists remained low in May at just 2.0%, below the national unemployment rate of 3.7% across all occupations.
- The tech unemployment rate last month dropped from April’s 2.1%. Initially, CompTIA reported the April unemployment rate for tech was 2.3%, but the trade association lowered the rate after BLS revised its data.
The May numbers, released Friday, reversed the trend outlined in April, when the economy shed nearly 100,000 tech positions and the tech sector added nearly 19,000 jobs.
See-sawing monthly numbers and periodic reports of layoffs in high tech can obscure a broader movement toward workforce growth.
With only minor month-to-month fluctuations, tech sector employment and technology jobs across the economy have risen steadily in the last two years, according to CompTIA’s tracking.
"As a percentage of the overall tech workforce, monthly fluctuations remain relatively small, both on the upside with tech occupation gains and the downside with tech sector employment losses," Tim Herbert, chief research officer at CompTIA, said in an email.
"While we always want to be sensitive to the difficulties associated with job loss, the consistently low tech unemployment rate is an indication that displaced workers continue to be rehired and reabsorbed back into the tech workforce fairly quickly,” Herbert said.
More than 200,000 tech sector employees have lost their jobs since the start of the year, according to Layoffs.fyi. Job cuts continued to trickle in from the tech sector in May, even as many larger tech companies — Meta, Amazon and Microsoft among them — completed post-pandemic workforce restructurings.
Tech company job losses nevertheless amounted to just 0.1% of the industry's workforce, according to CompTIA.
Within the tech sector, losses in non-tech jobs were offset by the addition of more than 10,000 positions in IT services and custom software development and more than 2,300 in the cloud infrastructure, data processing and hosting category so far this year, CompTIA found.
Postings for future tech hiring fell to under 250,000 last month, down from nearly 300,000 in April. Of those postings, nearly 15,000 were in areas related to AI.