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Claudia Imhoff

Welcome to my blog.

This is another means for me to communicate, educate and participate within the Business Intelligence industry. It is a perfect forum for airing opinions, thoughts, vendor and client updates, problems and questions. To maximize the blog's value, it must be a participative venue. This means I will look forward to hearing from you often, since your input is vital to the blog's success. All I ask is that you treat me, the blog, and everyone who uses it with respect.

So...check it out every week to see what is new and exciting in our ever changing BI world.

About the author >

A thought leader, visionary, and practitioner, Claudia Imhoff, Ph.D., is an internationally recognized expert on analytics, business intelligence, and the architectures to support these initiatives. Dr. Imhoff has co-authored five books on these subjects and writes articles (totaling more than 150) for technical and business magazines.

She is also the Founder of the Boulder BI Brain Trust, a consortium of independent analysts and consultants (www.BBBT.us). You can follow them on Twitter at #BBBT

Editor's Note:
More articles and resources are available in Claudia's BeyeNETWORK Expert Channel. Be sure to visit today!


I recently read two very opposing articles regarding IT hiring. One was an InformationWeek article on a report from Robert Half Technology that was incredibly optimistic about the hiring plans of CIOs. This article claims these plans were at the highest levels in three years. The other article appearing on the exact same date in the exact same magazine (InformationWeek) claimed that Gartner Inc. research predicts all is doom and gloom and that the demand for IT workers is in fact shrinking. Seems to me that InformationWeek is getting really mixed signals... In any case, you decide which report you believe -- then let me know, OK?

Let’s start with the good news. According to the Robert Half report, 14 of the CIOs polled expect to add IT staff in third quarter of this year and only 3% expect cutbacks. That’s a net gain of 11% and is the most optimistic hiring expectation from CIOs since third quarter 2002.

It appears the hiring binge is regional. If you live in New England, life is really looking up. Twenty-four percent of the CIOs from New England plan to increase their hiring. The report reports this is possibly due to the recent expansions in the biotech industry in that part of the US. The south central states come in second with 20% of CIOs planning to add staff. Good for you, Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas.

So, you ask, what sorts of IT job skills are in the most demand? Glad you asked. The report states that a whopping 77% of respondents say the highest demand skill is for Microsoft Windows administration (Windows NT, 2000 and XP). Over half said that SQL Server management skills are also in great demand. Almost half said they need wireless network management skills. I could sure use some of that skill at our office!

OK – now for the negative report. Gartner reports in a sister Information Week article that offshore outsourcing is sending thousands of once-desirable IT jobs overseas. They believe (with some percentage of probability, no doubt) that 15% of tech workers will drop out of IT by 2010 – just 5 years from now – mostly because they either can’t get jobs or can get more money or job satisfaction elsewhere. They also predict that worldwide demand for technology developers (apparently even in those countries receiving the outsourcing jobs) will shrink by another stunning 30%.

Gartner further affirms that most people associated with corporate IT departments will move into more line-of-business or “business facing” roles, focusing more on corporate strategy than on technologies and algorithms. Perhaps not a bad move for BI as long as there is still the infrastructure (read that as a data warehouse) in place to stop chaos from occurring.

According to Diane Morello, Gartner’s VP of research, “Employers are starting to want versatilists – people with deep experience with enterprise-wide applications and can parlay it into some larger cross-company projects out there”. So those of you working in enterprise BI environments, guess what? You will be worth gold to your employer!

Given that outsourcing is here to stay, the article goes on to say that Stanford career specialists are suggesting to their IT students that they develop foreign language skills in addition to the technical ones. These will be needed to land jobs as cross-cultural project managers – a position that may become highly desirable and rare in the very near future.

Hmm, sure seems like two very opposite views of the same market...

As always, I look forward to your comments…

Yours in BI success.


Posted August 11, 2005 9:32 PM
Permalink | 4 Comments |


Hi Claudia,

Very interesting how these two articles appeared at the same time. In the software space at least, industry pundits in the major publications seem to be predicting the convergence of the various three-letter technologies into more coherent frameworks: ERP + BAM + CPM + BPM. As you identify, what this means is that the next generation of IT workers won't be C++ or Java gurus, but will be those who can learn quickly and synthesize disparate systems into unified business value engines. This also correlates with the rise of the new breed of "Information Science" and "Information Management" departments in major U.S. universities, with people studying areas like taxonomy, search, data integration, etc., in their own right, as opposed to the underlying technologies that implement them.

Great to have you blogging!



Hi Claudia,

It is indeed surprising to see that their are two different versions on that same date. Even though the market has improved alot from what it was on 2001 / 2002, I do not see a drastic improvement as it was during 1996 to 2000. Their are a quite lot of new opportunities but their are also lot of them out their still from what I see from the realistic interactions.

It all depends on the right mix of skill requirements.

Happy blogging.


Hi Claudia

I think there is some truth to both articles. Some IT positions like programmers and analysts are being outsourced to countries like India, but I have noticed intensive hiring and staffing in the areas of Business Intelligence and Data Warehousing domestically. I guess only time will tell.


Faisal Laljee

Is Cognos Reportnet and Powerplay making Strides

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