If you read Tom H's recent posting on Java Programmer Trends, then you may have the feeling that all is not well in the Java jobs marketplace. From a peak in late 2006 to the present there has been a sharp drop in openings for Java software developers. If you're thinking about leaving your current situation for greener pastures, a graph like this might hold you back!
I investigated further, and at the very least the decline (if there really is a decline) is by no means limited to Java. As you can see from the graph below everything seems to be in decline. And even though Ruby is the exception, it doesn't look like anything Rubyists should get too excited about. These results only apply to the United States, unfortunately there doesn't seem to be a job trends search engine for European jobs. But from looking at the job listings from various recruitment websites, there doesn't appear to be such a large amount of development positions offered now as there was in the past few years.
One thing for sure from the graph is that it's not just Java in decline, .NET is on the way down too. There could be many reasons for the trends:
- Growth in the software development sector is matching the current state of the economy
- Companies are using recruitment sites less and are hiring using job listings in newspapers and from their own sites
- Newer languages are on the rise
I'm interested to hear your opinions on this. If jobs in Java are in decline, where should we be looking to to maintain our employability? Do you have experiences that indicate that this isn't the case, and that things are actually looking up for Java developers?