One of the few still-buoyant project areas - supply chains - faces a skills shortage that could cramp its progress.
Senior-level supply chain expertise is scarce, according to executive recruitment firm Management Recruiters Australia (MRA).
Management-savvy, strategic professionals, who are now highly sought after, have repalced the cookie-cutter approach and a strong emphasis on technology in the supply chain sector.
MRA general manager Margaret Locke said that, three years ago CEOs looked to technology but the one-size-fits-all solutions failed. Now, chief execs demand a more tailored approach.
Instead of "bashing suppliers into the ground over cost", Locke said today's project leaders re-engineer the supply chain to create a tailored solution with the emphasis on a cultural shift and more transparent working relationships.
"The level of experience and the ability to affect a cultural change is not easy to find in one professional along with experience in procurement, IT and logistics as well as materials and handling," she said.
It is this latest trend that is driving prosperity in the supply chain business consultancy industry with the use of contractors accelerating skyward so those professionals who fit the bill "will be rewarded handsomely".
At year's end job prospects for IT professionals remained steady with the latest Olivier Internet Job Index for November 2003 there was less than a half a per cent change in the number of IT and telecommunications jobs recorded between October and November.
IT&T jobs represented 7.12 per cent of the total number of jobs advertised online with the most popular job type software development.
Hardware came in as the least popular job area representing only 1.44 per cent of all jobs posted.