Offshoring, slow industry growth and technological advances will cost 83,000 jobs in 2013, and 770,000 by 2017. So says business advisory firm the Hackett Group.
The Hackett Group estimates that, by 2017, almost half of all corporate IT jobs in companies that existed in Europe in 2002 will have ceased to exist, but admits that even this estimate could be "optimistic", as it has factored in a "modest" level of job creation that it said may not materialise.
"As the IMF [International Monetary Fund] and others are now looking at shrinking short-term global growth projections, and more than half of the European Union countries have returned to recession in early 2013, even the modest job creation assumptions in the Hackett model may prove to be overly optimistic," said Hackett's report.
The ongoing "war for talent" in the global industry, said Hackett, will step up again as IT continues to widen its aspect across the world. "Knowledge-centric" aspects of potential staff will be increasingly chosen over simple geographical situation as networking technology allows work to be done remotely with as much efficiency as locally.
"For many people in Europe seeking jobs in corporate IT, our research offers a bleak picture to be sure," said Hackett managing director Rashpal Hullait.
"The evolving offshore job market and the maturing of global business services operations has simply eliminated many of the jobs that used to exist in IT, and a similar thing is happening in finance and other business services areas."
However, Hullait said it is also important to look at globalisation as an opportunity for all, as anyone is able to become more "knowledge-centric" and make the shift to global business services.
But at the same time, Hullait said that new opportunities are presenting themselves to help achieve the shift.
"Staff that can develop the knowledge-centric skills that companies need to support their own shifts to global business services, and their overall globalization goals, will find themselves in great demand."
Hackett argues that, by 2017, half of all jobs will depend entirely on knowledge bases, which it says is an increase of over 40 per cent since 2002. The challenge for companies, it says, now lies in acquiring, developing and retaining talent in knowledge-based areas in the face of global competition.
Further, with economic uncertainty prevailing, Hackett says that most companies are still "focused on reducing fixed costs, further impacting on job creation".