In Demand: Tech Economists

If you’re still trying to lure prospective employers by highlighting the technology prowess in your resume, try this: Add examples of the savings and operating efficiencies you’ve achieved using your IT skills.

Employers want IT professionals who can bolster the bottom line by using what Howard Rubin, president and chief executive of Rubin Worldwide, a researcher in Pound Ridge, N.Y., calls "technology economics." At the recent CIO Summit in New York, Rubin said tech leaders have an unprecedented opportunity to leverage existing investments to lower their organization’s overall operating expenses. With taxes and the cost of regulatory compliance expected to rise over the next few years, businesses are scrambling to find ways to reduce operating costs through increased efficiencies. Since most companies have already leveraged all possible savings from staff reductions, they’re turning to IT for fresh ideas.

Rubin, who’s also professor emeritus of Hunter College of the City University of New York, pointed out several examples of how organizations can transform their fixed costs to variable costs, and so use IT to help drive operational improvements. Organizations that mix technology investments to grow and protect their revenues, while reducing or avoiding costs at a managed level of risk, can outperform their peers by 3 to 5 percent of pre-tax profit, he says.

"We’re in the age of discovery in technology economics," says Rubin. "It’s a burgeoning field and there are tremendous opportunities for those who leverage them."

Want to learn more? The Rubin Worldwide Web site is a good place to start.

— Leslie Stevens-Huffman