In the just-completed poll, most Java/JVM developers who voted indicated that, where they live, work opportunities for Java/JVM developers are plentiful, or at least stable. A total of 203 votes were cast in the poll, which ran during the May 16-30 period. The exact polling prompt and results were:

Where I live, work opportunities for Java/JVM developers are:

  • 22% (44 votes) - Rapidly increasing: it's hard to find enough talented Java/JVM developers
  • 31% (63 votes) - Plentiful, it's not that hard to find work if you're a good developer
  • 20% (40 votes) - Stable
  • 17% (34 votes) - Decreasing, some talented people are losing their jobs or don't have enough work
  • 11% (22 votes) - Other

This is, of course, not a scientific poll, and a survey in which 203 out of an estimated almost 10 Million Java/JVM developers voted will of course have a margin of error. Still, as always, it's interesting to look at the picture the voting results depict.

First of all, more than half of the voters say work opportunities where they live are either plentiful or expanding so much that it's become difficult to find enough talented Java/JVM developers. That's a very, very good situation! In the company where I work, I see Java being increasingly selected for more and more new projects, and for the first time, in the past year I've heard of projects that are utilizing tools like JFrog's Artifactory and the Jenkins Continuous Integration Server. These developments imply to me that certain groups in the company have decided to make a long-term investment in developing new projects using Java. (By the way, the other strongly emergent language being used within the company is Python.)

Getting back to the poll: 20% say work opportunities are stable. So, almost 3/4 of the voters are in a pretty good situation at present with respect to finding and having work.

Still, 1/6 of the voters say opportunities where they live are decreasing, to the extent that talented people are losing their jobs or don't have enough work. This is a difficult situation. You may know that if you move to a different location, you'll likely be able to find good work; but, especially if you have a family and you're well settled in you home area, whether or not to make that kind of move is a difficult decision. I faced it myself back in the early 1990s recession in the U.S. We investigated other states where work was definitely more plentiful, but it would have been a very big, long-distance move. Ultimately, we decided to stay put; but, in the end, we weren't able to weather the extensive duration of the recession in our state, and, with small children in tow, we were forced to migrate anyway (but, fortunately, not as far away). So, I can't really offer advice to developers facing that situation. I just wish all of you good luck...

New poll:

Our new poll is about itself. It asks you to respond to the prompt: What I like most about is....


I can't really say how long this poll will be open, because my Editorship of ends tomorrow. It's been a great 62 months of following the downs and ups of Java and the JVM during that period, blogging, creating and analyzing polls, helping new bloggers, attending Java conferences, and conversing with so many innovative, creative developers...

Happy coding! (I'll be doing more of that myself, going forward...)

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-- Kevin Farnham (@kevin_farnham)