In my last blog, I published the following figure:
One percent seems a lot. Let’s check this:
In the Bureau of Labor Statistics of May 2011, we find the following:
Total employment = 3,406,720 as of May 2011
15-0000 Computer and Mathematical Occupations 3,406,720
This covers the following categories:
Computer and Information Research Scientists ; Computer Systems Analysts ;Computer Programmers ; Software Developers, Applications ; Software Developers, Systems Software ; Database Administrators ;Network and Computer Systems Administrators* ; Computer Support Specialists ; Information Security Analysts, Web Developers, and Computer Network Architects ; Computer Occupations, All Other* ; Actuaries ; Mathematicians ; Operations Research Analysts ;Statisticians ; Mathematical Technicians ; Mathematical Science Occupations, All Other
Let us count only the computer science categories:
15-1111 Computer and Information Research Scientists 25,160
15-1121 Computer Systems Analysts 487,740
15-1131 Computer Programmers 320,100
15-1132 Software Developers, Applications 539,880
15-1133 Software Developers, Systems Software 387,050
15-1141 Database Administrators 108,500
15-1142 Network and Computer Systems Administrators* 341,800
15-1150 Computer Support Specialists 632,490
15-1179 Information Security Analysts, Web Developers, and Computer Network Architects 272,670
15-1799 Computer Occupations, All Other* 177,630
And add them:
The total population in USA as of January 1st 2013 is estimated to :
I have not found the population in May 2011, but should not be very different.
So I come to the conclusion:
Number of software professionals = 3,293,020
Total population = 315,091,138
Meaning that there are more than 1% of the population in these computer science categories, if my way of counting is right.
Of course we can discuss if some categories mentioned above should be considered as software professional. This is particularly true of 15-1150 Computer Support Specialists.
According to the way we count them, we may be a bit below the 1% of the population considered as software professionals. But this level may be kept as a broad indication. It has been used by many authors. For example in his NPUC’09 presentation entitled ‘End-User Design and Development” at IBM Almaden research center (July 9, 2009, the future of design and software development), Brad Myers presented the following data on End-User Developers (EUDs), mentioning again this 3 million of professional programmers in US estimated for 2012:
But, the problem is not to discuss this number. It is rather to understand how the 99% rest of the population are using software based systems.