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Attitude may soon be the new mantra for those still serving in the IT industry, as companies look for a new approach to success.

p Gary Kleyn

THE ponytails and nose rings are disappearing and the business suit is making a comeback in the Internet technology industry.

Employees have decided to either shape-up or ship-out and join their colleagues in the jobless queue.

The revolution has been occurring around the world, but no less so than in Perth, where the industry is reported to have shed more than 25 per cent of its staff since the dot. com bubble burst 18 months ago.

Software development company HarvestRoad Ltd director Graeme Barty said he had seen a massive change in the way staff operated.

“The heydays have come and gone. It’s not about bean bags and massages anymore,” Mr Barty told Business News.

“People take their jobs far more seriously. Everyone is conscious of their contribution and being more frugal in the way they do things.

“The super-arrogant behaviour by staff in the industry has fast disappeared.

“They have been pulled back into line with normal business practices.”

Recruitment and human resource management firm TMP Worldwide IT&T group team leader, Andy Jenkins, has noticed a definite smartening up of employees in the IT industry.

“With employers looking to more redundancies, employees don’t want to stand out. Everyone wants to avoid the feeling that they could be the one under the microscope,” Mr Jenkins said.

“ I’m a great believer that, if you are in business, it’s smart dress. The employee represents the business. If you don’t come smart or neatly dressed, then clients may question just how smart and neat the company is that you work for.”

Mr Barty believes employees are starting to realise the commercial realities of being in business.

“We are being receptive to other people’s requirements and not just our own selfish requirements,” he said. “If what it takes is to wear a business suit, then that is what will happen.”

Mr Jenkins said employees who, in the past, had tickets on themselves no longer were as important, as what once was specialist expertise had become more common knowledge.

“What used to be specialist jobs are becoming more normal,” he said.

“The opportunities that existed in the early days because of the novelty is no longer there.”

Candle IT&T Recruitment general manager Sue Williams agreed that, over the past year, there had been a significant power shift. Whereas employees once held all the cards, now the employers did.

“It’s certainly an employers’ market not an employees’ market as it had been for a long time,” Ms Williams said.

“At the higher end, some people are taking salary cuts of up to $50,000.”

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