More than 18,000 new IT jobs sprang up in January as the overall outlook for tech hiring substantially improved over the past several months, according to figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and research firm Janco Associates.\nBetween that new hiring and adjustments made to the job market totals in the latest BLS numbers, the IT sector has now recouped 53,600 of the roughly 100,000 jobs it lost due to the COVID-19 crisis, according to Janco principal M. Victor Janulaitis.\n\nWhat\u2019s more, the upward trajectory seems likely to continue, as the changing IT jobs market grows and changes, according to his projections. \u201cIT job-market growth will expand by almost 11% in the post-COVID era,\u201d he said. \u201cMost of the growth in the IT job market will be with software developers, quality assurance, and testers. This will be driven by [work from home] as it is embraced by more enterprises in normal operations and internet-centric applications are developed and deployed.\u201d\nAccording to the Janco analysis, 316,000 new QA and tester jobs can be expected over the course of the coming decade, a 17.7% increase. Positions for security analysts will grow at an even faster rate, but add fewer total jobs, up 40,900 for a 23.8% rise.\nIt\u2019s the first time in about a year that there\u2019s been good news about the job market for IT professionals, which suffered an unusually severe decline as a result of the pandemic. Salaries have mostly remained flat or even dropped slightlyduring that period, but that trend, too, seems to be reversing itself, as Janco\u2019s projections predict slight increases for executives and staff alike over the course of the coming year.\nLeft out, however, might be middle management at both large enterprises and SMBs; Janulaitis\u2019 model predicts a slight salary decrease in the category. Large-enterprise middle managers, on average, could see their pay drop by about 0.08%, to a mean of $95,920, while the same personnel at smaller companies could see a decrease of 0.07%, to an average of $91,414.\n\u201cWe believe, with the increase in government spending and the desire to rapidly get back to normal operations, the total IT job market will begin to expand rapidly in the second quarter as more businesses open and get back to normal operations,\u201d Janulaitis said.