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IT: the world's most stressful profession

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A poll has revealed what sobbing IT operatives already know only too well: their chosen profession is the most stressful on God's Green Earth and Iraqi A&E doctors should consider themselves lucky not to spend their days at the sharp end of a relentless assault of clueless users and badgering bosses.

That's the conclusion of a probe of 3,000 "IT experts" carrried out by "online learning provider" SkillSoft, which reveals the staggering fact that "97 per cent of people working in IT claim to find their life at work stressful on a daily basis".

Indeed, four-fifths of IT consultants "feel stressed before they even enter the workplace", while a quarter of the poor buggers "are under such enormous pressure to perform at work they have taken time off suffering with stress".

One pollee wailed: "I spend most of my day fielding calls from people who don't even have a basic knowledge of computers and printers. It is amazing the amount of time I spend teaching people where the on-off button is. And when I do actually find a technical problem to solve, I have my manager breathing down my neck wondering why I have a backlog of complaints."

Bless. According to SkillSoft MD Kevin Young: "Our research was sparked by a recent Gartner report which claims that the untrained or under-trained desktop user will cost an organisation five times more to support than a well-trained worker. This led us to thinking about how much pressure this must also put on the IT professionals who have to provide such support.

"By commissioning this study, our aim was to establish to what level workload affects the stress levels of people working in IT and across a variety of other job disciplines; and to learn more about the sort of other factors that impact on stress in the workplace."

Whatever. Here are the top ten most stressful jobs, according to SkillSoft:

  1. IT
  2. Medicine/Caring Profession
  3. Engineering
  4. Sales and Marketing
  5. Education
  6. Finance
  7. Human Resources
  8. Operations
  9. Production
  10. Clerical

And here's an alternative top ten as compiled by the Vulture Central Statistical Analysis Soviet:

  1. Iraqi police recruit
  2. US Army bomb disposal expert
  3. Baghdad A&E doctor
  4. British Airways pilot
  5. Naomi Campbell's personal assistant
  6. Naomi Campbell's housekeeper
  7. Dick Cheney's shooting buddy
  8. Steve Ballmer's office furniture supplier
  9. Wayne Rooney's fiancée
  10. IT journalist

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