"We look for self starters."
– Sandra Young, Chief Information Officer

DEC VAX cluster, VMS COBOL, DIBOL, Datatrieve
Publishing, market research Small shop


The International Data Group (IDG) is a publishing and marketing research organization that is the leading source of data on information technology. The company publishes 96 publications, including Computerworld, Federal Computer Week, InfoWorld, and PC World in 36 countries.

IDG was founded in 1964. The Framingham, Massachusetts office is corporate headquarters. There are 1,300 employees including 400 in the Boston area. Customers include the financial community, individuals involved in information technology, and business end users. Ten percent of IDG's business is with government clients. IDG is privately held. Revenue in 1989 was $450 million.



IDG has a Digital VAX cluster, running under VMS. Programming is in COBOL and DIBOL. Additional software used includes Datatrieve, FMS, and Digital's data dictionary, CDD. There are 12 computer professionals working in the Information Systems Department. Job titles include Network Administrator and Business Applications Analyst. Half of the work is new development; half is maintenance. A recent project involved writing a general ledger interface to replace the vendor's interface.


Programmers work at corporate headquarters in Framingham, working with PCs or terminals at their desks. The PCs may also be taken home. There is no smoking in common areas or offices. The need for travel varies and is only within the United States. Overtime is infrequent, on an as-needed basis. IDG is proud of its growth from 1 person to 1,300 in 25 years. They feel they offer computer professionals interesting projects, good pay, promotion opportunities, training, and good benefits.

IDG observes 10 holidays. They offer 2 weeks of vacation to start, 3 weeks after 5 years, and 4 weeks after 15 years. The company pays for medical insurance, short-term disability, dental insurance, life insurance (two times the annual salary to a maximum of $100,000), and tuition reimbursement. The company pays for accidental death insurance and there is an ESOP plan. They also administer a 125(k) plan through which employees may deduct expenses, such as dependent care or insurance premiums, on a pretax basis. There have been no layoffs, but occasionally a department has been dissolved. Affected employees were given a severance package and outplacement services.


IDG looks for good people with very good communication skills and at least 3 years of experience. The average computer professional at IDG has 5 years of experience and a Bachelor's degree. IDG does not hire entry-level computer professionals. New employees are found through ads (50%), employment agencies (25%) and personal contacts (25%). IDG hired 4 computer professionals in the last year for which figures are available.


Letters are preferred.

Ms. Sandra Young, Chief Information Officer

(508) 935-4465

International Data Group

5 Speen Street

Framingham, Massachusetts 01701

Copyright 1991. Vandamere Press. Covin’s New England Computer Job Guide