Growing demand for IT expertise is flooding the hiring market with job openings for tech professionals. The number of jobs in computer and information technology occupations is expected to grow by 667,6001 in the next decade.
A survey carried out in 2021 focused on 115 STEM employers2 found digital transformation high on the priority list for most companies, with 39% saying it would be a key business focus in the coming months. A further 22% plan to introduce more automation into their operations. As a result, increased specialization and skills would be required from tech candidates, but 63% expected availability of qualified candidates to present a challenge. Another 22% of companies did not anticipate sufficient budget to meet candidates’ salary demands.
The number of jobs for security analysts will grow by 31%
Opportunities for software developers will increase by 21.5%
Of 115 employers surveyed, more than a quarter sought to fill positions in software development, while 13% were looking for systems architects:
- 28%: Software development
- 23%: IT management
- 18%: Web development
- 15%: Systems administration
- 15%: Technical support
- 13%: Systems architecture
- 11%: Security and networking
- 10%: Business intelligence
- 8%: Data management
Certain job types will see opportunities increase much faster than the average.3 Those in the mathematical sciences, such as data scientists and statisticians, will see the biggest rise in opportunities between 2020 and 2030 (33%). Opportunities for security analysts are expected to grow by 31%, while those for software developers and in quality assurance will rise by 21.5%. The number of jobs for systems administrators will grow by 4.3% and those for network architects will rise from just over 160,000 to just over 168,000.
The United Nations ranks the U.S. and China as world leaders in the global digital economy, accounting for 50% of spending on IoT and 75% of the world market for cloud computing.4 To remain in this pre-eminent position, the U.S. desperately needs tech talent. Yet while we are a leader in terms of demand for IT expertise the U.S. is not teaching STEM skills in the same way that other countries do to grow our own supply of talent.
The Global Skills Index5 report published by Coursera, the world’s largest platform for higher education, just before the pandemic found that the U.S. had a mediocre performance in terms of tech skills. In fact, the top country was Argentina, followed by the Czech Republic, Austria, Spain and Poland. And even within the U.S., expertise is not distributed evenly, with the South in particular, lacking in key expertise.
The U.S. teaches relatively basic tech skills compared to the rest of the world and more advanced skills must be self-taught or employer sponsored. Wherever they come from, candidates who have invested in their personal career development to equip themselves with up-to-date technologies and training will be in an increasingly strong position to be able to dictate the terms of their employment.
To help entice candidates, 57% of employers observed a shift to more remote or hybrid working models in their organizations in the previous 12 months. A further 25% said they had introduced a mix of these depending on the requirements of specific roles. This trend is expected to continue, with 39% planning to introduce more remote or hybrid working in the next 12 months.
What is the outlook of the tech talent market for companies in need of top tech talent?
The landscape of the hiring market changes with such rapidity that only a few authoritative sources can accurately opine on the state of things and things to come.
Our new white paper, The Rise of the Tech Talent Shortage, is an exploration of the state of the current market, and informed predictions for the future.
- IT professionals' expectations have risen rapidly since the Covid-19 pandemic exacerbated the supply shortage.
- Employers will need the support of specialist recruitment firms to access the most qualified talent.
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