Saturday, May 12, 2012

Software developers in hot demand

Technology employers still face skills shortages, and for software developers it’s a ‘sellers’ market, as they continue to be the most in-demand IT professionals in Australia, according to a survey of the technology jobs market by one IT recruitment firm.

The survey by Experis, a professional resourcing firm and subsidiary company of the Manpower Group, conducted in the first quarter of this year, found that software developers were the most in-demand group of IT professionals, particularly those with .NET, C# and ASP.Net skills.

Slipping in behind software developers at number two, as the next most in-demand group, are test analysts - especially those with automated testing experience – followed by project managers at number three, business analysts at four and in fifth place, infrastructure engineers with cloud, Citrix and VMware skills.

According to Experis’ general manager, Sue Howse, it’s “no surprise that as Australia’s digital economy continues to prosper, so does the demand for skills.” Howse makes that point while citing an Australian Computer Society (ACS) report which showed that IT careers had waned in recent years, with figures showing national university enrolments in IT were less than half the number they were a decade ago.
“This shortfall of candidates entering the job market is good news for those who already have professional IT skills, as they are certainly in demand. Some candidates may need to up-skill or refresh their credentials to ensure they’re the right fit, but overall, opportunities in IT careers are booming right now.”

According to Howse there are a number of factors driving this demand. “Fields such as cloud technology and social media dominating the business landscape; and with recent analysis estimating Australia’s digital economy was worth $100 billion in 2011getting people into the industry should be a top focus for policy makers, educators and employers.”

For employers struggling to fill positions, flexibility is key, according to Experis, and Howse says that employers should consider ‘teachable fit’ options – “that is candidates who meet most of their requirements, but need further training in some specific areas. If 65% of the fundamental skill set is there, sometimes up-skilling the candidate is worth the effort in the long-term.”
“Employers can also consider sourcing talent from international and interstate regions. This may mean including a talent mobility strategy or flexible working options in their employment plans to lure elusive employees, especially if they’re seeking candidates on a contract-only basis,” Howse concludes.

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