Moving into 2017, quality IT roles are being created across all disciplines in a buoyant ICT sector. FDI investment of a high-skilled nature is surpassing expectations with ascendant new tech and finance firms bringing new working practices and attractive IT positions to the market.
The type of niche specialist favoured by IT employers is becoming increasingly rare. Available talent, already a fraction of a relatively small local talent pool, is becoming scarcer as post-recession promotions and pay increases resume. The shortfall in IT skills is intensifying competition for top candidates and having an inflationary impact: hiring managers are demonstrating greater flexibility on starting salaries and existing employers are upgrading salaries to counter offers.
It is important to note that salary is not the overriding factor that convinces top
candidates to commit to new career moves. Companies that offer a more exciting
vision, higher-tech challenges in Agile work environments, better lifestyle packages and greater flexibility will always be strong contenders for the best people.
Hiring challenges remained in 2016 for skillsets such as Java, .Net and UI/UX as has been the case for many years now. QA/Test and BI/Data professionals were also sought after in great numbers. We particularly saw a huge increase in demand for IT security and IT audit professionals. As witnessed through high profile global data breaches throughout the year, there is now an increased risk to commercial IT environments.
2016 also saw BYOD (bring your own device) to work become more commonplace whilst more and more companies migrated to the cloud, factors presenting further potential cyber security threats and with them an unprecedented demand for IT security professionals.
Mobile developers are a hot commodity nowadays, the pool of these developers is around 25-30% the size of the pool of Java developers. iOS Developers are not as numerous as Android developers due to the fact that Java developers can masquerade as Android developers.
Current trends are Big Data requirements within specs or familiarity with the
concepts of NoSQL databases. Furthermore, some clients ask for DevOps principles, eg, knowledge of automations tools like Chef etc.
Moreover, the need for iOS and Android developers to have exposure to each of
their respective disciplines seems to be cropping up more and more in the “Nice
to have” area of specs, so the more general mobile experience the better. The
market is dictating that senior level Mobile developers should be comfortable
with all areas of mobile development, be it iOS or Android.
The IT Infrastructure market continues to be steady. We are seeing
companies leaning more towards permanent staff hires due to the uplift
in the Irish economy. The hot skills continue to be IT Security and DevOps.
There is a shortage of these skills at present which has led to salary
increases. Overall, it’s an attractive market for a jobseeker.
IT infrastructure disciplines have seen an average 5-7% salary rise, year on
year. For senior systems administrators and engineers with strong server
administration experience across both Windows and Linux platforms, we
have seen increases of up to 10%. There has been consistent demand for
1st and 2nd level IT support candidates with strong desktop skills with
increases of roughly 5%.
For some specialist roles such as Active Directory architects and highly experienced enterprise virtualisation engineers, we have seen increments of up to 10%. We have seen DevOps become a more mainstream title. Companies who have been hiring DevOps engineers due to a shortage of experienced candidates with genuine development and production support experience are paying about 10% more than last year. There is heavy demand for application support engineers with a development skill set.
Since the Brexit vote in June, many organizations are applying a new strategy: making full-time hires only for the most essential IT positions and engaging interim specialised support, as needed, to staff projects or implementations and to meet growing business demands. Contracting and temporary positions have become more and more frequent over the last six months. The full impact of Brexit on the recruitment sector remains to be seen and will only become clearer as the details of the UK’s exit plan from the EU become evident.
There’s no getting away from Brexit. And for those who stand to be directly affected, feeling concerned is understandable. The reality is that recruiters are already well versed in helping people navigate a difficult and stressful time of their life – changing careers.