Technology jobs in the face of talent shortage
Even as technology jobs, personal lives, and economies are becoming more connected, more digital, and automated in the next normal after COVID-19, the spotlight is on the next wave of innovation in information technology (IT). Apart from being the driver of America’s competitive edge, information technology jobs have continued to play a key role in shaping economic growth; as per Cyberstates 2018, a CompTIA’s analysis of the tech industry.
Employment in the IT industry is slated to grow at a rate of 13% by 2026, faster than all other occupations. From cloud computing and big data storage to information security, the demand for skilled technology workers is on the rise.
CompTIA’s analysis reveals tech companies are looking for a broad range of skills in four specific areas of infrastructure, software development, cybersecurity, and data management. Across these four sectors, hiring companies are looking for mid-level workers with six to ten years of experience or early-stage workers with three to five years of experience.
So how can the tech talent shortage impact your business?
Since 2010, in the U.S., tech-related jobs have grown by as much as 200,000 annually, as the U.S. economy is increasingly becoming reliant on skilled technology labor.
As per a KPMG study, 65% of the 3000 technology leaders surveyed, named hiring challenges as the key factor that was impacting the industry. While these technologies are set to transform economies, there is a critical need for a capable workforce that can convert technical knowledge and exploit the immense potential of digital technologies.
- Fintech is expected to face a tech labor shortage of more than ten million, leading to a $1.3 trillion revenue loss by 2030.
- By 2030, Telecom and media will have to deal with a shortage of 4.3 million tech workers costing the industries $449.7 billion.
- In the manufacturing sector, the deficit of tech workers will be as much as 7.9 million with a revenue loss of $607.1 billion.
Having the right IT talent and investing in upskilling your top talent are critical for business growth and success as technology will take center stage in the years to come.
How industry forecasts can be skewed
Your approach to IT staffing is key to finding the right IT talent. In the last 20 years there were three distinct periods of time when either employment was high and finding qualified candidates was difficult, or, there was a spike in unemployment and highly skilled candidates were in the market looking for a job.
The early 2000’s introduced the “dot.com era.” Dot.Com This was a time when IT employment was very high and qualified candidates were hard to find. It was a difficult choice for candidates because they were lured by the instant wealth: “stock options in a startup company” versus the opportunities provided by stable well-established companies. When Venture Capital eased, many of these dot.com startup companies failed, laying off thousands of IT personnel. It took years for this talent pool to find jobs.
Later that decade (starting in 2008) the financial crisis hit 2008 Financial Crisis, many large firms closed and firms closely related were also greatly impacted. The result: layoffs were significant. Large numbers of high caliber IT personnel were looking for a job. Many in the IT field found other opportunities outside of IT while others remained searching for years. Most never realized the same compensation levels they had prior to the financial crisis.
Third, these last few years we once again have high employment Current Employment (and the future looks very good for continued high employment Employment Forecast), resulting in limited availability of qualified IT talent. This once again puts pressure on companies to both retain current employees and attract qualified candidates.
Economic changes happen, as we saw with the recent COVID-19 pandemic. We are still navigating our way through those changes, and although an employment forecast may contain the most current data available, it is still speculative. There is no way to determine what the future will bring. Overall, IT will remain an integral part of a company’s success. Retaining and attracting the right people with the right skills will surely be a constant.