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Home Recruitment New product, services demands put IT employers under hiring pressures

New product, services demands put IT employers under hiring pressures

Australian IT employers are intending to increase or maintain their IT staff headcount in 2017 as they face pressures to bring new products and services to market faster than their competitors.

According to the latest Talent Insight Report from recruitment firm Hudson, 90% of the employers plan to bring on new staff, or at least retain current staff levels, in response to what they say is increased customer demand for their services.

The recruitment firm says many markets are also facing new entrants who typically have the benefit of lower cost structures as they don't have legacy infrastructure.

“This puts pressure on technology professionals to find solutions that can increase the speed of product development and distribution,” Hudson says.

And Hudson says the top roles in demand for the IT sector are business analysts, followed by project manager and .NET programmers.

Hudson says IT functions are under pressure from both internal and external factors and, as customer demands increase, organisations need to bring new products and services to market faster than their competitors.

Services in greater demand, says Hudson, include retail platforms, mobile solutions for e-commerce, better access to public services and service simplification.

And, according to Hudson, often organisations do not have the in-house skills or experience to carry out large-scale digital transformation projects, so they are increasingly hiring permanent and contracting staff to bring new and diverse capabilities into their teams.

When it comes to soft skills, Hudson says innovative thinking is top of the wish list for hiring managers in the IT sector.

The report also reveals that nearly half (47%) of technology employees are open to new opportunities, up from 34% in H2 2016, while 46% of employees surveyed feel they are underpaid and 51% received no increase in their base salary in 2016.

Hudson notes in its report that many workplaces are in transformation and, where once technology teams may have been more focused on maintaining current IT systems, organisations are now responding to the changing environment by restructuring and looking to new systems that are more responsive and customer-centric.

“These changes are happening alongside cultural transformations within organisations, so IT teams are in a constant state of flux,” Hudson says.

“In the midst of change, employees can become frustrated and disengaged. As their organisation shifts around them, employers have the responsibility to keep their staff engaged and motivated - or risk losing their best people,” the recruitment firm cautions.

But, Hudson says employers continue to have strong demand for specialist skillsets, and are facing skills shortages across many role types and technologies.

According to Hudson, professionals who have the right technical skillsets and who can also thrive in an environment of change will be in demand.

“Any managers not continually upskilling staff will be left with a team that's below the industry standard and may find it harder to retain top-performing employee,” the report notes.

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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham is a co-founder of iTWire and a 35-year veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).