The information technology industry is always changing and evolving, and 2013 looks to be no different. The dramatic rate of change in technology is great for innovation and increased business efficiency but can also cause problems for many organizations. The new changes and breakthroughs in technology require organizations to hire employees that are experienced and up-to-date on the new technologies. Often, this can pose a challenge for businesses because the talent pool is split between recent grads with little experience or longer tenured employees whose skills may not be up to date with the newer tech advances.
For IT managers and CIO’s, planning ahead to determine which skills they think will be most in demand in 2013 is imperative. A recent study of hundreds of IT executives conducted by Computerworld outlines what the most popular and in-demand tech skills will be in 2013.
1) Programming and Application Development
60% of the IT executives surveyed claimed they plan to hire employees with programming and application development skills. This need for programming and development skills stems from organizations trying to implement new programs, products and services. Organizations want to offer their customers the positive experience with their products, and having the newest technology is usually the best way for them to accomplish that. A majority of the industry professionals expressed that they will specifically be looking for people with experience in Java, J2EE and .Net.
2) Project Management
40% of employers plan to hire individuals with project management skills in 2013. It seems obvious that the organizations requiring programming and application development skills will also need individuals to plan, oversee, and execute the new projects and initiatives. Newer technologies lead to increased demand for project managers mainly due to the new projects being more complex. IT executives desire project managers that have a proven track record for success, display leadership, and show great attention to detail.
3) Help Desk/Technical Support
Expected system and program updates for organizations in 2013 will lead to the increased demand for tech support professionals. 35% of IT executives surveyed said they plan to hire help desk or tech support individuals due to the need to monitor and support the new programs and systems created by their organizations. Implementing new systems can lead to questions and confusion when using the systems, and tech support individuals will be necessary to support the increased number of inquiries.
Security has been and always will be a major issue for IT leaders. The threat of data and identity theft is very real, and protecting that information is imperative. The increased demand for specialized security individuals can be attributed to more complex systems, larger amounts of data, and organizational policies such as bring-your-own-device (BYOD.) These items will make it more difficult to monitor and keep secure data and information. 27% of IT leaders plan to hire more security professionals in 2013, and the majority of those leaders want the professionals to have expertise in encryption technology, deploying firewalls, threat detection tools, and high levels of business acumen.
IT employment figures aren’t the only thing to expect an increase in 2013. Most IT executives and employment agencies expect to see a rise in salaries among a majority of IT positions for the upcoming year. Salaries are expected to rise in a variety of information technology positions, with network and wireless engineers, database portal administrators, internet commerce developers, and application developers anticipating the biggest increases.
The growing demand for mobility within organizations will lead to network and wireless engineers expecting 7.8% and 7.9% salary increases, respectively. Database portal administrators follow close behind network and wireless engineers and expect salaries to rise 7.5% for their position. The position expecting the next highest salary increase is internet commerce developers at a 7.3% expected increase to an average of $127,000 on the high end. As seen above, application developers anticipate the biggest hiring increase, and their salaries will expect to rise in conjunction. Application developers are expecting a 6.5% salary increase overall to raise their salaries to $114,500 on the high end. Not only will these developers be more in-demand, they also will be expecting higher salaries from their employers.
All-in-all, what does this data mean?
It means IT managers need to plan ahead and determine which projects are necessary in 2013, and figure out which new individuals they need to hire to fulfill those needs. Many organizations have plans to implement new processes and technologies, which will in turn lead a diminished pool of qualified candidates. If organizations want to keep their technology ahead of the curve, they have to start sooner than later.