Almost half of firms looking to recruit tech workers

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Many professionals claim their firms are actively seeking workers for tech-based roles, finds CWJobs and techUK

Clare McDonald

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Published: 15 Feb 2021 12:30

Almost half of firms are looking for talent to fill tech roles, according to research by techUK and CWJobs.

As part of their newly launched monthly Tech Jobs Barometer, jobs board CWJobs and industry body techUK found that 45% of professionals asked claimed their company is looking for tech talent.

Antony Walker, Deputy CEO of techUK, said: “Amidst the global pandemic we know that technology and tech-enabled jobs are sustaining the economy, as well as providing the key to our economic recovery.

“The Tech Jobs Barometer will look at job adverts which allow employers to express their skill needs and highlight the number of opportunities the industry has, and techUK is committed to ensuring these opportunities are open to all,” he said. “This will mean not only ensuring individuals have the right skills to thrive in the future world of work but also that they have the motivation and enthusiasm to create their digital future.”

The uncertainty of the coronavirus outbreak caused a knock-on effect for tech hiring in many cases, with the beginning of the first lockdown in March 2020 initially having a negative affect on job seekers before hiring picked up again towards the end of the year.

But despite the coronavirus outbreak, CWJobs saw 224,000 tech jobs posted on its site across 2020, as well as a 25% increase in demand for tech talent in June 2020 when compared to the previous month.

Outside of the CWJobs/techUK research, the Recruitment and Employment Federation found an increase in IT job adverts in July 2020, where active job postings of all types across the UK reached a peak of more than one million, and Tech Nation also reported a 36% increase in tech job vacancies posted between June and August 2020.

With many suggesting technology will play a role in the UK’s recovery post-pandemic, tech skills are as important as ever, with many working on their digital skills during lockdown, and some expressing an interest in shifting into the tech field.

Almost 40% of employees asked said general IT skills were the type of skills most needed to succeed in the tech sector.

Dominic Harvey, Director at CWJobs, said: “As more companies move towards transforming into virtual organisations, increased learning, retraining, and upskilling will offer a continuous and lifelong journey for employees. Tapping into the pipeline of existing and future tech talent will help alleviate the skills gap and ensure the British tech jobs market will remain agile and robust throughout 2021 and beyond.”

But the UK is still suffering from a tech skills gap – more than 60% of business execs in the UK claimed their businesses do not have the tech talent for delivering their digital strategy, with skills such as cloud, cyber security, IT support and artificial intelligence all among the most in-demand skills of 2020.

Throughout last year, CWJobs found the job role with the highest number of applications was business analyst.

Java developer and IT support engineer also saw a large number of applications on the platform, and most of the top 10 job roles advertised on the platform were centred around software development.

Java developer, .NET developer, front-end developer and software developer were all among the top 10 most advertised job roles in 2020 on CWJobs, as well as DevOps engineer, full stack developer and PHP developer, with coding and web design/UX also among last year’s most in demand skills.

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