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IT pros are in demand nationwide – go where your skills can take you

Posted on Thursday, Mar 22, 2018

IT professionals Where should you go to drive your IT career further, faster? | Hays Blogremain some of the most in-demand candidates in Canada, especially those with expertise in development, security, cloud computing, or big data. This means a chance to explore new roles in new cities across the country.

Almost half (46%) of IT employers interviewed for the Hays Salary Guide increased their number of employees in 2017, and 52% expect to hire more staff in 2018. Hiring expectations in the tech industry continue to rise much faster than in other sectors nationally, and with American employers drawing more skilled workers south, Canadian companies are offering lucrative incentives to keep people home.

It’s never been a better time to explore where in Canada is best for you.

Plenty of Regional Opportunities

Vancouver, traditionally our start-up hub and one of the most beautiful cities in the country, is badly in need of top talent. It’s worth heading west to fill the gaps left by Amazon and Microsoft. Software developers, especially, are worth their weight in gold on the west coast.

Moving inland, Calgary’s initiatives to attract successful IT businesses have paid off, making it a great place to get your own start or build up your career in a variety of roles. And with the city bidding on Amazon’s HQ2, Alberta may become a full-blown tech corridor sooner than we think.

In the heartland, Toronto’s constantly growing tech sector expanded further in 2017. Fueled by new start-ups and corporate acquisitions, Toronto’s IT employers are struggling to find employees with experience. Candidates with the most up-to-date skillsets can demand a premium.

Looking northeast, Ottawa’s high-tech hub, Kanata, has been experiencing structural shifts that could be in your favour. Traditionally geared toward hardware development, large employers such as Shopify, Apple, and Blackberry QNX are driving employers to compete for specialists in software-as-a-service, artificial intelligence, and even self-driving car tech thanks to Ford’s recently opened R&D site. With Invest Ottawa predicting 10,000 new tech jobs in the city by 2019, it’s time to finally make that pilgrimage to the nation’s capital.

And just across the border in Quebec, Montréal’s tech sector continues to be a major factor of the province’s economic growth. One of Canada’s foremost hubs for AI and machine learning, we’re seeing major investments in developing technologies there, making Montréal an appealing prospect.

Maximize Your Hiring Potential

A third of IT employers sampled expect to increase their salary rates in 2018, so now’s a good time to shift your role in the industry.  If you want to compete in the current IT market here’s what we suggest:

•    Branch out into new skillsets to avoid becoming obsolete. The right IT skills can demand a premium, but those skills won’t be the same in five years.

•    Keep an open mind to find the role that aligns with your career goals and preferences. Flexibility on location, industry, and project type can expand your opportunities.

•    Know what skills are becoming sought after within your expertise. For example, learn automation testing to stay relevant in Quality Assurance.

IT professionals have never been more in demand across Canada. So if you’re on the hunt for a better job in your field, it’s time to contact your local Hays office.
 

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