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Demand for Digital Expertise on the Rise

Posted By Travis O'Rourke, Senior Business Manager, on Wednesday, Jan 22, 2014

Recruitment for IT, Hiring on the Rise - imageFifty-six per cent of professionals say business activity increased in the Information Technology (IT) sector in 2013, and 60 per cent believe it will continue to increase over the next 12 months. A significant 57 per cent of IT professionals predict a static economy in 2014, cited by ITWorldCanada.

The use of digital platforms is growing as an integral component to business strategies. A recent report by the Information and Communication Technology Council (ICTC) noted that roughly 79,000 Canadians are now employed to support these platforms, and predict that within the next five years there will be 22,000 jobs in Canada in this field. The increase in jobs will exacerbate the already candidate short market in IT. Twenty-one per cent of employers feel there is currently a high to extremely high skills shortage in the industry, and 24 per cent say they have significant to extreme difficulties hiring talent. Crucially, 44 per cent of employers say there is high to extremely high work place pressures due to the lack of candidates available to support the work load. Employers cite a lack of training and professional development, and fewer people entering the job market as leading causes. Technology is developing at such a fast pace that it is essential for candidates to be one step ahead of the business market. Training courses on the latest versions of systems are essential for employees to keep pace with adoption.

Employers predict that in order to cut costs IT helpdesks and infrastructure positions will continue to be outsourced to India, Ireland and Argentina. Regrettably Canadians that were employed to fulfill these roles domestically will be displaced. However, it is possible that they will transition into system administration positions and as network support technicians.

In Western Canada Amazon, Facebook, and Microsoft are following in the footsteps of HootSuite and setting up offices in Vancouver.  This is causing a stir in the candidate market as IT professionals wait to see what new jobs come online. We are encouraging employers to begin recruitment processes early for key positions to have access to a full range of candidates.

Hiring managers within the wealth and capital market sectors are looking to enhance user experience in mobile technology and current website platforms. Security continues to be a hot topic as businesses look to IT professionals to protect their assets internally and externally. We are seeing an increase in process compliance project managers to design anti-money laundering and fraud processes, and network security specialists and security architects to execute the new systems. Hiring managers tell us that transferable industry experience and presentation skills are essential in this role. Employers should consider adding a presentation stage in the hiring process to gauge for these soft skills.

Learn more about the IT market in our recent IT Labour Market Webinar.

Learn more about Travis O'Rourke.

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