Staff shortage sparks hiring
A shortage of skilled, experienced IT industry workers has led to robust hiring. Late 2011 saw hiring freezes and headcount reductions due to the downturn in the US and Europe. Hiring has since begun to pick up although firms are more cautious about taking on staff at managerial level and above in IT departments. Due to shortages, competition is fierce in the hunt for candidates at junior developer level.
Hiring is varied across different sectors. Finance departments have seen restructuring and job cuts, with many staff seeking work in more stable sectors. But as they are normally used to higher salaries, they inevitably face difficulties outside a sector they are familiar with.
Turnover is especially serious among junior staff and frontline managers. In an unstable economic situation, these roles face huge pressure due to restructuring and layoffs, with remaining staff working longer to cope with extra workloads.
As firms try to grow via websites, social media and mobile apps, there is demand for – but a dearth of – programmers and developers. In response, firms focus on talent retention. Surveys show bosses will offer basic salary increments of 2 to 5 per cent, in line with inflation, plus benefit deals, to staff with potential.
William Ko, consultant, Technology Careers
As told to Chiu Po-sze