Half of Australian organisations boosting IT headcount this year

Hays survey finds 53 per cent of employers are seeking additional permanent IT workers

More than half of the 3,000 Australian organisations surveyed by Hays in its latest Jobs Report say they intend to increase IT headcounts within the next six months.

By the end of the year, 53 per cent of respondents said they expect to increase permanent IT staff numbers and 33 per cent expect to increase their use of temporary and contract IT workers.

A number of job roles are in particularly high demand, according to the specialist recruiter.

They include business analysts with broad experience in business system transformation and project managers with digital exposure.

Data scientists, data engineers and data analysts with experience in SQL and Tableau, are being sought in high numbers, and as businesses adapt to new technologies and processes, demand for experienced change managers is predicted to remain high.

The survey revealed a trend away from employers seeking to fill traditional infrastructure roles, who are instead seeking system operator engineers, system architects, infrastructure engineers and system reliability engineers.

Cloud engineers with AWS and Azure experience are also in demand, particularly as more organisations move to cloud based solutions.

In this area however, supply is failing to meet demand said Hays’ managing director in ANZ, Nick Deligiannis, adding: “since few skilled developers possess knowledge of cloud technologies. While more professionals are upskilling and gaining experience in this area, the number with proven commercial experience remains low”.

Sourcing cyber skills

The Hays report, published today, also revealed continuing demand for cyber security professionals with an elastic skill-set across all incident response and penetration testing functions.

This is in part due to two major new regulatory changes relating to data. One is the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which came into effect on 25 May. Although it’s an EU regulation, Australian businesses that have European customers are affected by it.

In February, Australia’s data breach notification regime took effect, obliging most major Australian businesses to notify their customers and the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner of serious data breaches.

A separate survey by Gemalto released earlier this week found that only around half of Australian IT decision makers said  their compliance measures were up to scratch and 92 per cent indicated that they are finding it difficult to remain compliant with data regulations.

In general, employers are not seeking individuals with just technical ability, Deligiannis said.

“They now want relevant industry experience, demonstrable business acumen and good communication and interpersonal in order to help an organisation navigate future business challenges,” he said.

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