IT professionals get multiple job offers and double-digit pay increases as demand surges

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IT professionals get multiple job offers and double-digit pay increases as demand surges

Karl Flinders

Demand for IT skills has increased as businesses begin to re-invest in IT and professionals with particular IT skills are receiving multiple job offers and double-digit pay increases if they switch employers.

In May this year, job vacancies for IT professionals were 28% higher than in May 2010. This compares to a 13% increase in job vacancies for the whole economy.

There were 90,416 new IT jobs advertised on job boards in May 2011, compared to 70,912 in May 2010, according to research from Staffing Industry Analysts and Innovantage, commissioned by the Association of Professional Staffing Companies (Apsco).

Financial services, retail and the media are seeing the strongest growth, according to the research.

In the finance sector, regulations like Solvency II are driving demand for IT skills as companies attempt to meet them. There is also a drive to speed-up trading in finance firms, which is increasing demand for skills associated with high-speed networks and complex event processing software.

Retailers are investing in e-commerce while media companies are spending on websites.

Ann Swain, CEO at Apsco, said businesses are investing in technology after reining in spending during the recession. "IT is seen as key to boosting competitive advantage, so IT directors are increasingly keen to push the button on projects, which will deliver significant productivity gains. Candidates with cloud computing experience, for example, are in high demand."

"We are seeing a significant increase in demand for IT professionals, with skills shortages in some areas now becoming widespread. Candidates with niche, in-demand skills are receiving multiple job offers and double-digit pay increases for switching roles are now commonplace," Ann Swain said.

John Nurthen of Staffing Industry Analysts says some employers are struggling to find the skills they need. He said some IT roles are now taking six months or more to fill.

Recent figures from KPMG and the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC), compiled by Markit, showed demand for IT staff has increased since June 2010.


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