New research by Robert Half Technology recruitment amongst UK CIOs finds that more than a third (36%) plan to expand their IT workforce in first half of 2015. With technology skills continuing to grow in demand, the majority of IT leaders (96%) are already reporting that they find it either ‘somewhat’ (64%) or ‘very’ (32%) difficult to find skilled IT professionals.
The result of the skills shortage is the inevitable rise in salaries; with more than four in 10 (41%) CIOs say that they expect to increase salaries for IT professionals in 2015, and 20% expect to pay out extra bonuses.
When the survey asked the CIOs what was driving the new recruitment burst, the majority (62%) cited the use of new technology products, followed by moving to cloud based infrastructure (51%) and product or service expansion (40%).
Those of you who think this is just a London problem, or a start-up problem are going to have to think again. The survey found that skills problems are similar across all regions, size and types of business, however higher numbers of CIOs from the South West / Wales region (45%) and Midlands region (50%) report that it is ‘very’ difficult to find the right IT skills.
The lack of IT skills is also driving retention concerns among CIOs with the majority (89%) saying they are either ‘somewhat’ (63%) or ‘very’ (26%) concerned about losing top IT performers.
The solution for the skills crisis isn’t just to pay more as Charlie Grubb, Associate Director at Robert Half Technology points out: “While financial remuneration is key to employee retention of all skilled professionals, it’s important to remember that IT people are motivated by other factors as well, including technical training, the ability to work with leading edge technologies and contribute to business success. We are already finding that companies need to act decisively when making job offers to IT professionals if they are not to lose out and the pressure on the IT jobs market will continue to increase, particularly in the second half of this year.”
The really bad news is that this lack of skills is only going to get worse as the survey revealed the rate at which companies hire new IT professionals will accelerate still further in the second half of the year, with 41% of CIOs predicting that they will take on new staff.