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21st Jan, 2022

Alister Houghton
Alister Houghton
Job Title
Senior Content Writer

The pace of change in the technology sector driven by the pandemic over the past two years doesn’t look like relenting in 2022. This means both companies and tech specialists need to stay abreast of the shifting sands in this fast-moving sector.

Here are the key changes across five of the sector’s key verticals which you need to be aware of.

Development and testing

While there has always been a shortage of available development and testing specialists, this has become even more acute over the last 12 months. The market of these professionals will remain challenging for employers throughout 2022.

“Many strong developers within the more popular technologies such as .Net, Java and JavaScript are handing in their notice before accepting another role as they know they will be able to get another opportunity with very little notice,” notes Jack Ashley, Development & Testing Expert at Reed.

Against this backdrop, organisations need to ensure they they’re offering the right salaries and benefits to attract development and testing specialists. This includes the option to work remotely and flexibly – this is now seen as a given by professionals and many won’t even consider a role at organisations who do not offer them.

BI and data science

After being one of the few areas of tech which was negatively impacted at the onset of the pandemic, the business intelligence and data science market has quickly rebounded following this initial slump. Specialists in this vertical have been highly sought after for the past 12 months – and this is set to continue throughout 2022.

Companies have increasing need for cloud specialists as they move their data warehousing to the cloud, while firms also have greater need for data visualisation experts as they shift their reporting to cutting-edge tools.

This has increased opportunities for BI and data science professionals, but as Reed BI & Data Science Expert Arslan Zahid explains, they should investigate each job opening thoroughly to find the position for which they are best suited:

“Professionals exploring the data market should get to know an organisation’s plans. If they don’t use a specific technology right now, what is their plan for the future? It’s very easy to think of the immediate wins in joining a company, but if they have big plans to introduce cutting-edge technology or systems within the business, this would be an ideal opportunity to become an integral part of that implementation process.”

Infrastructure and support

The pandemic has accelerated businesses’ transition to cloud technologies, meaning cloud expertise is now the biggest area of growth in this vertical. This is true for both companies and professionals – those who currently operate onsite infrastructure need to adapt to the cloud or risk falling behind.

Given this need for professionals with the right skills, those who have the desired competencies have their choice of roles – this competition can be challenging for some businesses. Jennifer Otoo, Infrastructure & Support Expert at Reed, outlines how companies can compete:

“The increased demand for IT professionals, and the ability of some companies to offer high salaries and bespoke benefits, can put some organisations in a difficult situation if they have pay and benefit structures which can’t be flexed so easily. In this case, businesses need to stand out in other areas, doing what they can with benefits packages as well as training, development, and progression opportunities.”

Transformation, projects and change

The pandemic has had a dual effect on IT transformation projects. While the initial economic uncertainty put a pause on many planned projects, it also highlighted the need for business transformation and moved these changes higher on companies’ priority lists.

Competition for professionals is fierce, with the widespread use of remote working meaning that organisations must compete internationally for talent, not just within their own country or region. Given this battle for talent, some firms may seek to use innovative working models to access professionals with the right skill sets, as Jaimie Hill, Transformation, Projects & Change Expert at Reed, highlights:

“Traditional permanent and contract roles are not the only way to access the best professionals. For specialist projects companies should consider outcome-focused statement of work solutions, or even fractional models, as these are great ways of getting the expertise needed in a more flexible and affordable manner.”

IT and cyber security

The shift to increased home working brought about by the pandemic over the last two years has meant that cyber security specialists remain in demand. This will remain the case in 2022.

Cyber security engineers and penetration testers are two positions where professionals are particularly sought after, while DevSecOps specialists are also in demand as this area of cyber security matures. While there is a shortage of cyber specialists, Reed’s IT & Cyber Security Expert, Nick Widdop, argues that this is as much down to how employers recruit for their roles, rather than a simple lack of numbers:

“There’s a general consensus that there is a skills gap in cyber security, however, I would argue that there are plenty of highly skilled professionals in the practice. Instead, job specifications need to be brought in line with expectations and the task in hand for that specific role – rather than chasing the ‘unicorn’ employee.”

To find out more about salary and benefits trends in the tech sector, download our 2024 technology salary guide now.

Reed salary guide 2024