Is the IT Talent Shortage Fact or Fiction?
Over decades, the industry is bombarded with news reports, stories, blog posts, and articles about the imminent shortage of IT talent. It is overwhelming for the industries, economies, and businesses to cope with the thought of a looming shortfall. With the pandemic surfacing, the matter has only exacerbated as many people quit their occupations and started trying new things while some just dropped out.
While there is a certain amount of validity to such stories, especially when a traditional job or work style is concerned, and at its face value. Human resources, recruiters, and business people anecdotally affirm this shortage. However, finding real numbers or examples may be difficult. Principally, there are short-term or temporary shortages in expanding or emerging areas where supply and education may not be in tandem with demand.
This includes fields like robotics engineering, artificial intelligence, and other new jobs. Oftentimes, such job requirements are impractical. Moreover, the qualifications required for these jobs may be unnecessarily excessive. IT staffing companies may have a tough time headhunting. Over time, more people would develop those skills, expertise, and experience, thus filling the positions.
IT Talent Crisis – Arguments For the Move
According to the BLS, tech occupation is increasing at least by 12% over the coming years, which is a significant jump. (https://www.bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/home.htm). However, it is still not clear whether the supply of tech resources can meet the demand. It is estimated that in the coming decade, there would be over 1 million STEM-related vacancies, which America would not be able to fulfill due to a lack of supply of human resources. (https://www.bls.gov/opub/mlr/2015/article/stem-crisis-or-stem-surplus-yes-and-yes.htm)
The greatest challenge, however, is the sheer speed at which technology is evolving in this dynamic business world. This is typically true in the case of the most overwhelming areas such as Cybersecurity. According to Cisco, the technologies and knowledge of cybercriminals have outpaced the resources and abilities of companies to address those risks. It is estimated that there would be more than 1 million vacancies in cybersecurity positions worldwide, which would remain unfilled. As a result, they firmly believe that cybersecurity has to be the top priority.
Finally, there is a 2.5% rate of unemployment in the technical field, which means the supply of such tech talents is not available readily unlike other fields. Although this does not correlate with the shortage of talent, it definitely explains why it is difficult to find IT pros – because they are already employed happily.
IT Talent Crisis – Arguments Against the Move
On the contrary, many people believe that shortage of IT talent is just a myth. Some also opine that with the rising tech salaries, it is only a matter of offering the right amount of money. Skimping on their compensation packages would drive them away. Whereas others also believe it is all about adjusting the requirements of the position instead of being so picky about selecting the right candidates.
According to a study conducted by Indeed.com, there is usually a mismatch between the location of the hiring companies and where talented people are searching for jobs. For instance, IT job seekers may be looking for a job in one location of the city, but demand is lower in that area. Likewise, more companies may be hiring in some international cities, but people are not searching there. Therefore, there seems to be a shortage of talent on the regional level, which can be overcome through remote options of work or even attractive packages for relocation.
Finally, according to surveys, approximately 15% of IT pros are looking for new jobs actively. This means, when IT staffing companies are merely shopping places with dynamic job seekers are hanging out, then it would appear to be a shortage of talent. However, in reality, 60.4% of all IT folks consider new openings and opportunities even when they are not actively seeking. Companies should be more creative with the recruitment strategies to find as well as attract such talent.
Why Is IT Talent Shortage Much Debated – IT Staffing Companies Opinion
It’s not rocket science to understand that we should do thorough market research and recognize the dynamics of demand and supply of talents as essential practices, typically before a major initiative to hire. Knowing if there is a real shortage of talent fundamentally changes as well as directs the hiring strategies.
When there is a shortage of talent, focus on talent development principles to achieve the deliverables. Do you attend career fairs in colleges? Do you invest time and money in professional development courses and employee training? What are the areas you are ready to sacrifice while recruiting the necessary workforce?
If there is no such talent shortage, you have to determine why dream candidates in the IT industry are so difficult to find. If you are not searching in all the wrong locations, there cannot be such a lag. Are you willing to provide the right remuneration to the employees who deserve it? Are you going to give them opportunities for decision-making and career growth? If so, advertise those important factors effectively. Or, you might just need efficient and strong IT staffing companies for the recruitment process.