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Still lack of tech talent

Continued lack of tech talent despite layoffs survey shows

The demand for tech talent still significantly exceeds supply, according to a recent survey. Tech companies have all announced big layoffs of staff as they adjust to a global economic downturn and over optimistic hiring of staff during the pandemic but the tech talent crunch is not over, marketing and research firm Gartner says. The lack of tech talent is predicted to last at least until 2026.

Appearances can be deceiving. Demand for tech talent still significantly exceeds supply. A survey in November and December shows 86% of chief information officers face more competition for qualified candidates and 73% were worried about IT talent attrition, Gartner says in a blog post.

Mbula Schoen, Senior Director Analyst at the company, predicts demand for tech talent greatly outstrips supply and will be the case until at least 2026. 

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“Contrary to what we’re seeing in the headlines, many of those being impacted by layoffs are in business functions, rather than tech roles. Additionally, there are increasingly opportunities for IT jobs outside traditional tech companies, so it’s important to look beyond just the tech provider community to truly grasp the state of the tech talent crunch.” 

“Many of the reductions in force from the last several months were largely driven by public companies seeking to optimize share prices and to satisfy shareholders’ desire for reduced spending. While these layoffs have been described as an adjustment after over-optimistic hiring, data shows that new hires were not necessarily impacted.” 

“Instead, recent layoffs affected a broader range of employees and initiatives as organizations prioritize key products and services to position their company for specific market opportunities. In fact, Gartner research found that the companies behind the 10 largest layoffs in tech talent still employ over 150,000 more people in total than at the beginning of 2020”, she says. 

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“It’s critical that business and IT leaders do not misinterpret this current wave of layoffs. There will likely be more swings and volatility as the market works its way through economic turbulence, ongoing pandemic adjustments and a shift in prioritization of skills. However, the tech talent crunch will continue long after current turbulence has subsided.” 

“Tech leaders responsible for mobilizing growth through digitalization must look beyond the noise of headline-catching layoffs to see the signals coming from the market”, she says.

“The IT skills shortage is critical, with CIOs losing their talented employees faster than they can hire them. In key function areas, like data science, software engineering and cybersecurity, the talent supply remains as tight or tighter than before.”

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