Posted by Robert Half on 24 June 2017
Technology advancements are driving business change, delivering growth and innovation across multiple sectors and prompting the need for additional IT experts.
According to recent data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), employment in the Information Technology sector has increased by 4.1% since March, adding 8,400 jobs.
In 12 months, the sector has nearly 19,000 additional jobs, representing a 9.6% increase. On top of this, the Australian Department of Employment forecasts a 25.4% growth percentage in the number of IT manager occupations by 2020.*
So what does it mean for your career in Information Technology?
The demand for IT experts
There are several opportunities for IT experts in today’s job market and candidates with niche skills are finding themselves in demand. More and more professionals are therefore looking for new challenges, and companies understand that they have to engage in the ‘war for talent’ to find and recruit top talent.
Big Data, cloud security and mobile technology continue to dominate the IT market, with businesses actively seeking skilled and experienced IT professionals to support innovation and sustain business growth.
The digital boom has no real end in sight. And as a result, the pendulum has swung in the favour of the IT job seeker. The chance to take control of your career is now
What does it all mean for you?
Retaining and finding top IT experts is proving a challenge for employers. And with salaries on the rise for many IT roles, the ball is in your court to build your career. However, this doesn’t mean you can march into your boss's office with ultimatums and demands. Employers still want to see value in the talent they hire and retain, so you have to prove your worth. Determining an employee’s value is critical to companies in order to assemble a workforce that can take their business to greater heights.
Remember to stay factual, compare yourself to how you were 12 months ago and analyse how your responsibilities have changed or increased – this will give you a better idea of your worth. Always approach the pay rise as a conversation. Start by asking “I’d like to talk about my performance and my financial contribution to this company” rather than “I want X per cent more money”. It’ll place you in a better light and keep things open and professional, as opposed to emotional.
If your career needs a change, be prepared to meet stiff competition – many talents IT experts will have the same idea as you. A solid plan of attack is to sit tight and work on building your digital profile. Undertake simple online awareness activities, such as joining in online discussions, updating your resume and LinkedIn profile and sharing relevant and informative information. Attending more networking events and casually meeting more hiring IT managers could also put an unexpected opportunity in front of you.
If you decide to actively look for new work, you need to approach it in the same way as you would a pay rise request. Make sure you’re able to state a business case as to why you’re the best candidate for any job. If you do decide to move on, be careful not to burn any bridges with your current employer – you never know how far professional networks extend.
The market for IT job seekers is optimistic and there are many opportunities to take the next step in your career. It is more important than ever to be able to clearly demonstrate your skills to a potential employer and speak to your manager about your career advancement opportunities to ensure your career heads in the right direction.