Strong Growth in IT Jobs Impacts Competition and Wages

It’s no secret that information technology (IT) jobs are increasingly important and that qualified IT professionals are much sought after. After all, we live in an increasingly technological world.


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Companies that have strong IT infrastructures can hope to be more efficient, more proficient, and more well-connected than those that are lacking in their IT abilities. And that’s just on the “offensive” front. Companies today also face significant threats from the growing risks of cyberattacks.
But business leaders and hiring managers may be surprised to know just how sought-after IT professionals are.

Strong IT Infrastructure Creates Competitive Advantage

The University of British Colombia (UBC), recently reported on a new study it conducted, in conjunction with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). According to Giovanni Gallipoli—one of the study’s coauthors and an associate professor from the Vancouver School of Economics at UBC. “The future of jobs is in IT, and IT-intensive tasks.”
“Growth and productivity in jobs involving IT tasks are very strong, and workers who can perform such tasks have a clear competitive advantage in the labour market,” adds Gallipoli.
One of the most interesting findings of the study has to do with the relative growth rate of IT-intensive jobs like computer software, big data, and cybersecurity.
Demand in these areas has grown by 19.5% from 2004 to 2017 compared to only 2.4% for less IT-intensive jobs over the same period. That translates into more than eight times the job growth for IT-intensive jobs.

Recruiting Tech Talent

So what does this mean for recruiters? There are a couple of factors at play, and they both suggest the need to ensure that wages for these much sought-after staff members are competitive.
The increase in the number of jobs available for IT professionals, and a lower number of bodies to fill them, has the potential to push wages up as companies compete for top talent. At the same time, the UBC and MIT study suggests that because these jobs are not easy to automate or offshore, companies are likely going to have to open up their pocketbooks if they want to stay competitive in an increasingly IT-heavy world.
Another key point: Even if your IT bench strength is strong, it’s a good idea to take a look at your pay practices to minimize the odds of these sought-after professionals’ jumping ship to take positions elsewhere—they have ample opportunity to do just that.