The labor shortage in the IT sector is no longer a surprise to anyone and it seems to be becoming a part of the new norm. According to various forecasts, tens of thousands of new people will be employed in IT companies in the coming years, and alongside already established companies, new firms are opening their doors every day and they too would like to have skilled developers, project managers, or other employees within their ranks, noted Eero Tohver, CEO of Uptime.
The world is becoming more and more technical – there is more technology in today’s phones than in the computer that sent people to the moon – and this means more and more software is needed to control all of it. The business world is also constantly evolving – processes are becoming more digital and there is constant automation going on to achieve ever-increasing efficiency. All of this generates more need for competent people who can turn ideas into reality.
In addition to the emergence of new needs, it should also be noted that everything that’s already been developed is evolving into something bigger and more complex. This means that many companies which have already deployed various digital solutions are now expecting even more from their chosen software.
This will lead to additional development volumes and to an even greater need to find people with the required skills. What also needs to be taken into account is that every day many previously created solutions reach the end of their life cycle and must be replaced by newer systems that meet today’s requirements.
A Boon for Developers
The rapid evolution of the IT sector has created a very favorable environment for developers and other professionals operating in the sector. People interested in the field can be sure that by devoting time and effort to learning the necessary skills today, they will have secure employment for dozens of years to come. Although there are many who think that the best time for starting in the sector was five or seven years ago, the reality is much different.
Given the continued growth potential of the IT world and the clearly skewed situation in the labor market, the best time to enter the sector is today, but also tomorrow, and in two years’ time. You can be relatively certain that if one would to start studying programming on your own today, at a university, or join a well-known retraining program, there will be no reason to fear that the sector will run out of jobs before the skills of the person in question have reached a level where they can start their career.
The rapid growth of the IT sector and new people constantly joining the field is also positive for employees who have been working in the industry for some time. On one hand, the constant need for new and increasingly complex systems means that it is always possible to learn something new, try new technologies, and find solutions to problems that have not been possible before, thus keeping the work interesting and challenging.
On the other hand, each new person joining the team brings new ideas and new approaches along with them, thus enabling the team as a whole to learn something new. While in the more traditional sectors, a young team member who has just joined the industry may be pushed into the role of an apprentice, then in IT companies people can come up with their ideas and approaches from day one – everyone can offer up their ideas and if the team as a whole finds them worthwhile, they will be implemented.
Each Company Needs to Find its Value Proposition
Given the difficult situation in the labor market, it is worth remembering that this problem does not only occur in any particular country. Companies operating in almost all markets are in a similar situation – there is always a higher need for skilled people than there are suitable people available.
Uptime operates in Estonia, Denmark, Poland, Norway, and Switzerland, and we can clearly see these market trends ourselves.
A good example of the difficult situation is several Eastern-European countries, which were markets with lots of untapped potential for IT companies in Western- and Northern-Europe ten years ago. Back then, they offered more potential and opportunities for hiring than their domestic markets. Today, however, these markets have developed rapidly, and skilled people are as hard to find there as anywhere else.
Therefore, in Estonia, Denmark, Poland, and in all our other markets, we have clearly understood that simply offering a high salary is no longer enough to attract top talent, and in addition to the salary, people are increasingly considering corporate culture, softer values, and overall benefits when choosing their employer. At the same time, each person is different and is looking for a slightly different set of values, as such it is clear that different employers are suitable for different people.
Therefore, each company creates a value proposition that is in line with its own characteristics. For some companies, this means offering views from a skyscraper, and for others, daily sushi lunches.
At Uptime, we have seen from our nearly 30 years of experience that the longest and most fruitful working relationships can be created by providing experts in their field with stability, development opportunities, opportunities for decision making and taking responsibility, as well as flexibility. Of course, all other amenities help, but if these fundamental values are lacking, it is difficult to build a motivated team that enjoys their work.
Obviously, it doesn’t mean that finding the right value proposition will solve all hiring challenges immediately – the area of work for IT companies is constantly growing, and there is more room for skilled and hard-working people today, tomorrow, and the day after tomorrow.