The US Bureau of Labor Statistics stated (PDF) on Friday that the number of people employed in the US rose by 223,000 in December 2022, bringing the unemployment rate down to 3.5%. Despite widespread reports of layoffs at digital giants like Amazon and Salesforce, mainstream enterprises are still expected to face severe shortages of qualified IT workers in the coming months.
The leisure and hospitality sector (presumably as a continuation of responses to pent-up demand from the early COVID period), the health care sector (also echoes of the COVID era), and the construction sector have all seen considerable increases in employment.
These figures include everyone from office employees to construction labourers. There are ramifications for those working in technology, indicating that shortages of specialised talents will persist.
More work for the people required to develop, create, programme, and manage such systems, even if businesses choose to either cut down or compensate for their skills shortages using artificial intelligence, robotics, and digital business processes.
“We are continually seeking out for top quality technical resources and hiring to support our development ambitions,” says Raju Seetharaman, senior vice president of IT and transformation at Legal and General America. “The increased demand in the technology sector this year (2022) is the consequence of the increased cash available and special business prospects presented by the pandemic. This is attributable in part to the global slowdown and in part to a reversion to the status quo before to the epidemic “he explains
According to O’Reilly Media president Laura Baldwin, “the skilled labour scarcity will only become worse in the near future” as the need for digital talent continues to expand and the gaps between the available supply and demand for these persons are widened.
Now is the time for leaders to devise innovative strategies for dealing with the shortfall. To ensure that our companies have the resources they need to thrive, we must invest in learning and development if we are unable to attract and retain the talent we need.
It’s not like we have any other choice. When the crisis ends, businesses who let themselves fall behind will be in considerably worse shape than those that didn’t.
Seetharaman believes that machine learning, artificial intelligence, data science, and analytics are all in high demand at Legal and General America. Both cloud computing and cyber security expertise are sought for by his firm because they are “essential to digital transformation and creativity.”
Baldwin foresees a “continued need for cloud engineers, data, and machine learning skills” in the next year. Site reliability engineers, mobile engineers, and those with the expertise to guarantee 24/7/365 access with almost no downtime are in more demand as the world embraces more virtual products, e-commerce, and real-time on-demand needs. The economy has no bearing on the need for these abilities.
While expertise in certain technologies will be in high demand, the most sought-after qualities in a professional are those who can effectively communicate and lead a team. Baldwin argues that “communication skills have always been crucial,” but that they are even more important in today’s increasingly virtual and hybrid workplace. “Tech leaders need to be able to successfully update their teams, pull other teams along on their initiatives, and interact throughout the enterprise.”
Seetharaman argues that “development mentality” is an essential quality for success in Legal and General America. Career opportunities will be greatest for IT experts who have a firm grasp of the business side of things. The whys of things should be studied more than the whats. Stakeholder management and communication skills continue to be crucial for improved cooperation and partnership required to allow corporate success.”
Organizations, many of which may be suffering the headwinds of a harsh economy, will be looking to its technology executives and experts for leadership and advice. Digital solutions will enable methods to survive and even prosper in the chaos, just as Covid did in 2020.
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