After ACS Australia’s Digital Pulse 2018 unveiled the jobs of 2023, recruitment agency Hays has revealed the “hotspots” that exist in today’s ICT job market.

In its half-yearly Hays Jobs Report, which surveyed more than 3,000 companies, Hays pointed to a number of specific roles that are are in strong demand.

“Hotspots of skills in demand are emerging,” the report states. “Demand will be high for business analysts with broad experience in business system transformation and project managers with digital exposure.

“Business intelligence analysis and data analysis professionals, particularly data scientists, data engineers and data analysts with experience in SQL and Tableau, are sought to assist organisations in exploiting their big data.”

Adoption of new technologies and digital transformation also makes change managers highly sought after, the report stated.

Cloud engineers, system operator engineers, system architects, infrastructure engineers and system reliability engineers were all listed as in-demand professions.

Cyber security was once more highlighted as growth sector, but Hays warned that cyber professionals must remain agile to succeed.

“Cyber security professionals with an elastic skill-set across all CSIRT functions, penetration testing and information security will be needed, particularly as regulations tighten and in response to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR),” the report says.

Managing director of Hays Australia & New Zealand, Nick Deligiannis said these “hotspots” were part of an upward trend in the job market, but warned of a skills shortage.

“The coming six months will see continued labour market strength, with permanent and temporary hiring intentions suggesting further employment gains,” he said.

“However, employers say the shortage of highly-skilled professionals will impact the effective operation of their organisation or department.”

The report also stressed the importance of business acumen amongst ICT professionals, explaining “the IT department is critical to keeping an organisation competitive, which is why employers want commercially-minded technology professionals.”

Contracts and salaries

A steady influx of upcoming special projects and workloads will keep contract workers in demand, with 33% of companies stating they plan to increase their use of contract staff in the 2018-19 financial year.

Contractor growth is set to be outpaced by a preference for permanent workers, however, with 53% of employers planning on increasing their full-time IT staff count.

In terms of remuneration, the strength of the job market will bring widespread, but relatively modest, pay rises.

Over half (52%) the organisations surveyed stated they planned on giving their ICT workers a pay rise of less than 3% in their next review, while 36% planned on an increase of 3-6%.