The SaaS industry is thriving right now, with revenue in the UK estimated to reach £7.2 billion in 2021 and grow to £10.9 billion by 2025. Millions of organisations have been upgrading their technology access, motivated by the need to streamline business processes for competitivity. As a result, investors have been paying keen attention to the movements of the tech industry, and UK tech investment reached a record £13.5 billion in September 2021 (nearly three times the size from the same period in 2020).
As a top-down effect, job opportunities are growing, and skilled, qualified candidates (especially in cloud computing and software engineering) are experiencing higher bargaining power and improved career prospects. However, the sunshine comes alongside a storm: executive, leadership positions are becoming increasingly harder to fill.
City A.M reported that there were 1.6 million active job openings in the UK during a week in August, and, of those, 68,929 adverts were directly for programmers and software development professionals - creating a competitive job market, and hinting at a higher problem: a vast labour shortage facing our market.
“The Brexit finalisation during the pandemic has put a halt on easy entry for European workers to fill in the gaps, making the UK unattractive to the next generation of international technology talent.”
With technology advancements powered by the industry’s high investment, current UK-based software engineers can expect increased workloads, driving low turn-over, decreasing employee wellbeing, and reduced quality of output that results in high technical debt assumption. Backend Developers, Penetration Testers, Cloud Engineers, and DevOps Engineers alike can expect increasing pressure to stay up-to-date with the latest technology advancements, as a lack of labour availability means widening skillsets are essential to keep businesses running. Teams can expect to undertake new training, with software companies likely willing to front-the-bill to increase survival rates.
Here’s what you need to know as a tech professional going into 2022.
New Technology Trends
Technology trends have long set the standard for attractive job perspectives, and software engineers should consider their options for the future.
Alternatively, SQL has recently been in the limelight for offering vast benefits as a back-end development option for large businesses, due to its ability to scale easily with low costs. Although concerns have arisen about the future of SQL, currently it’s an attractive language to pick up as an extra skill. Its practicality and functions are easy to use, making the learning curve smooth. Self-taught individuals are predicted to pick up the basics within 2-3 weeks if they already can use another scripting language.
2. Artificial Intelligence
Specialising in Artificial Intelligence as a software engineer is highly advised for anyone looking for a secure future in the technology market, with 94% of job postings related to AI requesting software engineers. While common misperceptions would lead many to believe machine learning engineers are the main demand for improving AI access, experts believe these job roles need to work symbiotically with each other. The Artificial Intelligence software market is expected to grow 54% year on year, reaching $22.6 billion in value worldwide by 2025. With such a huge growth forecast, salaries are also heading skyward - with AI engineers earning a starting salary of over £40,000 - close to the cap of general software engineers, who earn between £25,000-£50,000.
3. Quantum Computing
Data scientists are set to make a fortune in Quantum Computing, a niche yet growing industry with an average CAGR of 25.40% over the forecast period from 2021 to 2030. Quantum Computing isn’t expected to replace classical computing any time soon, but big data capabilities are vital in our digital landscapes. Complex calculations are expected to generate results hundreds of millions of times faster, and those with the skills to work in this industry should seriously consider it. Despite its incredibly challenging nature, job roles in Quantum Computing are reported to be fulfilling and you can be a part of the future of technology.
Developers and product engineers are in high demand at cryptocurrency firms at the moment. Starting a career in blockchain involves understanding the basics (detailed below), and promises a progressive career ripe for advancement. If you love embracing new technologies and working on different projects day by day - then this might be the option for you.
A massive issue facing the technology market at the moment is business distrust as a result of cyberattacks and data leaks. Updated UK regulations hold firms directly responsible for basic good practices, including maintaining encryption, antivirus, and 2FA for password protection. As a result, cybersecurity salaries across the sector are rising, with a projection of 1,000,000 unfilled jobs in the cybersecurity industry by 2022 alone. A huge drive has started to encourage students to learn cybersecurity at University, as the future of tech is entirely reliant on protecting critical business infrastructure.
The Perfect Time for a Career Change
Our market has peaked for technology professionals, engineers, and data analysts wanting more out of their careers. With so many job opportunities driven by advancing technologies, those with vital skills and qualifications will experience easy transitions to workplaces that align with their goals for the future.
Filling Skill Gaps in Workplaces
Contract negotiations, benefits packages, and salary wages will encourage a shift in labour and businesses should anticipate the chance to fill much-needed gaps within their workforce.
For firms looking to fill executive and leadership roles, we suggest:
Investing in employer branding
Proactively searching for qualified candidates, rather than reactively looking
Working with expert, niche recruitment teams
At Forward Role, we’ve seen a vast expansion in technology labour demands and currently have over 80 Technology opportunities with some of the UK's biggest and most exciting brands!
We’re always looking for candidates wanting to be connected to dynamic job roles, so if you’ve been searching for new and exciting employment opportunities, we’d love to help. Or, if you’re looking to grow your technology function, get in touch with us.