IT jobs strong for 2004?

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The Australian IT job market has surged and is looking strong for the next couple of years, according to the Hays IT Personnel 2004 Salary Survey.

The survey revealed strong job opportunities emerging in business intelligence analysis, data warehousing, MIS and decision support systems as well as VoIP Engineering.

The industry was also demanding candidates with knowledge of banking, finance, insurance, security and disaster recovery.

According to the survey, salaries were on the rise and there was also an increased number of contract positions available.

“A rising job market and increased demand are creating candidate shortages," said Peter Noblet, general manager of Hays IT Personnel. 

“The start of the financial year saw IT positions remain hard to find, but post-Christmas saw a definite upsurge in the industry,” he said.

Ben Trigg, a manager at Hays IT Personnel believes the increase in available jobs is going to continue growing. "I think it will go from strength to strength," Trigg said. "We will see an emergence of more and more permanent opportunities coming through.

"The Australian IT market is looking stronger than most of our comparable neighbours," he said.

"One of the biggest trends we've seen in the last nine months is the fact that the 'business' is becoming so much more important to IT."

"Employers are looking more and more for people and not just technical ability. In lower to mid-level positions, having some general skills and being broader is of great value," said Trigg.

"An understanding of the business is extremely important and would certainly give you an advantage over the people you are competing against for a position," he said.

"When you get into more senior positions employers are looking for key technical specialists," he added.

The survey found the average salary in the IT sector had increased 5 to 10 percent.

"We expect that the general demand for candidates over the short- to medium-term will place pressure on employers to improve the speed and candidate attraction strategies of their recruitment processes, and to consider increasing salary levels in order to recruit and retain the best talent," said Noblet.

"Sixty-three percent of IT respondents to our salary survey client questionnaire said they expected to increase salaries between three and 10 percent in coming reviews," according to Noblet.

Trigg said: "We've also noticed a significant upsurge in the amount of contractors required."

Trigg added that, as opposed to stricter contract positions offered previously, employers were now offering contracts in view of permanent positions.

The Hays IT Personnel Salary Survey covered salaries in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Canberra, Perth and New Zealand.

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