New Zealand businesses will go to battle in the pursuit of recruiting cloud and security expertise in 2018, as the technology industry once again faces a skills shortage.
As digital transformation deployments increase across the country, cloud and security will underpin board-level strategies in the next 12 months, as organisations seek both internal and external guidance.
Backed up by EDGE Research, cloud and security rank second and third respective on partner investment priorities in 2018, behind only managed services.
Crucially, customer investment plans in New Zealand centre around cloud, followed by security and end-user computing.
Furthermore, 45 per cent of Kiwi partners are ‘ready and selling’ digital transformation strategies, with 23 per cent currently ‘ready and discussing’.
Such increased levels of adoption will have ramifications on the local recruitment industry, with cloud engineers and cyber security specialists expected to be in high demand during the next 12 months.
“New Zealand’s technology market will continue to be driven by digital transformation, cloud based services, cyber security and data projects,” Hays New Zealand managing director, Jason Walker, said.
“In the first half of 2018, we expect to see ongoing demand for DevOps experts in response to the focus on website reliability and the rise of agile environments. Employers want candidates with cross functional digital skills.”
Specifically, Walker said cloud engineers and architects will continue to be sought as organisations look for an engineer to support migration plans to the cloud.
“Security professionals will continue to be required as more organisations bring this function in-house and respond to the never-ending and increasing number of threats,” he added.
“Meanwhile, network engineers will remain in demand as back-up and disaster recovery becomes more of a concern for organisations.”
Outlined via the latest Hays Jobs Report - spanning January to June 2018 - onsite help-desk professionals will also be required as corporate businesses bring this function back in-house.
“There is a growing trend towards providing onsite help-desk support so that staff can interact and receive an immediate resolution,” Walker added.
A channel of coders
In the context of developers, expertise will be sought across .Net and business intelligence capabilities, in response to the continuous demand for the development of software.
Unveiled during EDGE 2017, in conjunction with Tech Research Asia, for the channel to profit from digital and cloud technologies, development capabilities must be created.
“We are seeing a rise in low code, no code solutions in the market driven by increasing containerisation and micro-services,” Tech Research Asia executive consultant Mark Iles explained.
Backed up by EDGE Research, Iles said 41 per cent of partners are already cutting code, with 17 per cent expecting to join the party within the next 12 months.
“This allows customers to develop specific business applications much more rapidly than before and will be a huge part of future projects,” he added. “Skills or collaboration in this area will be key for partners in the future.”
According to Walker, SilverStripe developers will also be high on the list for businesses locally.
“SilverStripe is a popular content management system (CMS),” he explained. “It’s also a New Zealand-based product that many organisations are using to customise web applications.
“Python developers will be another area of need since Python is an easy to learn, reputable coding language that is growing in popularity.
“Also, UX/UI designers will be required in response to the growth of digital technology, especially mobile, which has led to a desire to create more advanced solutions to better engage with end users. Senior PHP developers who are capable of heavy coding and website development while also possessing client-facing soft skills are in short supply.”
Local labour market
According to Statistics New Zealand’s labour market data, unemployment in September 2017 was the lowest since the December 2008 quarter.
In addition, Hays expects 40 per cent of employers to increase permanent staff levels in the financial year to June 2018, with the next six months ahead looking set to be positive for job seekers.
“Momentum will continue this half with general business confidence and a strong economic environment leading to market growth and associated job creation,” Walker added.
“New government policies will create jobs for policy, communications, administration and finance specialists, digital technology and digital marketing professionals will be in high demand and planned infrastructure works across the country will see civil jobs boom.”
Meanwhile, Walker also highlighted the need for non-routine workers, in response an influx of emerging technologies in the market.
“The rapid rise in robotics and automation will create highly-skilled roles that require people with particular knowledge and expertise in non-routine and non-repetitive tasks,” Walker added.