Is there a shortage of talent in the software sector?

is there a shortage of talent in the software industry?

It’s no secret that software engineers are the men and women that have helped some of today’s biggest brands forge their competitive advantage. Where would companies like Apple, Microsoft and Facebook be without an army of talented and committed software engineers (SEs) behind them?

I’m not suggesting that companies such as these will struggle to recruit the best talent; big brands will always attract the best people. But rather the start-ups and the small to medium sized enterprises that require the expertise of a quality SE to grow and develop their businesses and become the Apples of tomorrow.

Forbes recently reported a distinct shortage of SE talent in the ever-prominent Silicon Valley and the San Francisco Bay area as a whole. If the hub for tech-innovation in the US is struggling with SE recruitment then this doesn’t bode well for the rest of the World!  Jerome Young, a technical recruitment specialist, puts this difficulty in recruiting SEs down to various reasons, but perhaps one of the most important is the sheer number of emails and cold-calls an SE in San Francisco Bay receives each week.  Young reports that “one SE told me that he can receive over 10 emails in a week about different positions.  No wonder there is a very low rate of response to cold-calls or email”.

This situation is not limited to Silicon Valley and the USA, however.  In fact Computer Weekly reports that a shortage in software engineers is pushing up salaries within the UK:

“Pay rates for software engineers are defying the downturn amid concerns that the UK faces a growing shortage of skilled programming professionals.”

Despite salaries on offer which are far beyond market rates for programmers and engineers, companies in London and the South-East are facing a talent short-fall. With such tempting packages on offer, even for those with no management or leadership experience, why are UK companies finding it so difficult to recruit?  Nicklas Richardson, Head of Development for Telemetry, believes it’s due to the the fact that tech start-ups who were backed by venture capitalists were offering salaries higher than market rates; pushing other recruiters out of contention.

Amidst an already shaken economic climate, the shortfall in local talent within the software development sector may be enough to force recruiters to look overseas to fill positions. Have you experienced any difficulty finding a software engineer? Let us know in the comments!

About the author:

Russell Scott has been the Managing Director of Sycura since its initial inception and enjoys writing about software solutions and IT infrastructure. Sycura offer cloud computing solutions and IT Support in Hertfordshire and the UK as a whole.


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