The month of May 2017 was a good one for IT contractors. During May, the demand for IT contractors was at its highest for the past six months, according to the staffing index of Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC).
Demand for IT contractors
The demand for IT contractors jumped to 61.9 during May, according to the statistics provided by REC. In April, the demand was 59.2, while in March it was 60.1.
The figures for May have been the best in recent history. In fact, the last time there was such a high demand for IT contractors was in April 2015 when it reached 62.2.
Reason for high demand
REC’s Report on Jobs has identified three reasons for the surge in demand for certain workers, and these appear to be applicable to freelancers working in the IT industry.
The reasons include staff from EU nations leaving the UK as Brexit approaches, NHS turning to contractors more frequently for short-term needs, and a shortage of cybersecurity specialists in the UK. REC states that the shortage of qualified IT security specialists is not new. For the past three months, members of the REC have reported a lack of IT security professionals available to work as IT contractors.
Staffing agencies have reported that aside from IT security specialists, digital developers, generalist IT contractors, and CAD design specialists are also in short supply.
Full-time IT skills shortage
The situation is worse when it comes to full-time IT employees. There are 14 areas experiencing an acute shortage of IT specialists. These include .Net, Python, cybersecurity, C#, data analytics, Java, and software development, among others.
Tom Hadley, Policy Director, REC, said that in most sectors, more professionals are required so that businesses can grow and expand, and so that consumers can enjoy better and more continuous services.