Changing trends in IT hiring, new skills in demand

by Shweta Verma    Jul 25, 2013

new skills

IT jobs are not about pure IT skills anymore. Emerging areas like business analytics, data management, mobility and security demand a far deeper understanding of business than was required earlier. IT organizations are therefore looking for people who have a combination of in-depth business understanding and technical expertise to address the upcoming market challenges and not just solve tech issues. According to the Nasscom HR 2013 Survey, apart from IT skills, domain skills and soft skills are also being increasingly sought by recruiters.

Speaking at the recent Nasscom event, Som Mittal, President, Nasscom said, “The IT-BPM sector in India currently employs over 3 million people and will continue to be a net hirer with increased emphasis on skill based hiring.” The IT industry in India over the last few years has evolved considerably – focusing on technology led solutions, changed business and pricing models and reinvented internal structures. This has been driven by the changed global landscape, emergence of disruptive technologies and new customer segments.

Top skills in demand

The Nascom HR survey shows that recruiters are looking for skill base trained in mobility, social media, cloud and big data. The top 5 tech skills in demand are: data scientists, cloud/virtualization, mobile apps, platform engineering and user experience demand. Apart from these, companies are also seeking domain skills in areas like banking, law, mathematics, health and economics. The top 5 soft skills in demand include leadership, customer interaction, communication, problem solving, and presentation skills.

According to the data provided by Nasscom, recruitment based on pure technical skills has gown down drastically from 85% in the period 2000-2006. In 2006-2011, about 65% of people were employed based on technical skills and 22% for domain skills and the balance for soft skills. However, from 2011 onwards, hiring based on technical skills was down to 40%, with domain skills getting equal importance with 40% and soft skills forming the rest at 20%.

Other emerging trends

The traditional methods of head hunting are also being replaced by new age tools like social media, which make it far easier to reach out to the younger generation. “Over 90% companies are increasingly using technology and social media to reach out to employees both current and prospective. This is enabling peer engagement and collaboration, innovation, insight-driven decision making-across geographies, time zones and employees,” said Mittal.

The Nasscom HR Survey also indicated that given business dynamics and just in time hiring, companies are increasingly blending campus and off campus recruitments. In addition, as firms expand their global footprint, global hiring is becoming an important priority.

In order to make up for the existing skill gaps, companies are making investments in regular training programs and development of in-house universities and affiliations with academia. As IT gradually shifts focus from its enabling role as service provider to becoming an integral business partner, the need for business understanding and domain skills will continue to grow.