Five Tech Hiring Trends in 2020

Woman coding on a laptop

COVID changed everything employers planned for their 2020 headcount. As we transition into the second half of the year, companies are reemerging from a standstill with new priorities and objectives. Many are focusing on tech hiring needs.  

Trends come and go – especially in the wake of a global pandemic. However, we are noticing patterns among the wide array of employers in our network. One thing is for certain. Companies must have people with technical skills to survive the unexpected.  

These observations are meant to help tech hiring managers and talent acquisition prepare for hiring now and into the future. 

eCommerce is the Word

When many states issued quarantine orders, stores closed and people were forced to shop online. Business boomed.  

In Q1, Walmart.com’s eCommerce sales grew by 74%. eCommerce provider Shopify reported that its sales grew by 47% to $470 million in Q1. The company also announced the total value of goods sold on its platform increased from $5.5 billion to $17.4 billion from the same time period a year earlier.  

Consumers expect a seamless online shopping experience like that of AmazonAs consumer goods, retail, and food and beverage shift to the digital marketplace, these businesses need developers, software engineers, site managers, and technological leaders to guide them.  

Companies need experienced people to run their eCommerce from the technology side. They have to adapt now because, as McKinsey warns, “the crisis itself may create lasting changes in consumer behavior and health protocols.” 

Bottom line: eCommerce companies are hiring 

The Changing Technology Workforce

Instead of hiring job titles, business leaders have shifted focus to tech skill sets to prepare their company for what’s to come.  

A recent Gartner survey found, “60% of HR executives reported that their CEOs wanted to ensure employees have the skills needed for the future. The FAANG group (Facebook, Apple, Amazon, and Google) has long been used as a proxy for leading performers, and these best-in-class companies are already rethinking their tech hiring strategies, focusing more on underlying skill sets.”  

Of course, a job title is important when listing an opening. But even more valuable is the knowledge a new employee brings. Organizations with forward-thinking leaders who recognize the importance of skill sets are better suited to succeed than those that hire strictly based on role. 

Jobs and Skills in Demand

Almost overnight technology went from an important aspect of business to vital to an organization’s survival. These tech skills remain important to leaders building a sustainable workforce.  

  • AI. Machine learning and artificial intelligence engineers are in demand. These developers must understand big data and stay current on the latest development in this rapidly changing field.  
  • Advertising Technology. Software engineers with a deep understanding of AdTech and marketing technology are extremely valuable. Companies that want to use Google Adwords seek engineers who can leverage the tools to their utmost potential. 
  • Online Shopping. You already know that eCommerce professionals are in high demand. Talentfoot clients are specifically requesting developers with Shopify experience. 
  • Cloud TechnologyCloud migration and development continues to be a top priority. Developers with an understanding of Azure, AWS, and Google Big Query are wanted. Companies need employees with cloud security experience too, to protect their organization from emerging threats.  
  • Cyber Security. Technology career platform Dice observed a dramatic increase in technology job postings beginning in June. Their analysis showed data management and cybersecurity experts were some of the top skills in demand. 
  • Software Developers. No matter the industry, software engineers are needed. According to Clay Kellogg of Terminal, “back-end, full-stack, and front-end engineering jobs are the most popular. The most in-demand skills are Python, React/React Native, and SQL.” 

Cyber Security and Data Protection are Critical

Cyber threats are not a new concern. However, businesses sending thousands of employees to work from home presents new problems 

John Sudekum, content strategist at Dice’s parent company DHI Group explained“Due to the quarantines around the world, the increased usage of digital platforms has created a tsunami of additional data that companies now have to manage and protect.”  

Remote workers cause companies to be more vulnerable to these threats. “Cybercriminals are taking advantage of people working from home. Businesses have had to up their cybersecurity strategy and therefore their hiring. With this in mind, we can see that this occupation was at a 7% increase in Q1 and then showed a 19% increase in April which could suggest immediate demand,” Sudekum said. 

States that are Hiring

Tech hiring slowed dramatically this year, but states are beginning to trend positively with growth. Overall, job postings in the United States are down 27% from one year prior to this publicationHowever, Illinois, Missouri, Washington, Kentucky, West Virginia, and Vermont are emerging as states with elevated job listings.  

While the majority of occupations are not growing, it is a different story for software developers. According to Esmi’s job posting dashboard, most American states have increased job postings for developers. In fact, posting for systems software developers are up 4% from June to July 2020.  

Key Takeaways

The market is beginning to turn with companies looking for new talentOrganizations that want to succeed must invest in people with the technical skills that will continue to future-proof their business. eCommerce is a hotspot that likely won’t burn out quickly. Cybersecurity is even more important with the increase in remote workers. 

Hire with intention. Seek out the individuals who can drive your company forward and meet the changes in the marketplace head-on