4 tech recruitment trends to watch in 2020

...and how they are impacting skills in demand

Virtual connections between a distributed network of teams.
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Heading into a new decade, what are the standout trends in the technology space that is going to impact the skills in demand?

Potentia shares four trends to prepare for:

The answer lies in the computer

Day-to-day business decisions are becoming increasingly data-backed. 

The contemporary approach to constructing design, services and products (and more recently people management frameworks) is to harness hard data that provides the insight to build plans and execute against them.

In turn, this is having a significant impact on hiring. While in the recent past, recruiting data engineering/science/AI/ML experts may have had an ad-hoc and necessity feel to it, more organisations are asking themselves about where these areas actually add value (before snap hiring). 

They’re asking how problems can be solved through data and as a result, how these people can be embedded into the business outside of classic IT/digital departments. 

Also, with the growing importance of governance and risk, we’re seeing a definitive shift away from ‘tech-centred’ data thinking and towards driving business value. 

We’re seeing a definitive shift away from ‘tech-centred’ data thinking and towards driving business value. 

Skills in demand

  • Data-driven design (with a deeper focus on UX research) 
  • Product-thinking and management – enterprise productization of:
    • Product marketing and data-driven approaches
    • Product management practices/principles
    • Product strategy, vision and roadmap
  • Contemporary leadership
    • Internal systems with data-driven performance management
  • Data 
    • The rise of “business analytics”, with these professionals more in demand (over technical experts)
    • Data storytelling and visualisation 

Looking for ‘people-people’

The focus on contemporary people leadership is all about increasing autonomy and unity amongst teams. This means attracting and leading people with empathy and connecting individual drivers to business purpose. As mentioned earlier, data is also playing its part. When people develop capability and have access to data that their work generates, it makes it easier for them to monitor and manage their own output.

When people develop capability and have access to data that their work generates, it makes it easier for them to monitor and manage their own output

Skills in demand

  • Contemporary leadership
    • Servant leadership
    • Data-driven performance management
    • Purpose-driven motivation and unity 
    • Empathetic and communicative leadership styles

It’s all about customer-centricity 

While the idea around customer-centricity has been around for years, the cadence of change and competition in today’s commercial environment means it takes on even more significance. 

From transformation programmes, to developing or altering projects and products, the customer must be held firmly in the centre of any decisions made. When this is done, value and benefit to the customer can then be delivered in a swift and intuitive manner.

Skills in demand

  • Product-thinking and management – enterprise productization of:
    • Product marketing and data-driven approaches
    • Product management practices/principles
    • Product strategy, vision and roadmap
  • CX & onboarding
    • Retention strategies and data-driven customer-focused interventions
  • Enterprise change management
    • Operation model definition
    • Customer-centricity and value-focused service design

If desperation trumps diversity, the brogramming culture will proliferate

With New Zealand investment being sucked up by software exporters (both small and large) and poured straight into development teams, the current market is starved of developers – escalating salary and EVP demands. 

So, how is this different to previous years? More than ever before, there is a deep awareness that the male-dominated engineering teams of old are vulnerable to a lack of diversity of thought and chest-beating brogramming. This gender balance is being addressed by contemporary employers and as a result, it’s not uncommon for hiring managers to request more women during recruitment processes.  

More than ever before, there is a deep awareness that the male-dominated engineering teams of old are vulnerable to a lack of diversity of thought and chest-beating brogramming

Skills in demand

  • Frontend developers
  • Backend developers
  • Fullstack developers
  • Test automation
  • Test engineers
  • Diversity-based hiring practices 

Heading into a new decade, what are you seeing in the market? Are there any trends that stand out? We’d love to hear your thoughts. 

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