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Exploring Key Challenges of the IT Skills Gap

By Corinne Bernstein  |  Posted 03-21-2013 Print

When it comes to the IT job market, viewpoints regarding demand for different IT skills and what some consider a serious skills shortage vary. Tech companies, analysts and recruiters have cited shortages of Java, .Net and C++ developers, as well as a tight supply of workers with expertise in cloud computing, mobile computing, social networking and security. At a recent event, Bob Miano, president and CEO of executive search and recruitment firm Harvey Nash plc, referred to an "IT skills cliff" and compared the shortage in certain areas of IT to the fiscal cliff. To some, including frustrated job seekers, skills shortages might not seem so apparent. This is partly due to a complex mix of economic and political issues, ranging from trends in education and immigration, as well as concerns about the U.S. as a technological innovator. Here, Miano offers a perspective on why some might not see a skills gap and should, why not enough students are pursuing technology careers, and where skilled workers might come from.


Little Wage Suppression  The IT skills gap is not a cost issue; it due to a lack of supply, Miano says, adding that the perception that immigration and offshoring lower U.S. IT wages is misguided. "There was minimal suppression of wages both during the dot-com recession of 2000 and 2001, as well as during the rapid growth and influx of 195,000 immigrant IT workers who managed the technology-led recovery from 2001 to 2003," according to Miano.


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