The most in-demand skills for tech scaleups in 2022 — Talent Works International
To effectively plan a talent acquisition strategy, it’s essential to consider the skills needed within your organisation and that are in high demand. For one thing, it’s a way of keeping an eye on your closest competition. For example, if they’re bringing in data scientists, it may be a clue that your scaleup needs to ramp up its data analysis. However, knowing which skills are in high demand will also help your talent acquisition efforts. For example, as a tech scaleup, you may not have the highest recruitment budget, and therefore knowing which roles will see increased competition and could be harder to fill will help you to strategies.
At the time of year when many of us are drawing up plans for talent acquisition and hiring in the next year, knowing which skillsets to look out for or which will take a little longer to source could give you a competitive advantage. For example, it can help you to plan when you begin hiring for specific roles to align with your growth plans; some high-demand skills may take longer to recruit for. Plus, it can help you to identify a high-quality candidate, as you’ll know which skills are seen as most valuable in your industry.
The most in-demand skills are constantly changing. As consumer needs change, business priorities alter, and so do the skills needed to achieve goals and objectives. Right now, we’re seeing a surge in demand for digital and tech skills, as this is where consumer behaviours are going. But will the skills in demand in 2022 be the same as those everyone is searching for right now?
To help you plan ahead, we’re investigating the most in-demand skills for tech scaleups in 2022.
Data Science jobs have been in demand for a few years now, but in 2022 we can’t expect this demand to disappear. As we use more and more data, companies need people to compile, analyse and process it. Moreover, if scaleups wish to make better-informed decisions in the future, data will be critical no matter what industry they work in.
Therefore, those with experience in data science and analytical skills will go far in 2022. Many data scientists are now also proficient in R and the ability to write code and use machine learning and AI. Data is the most valuable commodity globally, and therefore, people who can analyse and make sense of this will be incredibly valuable to your scaling tech business.
More employees than ever are now working remotely, and in 2022, it’s unlikely that we’ll all be rushing back to the office full-time. This means that cloud computing skills like migration and deployment, cloud security and an understanding of serverless architecture will be vital for many more businesses. In addition, remote workforces need to function from almost any location. Teams need access to data and files wherever they’re working. Even if the infrastructure is now in place (let’s face it, we’ve been working from home for almost two years, so it should be), scaling tech businesses will need to hire people to maintain and constantly improve these systems as remote work becomes the norm.
Again, as we’re all working remotely and technology is becoming an integral part of our daily lives, there’s more need than ever for cyber security skills within companies. A reliance on the cloud to save files puts scaling tech businesses more at risk; plus, without the security of your office network connections and infrastructures, your scaleup could be more vulnerable to attacks.
A cyber attack could be detrimental to a growing tech business, especially if you handle a lot of data, so it makes sense that more companies are hiring cyber security professionals.
Cyber security skills include coding, networking, incident handling and response, analytical skills, and much more. In addition, they need great IT experience and know all about the specific systems used within your business.
The demand for people skilled in blockchain technology is increasing rapidly, especially for startups and scaleups. Crypto professionals are in high demand as consultants and advisors in various industries. It’s no longer just about cryptocurrency. Blockchain is essentially a decentralised database that provides a safe and secure environment for transactions, eliminating single points of failure and making for tamperproof records of transactions. Therefore, as more transactions are made online, blockchain development is becoming an in-demand skill. It’s being used by tech giants like Amazon, Microsoft and Oracle and in industries such as telecoms, healthcare and financial.
Blockchain developers must create a blockchain network and understand the architecture, so they need to know a range of programming languages and have vast knowledge.
UX Design is another skill set that is set to explode in 2022. As more customer experiences move online, UX designers play a vital role in maximising transactions and perfecting the user journey. From prototyping, user research, design software and application development, UX skills are broad but vital. A good user experience means a higher chance of customers returning, a higher percentage of purchases on an e-commerce site and more conversions. So it’s becoming as vital as your customer service skills.
But UX design is not as simple as designing an app or webpage; good UX design needs to be research-driven, tested and constantly analysed and improved. Moreover, in 2022, more businesses will realise the importance of their online and in-person customer journeys, which means UX design skills will be even more in demand.
DevOps skills have been in demand for the last few years, and it’s not going away. These engineers supervise coding, scripting and development while managing the IT infrastructure. They’re an essential hire for tech scaleups as they oversee your tech stack. DevOps engineers and skills allow businesses to constantly improve their processes and optimise the performance of their apps, websites and products to ensure maximum efficiency. In a tech scaleup, they could be crucial to growth.
Currently, DevOps skills are more in demand than any other IT-related skill. They need a very varied skillset from the technical skills of a senior developer (to allow them to create high-quality code and use various complex tools) and management and communication skills. So it’s no surprise that scaleups and large enterprises are fighting for these skillsets.
Many think of robotics as one of the skills of the future, but the truth is, the future is here. Robotics is being used in healthcare, manufacturing and agriculture, to name but a few industries. As this technology advances in the next few years, we expect the skills to be more in demand, primarily through scaling tech businesses.
Robotics skills include artificial intelligence and machine learning. We’ve found these crucial in helping Motional to build autonomous cars. Engineering is also needed, from mechanical and industrial to electrical and computer engineering. Therefore, programming languages like C, C++, Python and Java are essential and mathematics skills.
But it’s not just technical skills that are in demand…
Technical skills are the most in-demand for school leavers and graduates, but social skills are coming in closely. We’ve spoken before about the role of soft skills in the tech industry, and it’s not something that’s going to go away. Years ago, tech talent worked behind the scenes delivering results, but now, as we become more tech orientated, they’re needed to step into managerial and advisory roles. In addition, Tech talent has to engage with the rest of the business, whether training in cyber security or talking to executives about technical growth plans. Therefore, social skills like communication, the ability to present, and other soft skills are becoming more critical. In fact, these skills could be what separates a good tech hire from a brilliant one and could help your scaleup to identify future leaders.
For scaling businesses, soft skills are almost as essential as technical skills. As they often have a small team and growth is fast-paced, scaleup leaders need to hire the right people, not just those capable. Technical skills can be trained and refined. However, attitude and soft skills like communicating are harder to develop. It takes the right sort of person to thrive in a scaling business; you need people who can succeed on their own, ideas, and those who can be agile and adapt to different situations.
According to research from The Scaleup Institute, 70% of scaleup leaders are now looking for critical thinking and solving problems when they hire talent. The next most important skill is cognitive flexibility (being able to think about more than one thing at once) at 44%, as well as service orientation (42%) and emotional intelligence (41%). This research shows that many scaleup leaders want employees who can anticipate, recognise and meet the needs of others, which is understandable when a team is growing. Scaling businesses need people who can think for themselves, use their initiative and don’t need to be micromanaged; otherwise, it’s going to cause problems down the line as you try to grow. Scaleups are no place for hand-holding, so make sure you put out the right employer brand messaging to attract the right sort of people, not just talented people.