IT contractor market heading for a traditional Christmas

IT contractors look set to miss out this Christmas on any end-of-year surge in demand for their services, a November jobs report suggests.

In fact, at odds with the yearly highs in demand seen at the close of both 2012 and 2013, demand for temporary IT workers came in at 55.5 last month, compared with 56.3 in October.

Although this latest index score from Report on Jobs means IT contractor demand is still on the up (any score over 50 signals growth on the previous month), it compares to 60.5 last November.

It also comes at a time when only a single IT skill is hard to find among contractors -- development, says the report by the Recruitment & Employment Confederation (REC).

All these signs suggest that this Christmas will follow the traditional trajectory of being a quiet time for IT contractors, notably in December, when contractors often get extended to.  

However, shortages in IT among full-time job candidates are pronounced, as REC member agents struggled last month to source Cyber Security, Digital Services, Gaming, Technical Sales and Software skills.

“Talent shortages will be exacerbated if the government imposes restrictions on people coming to the UK from abroad,” said REC chief executive Kevin Green.

“This might result in businesses considering options such as offshoring or relocation abroad; this is a risk we cannot afford.”

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