Contractors' Questions: Which IT development skills are hot in London?

Contractor’s Question: What’s the latest in Development and DevOps that clients in London want contractors for?

Expert’s Answer: Development roles such as Functional Programming was a leading trend in 2017 with various companies from start-ups levels up to investment banks hiring this talent with particular skills in Python, Haskell, Erlang, Clojure and Scala.

Front End development remained in high demand and has evolved with the creation of new frameworks and libraries such as React and Angular. With this, experienced contractor rates continued to steadily rise throughout the year.

The highest in demand tech skills are HTML5, CSS3, React, Angular2/4, Node, Sketch, OmniGraffle. The importance of UX/UI has many divided in the Front End market by allowing dedicated designers to focus on the seamless UX/UI design which amounts to higher conversion rates for business with zero coding skills required.

Java remains the most prominent development language with a significant increase in vacancy numbers compared to rival .Net and with the recent release of Java 9, 2018 will see companies making the transition to the latest edition.

Java has become the weapon of choice in the Big Data market, owing to its ability to process high volumes of data and it works in harmony with Scala, Spark and NoSQL databases such as Hadoop.

In the Microsoft world, open sourcing .Net with Core is providing exciting changes and is increasing popularity with companies. Azure continues to lead in cloud development and distributed logging systems and messaging queuing such as Kafka or RabbitMQ also showing to be high in demand.

Test Driven Development (TDD) is becoming a must-have skill with Microservices being the architecture of choice. Overall demand in .Net is steady in contract positions although there is a shortage of mid-senior level permanent developers across all industries.

Lastly, DevOps roles continue to go from strength-to-strength with a year-on-year increase of 14% in available opportunities on the market. In addition to the start-up and consultancy markets, the major enterprise clients such as banks and large retail chains have embraced DevOps and have created more roles in this area than previous years. Key skills and technologies are automation tools such as Chef & Puppet and cloud experience with Google, Amazon AWS or Microsoft Azure.

The expert’s answer is based on an extract from the 2018 IT Salary Guide of London recruitment agency Morgan McKinley.

Tuesday 13th Feb 2018