'Micro' IT skills shortages persist

Only a couple of computer specialisms being reported as scarce by a national staffing body does not mean there are not isolated shortages of contract IT skills around the country.

Explaining as much, recruiters at Jenrick IT said they wouldn't necessarily expect the unprecedented demand they are seeing for Flash Actionscript developers to register nationwide.

"This is very much 'micro' demand and not 'macro'" said the agency's managing director Philip Fanthom, pointing to a handful of niche London-based clients exploring social media.

"Therefore it probably does not relate to the broader national skill demand that the monthly Reports On Jobs by the Recruitment and Employment Confederation refer to."

The more widespread shortages of IT skills centre on C++, Fanthom said, particularly for IT contractor recruiters looking for candidates to work on Sybase in a UNIX environment.

But according to IT staffing firm IntaPeople, it is IT workers with C# who, alongside ASP.NET developers, have been the most sought-after in the first six months of this year.

Java J2EE Developers have the second hottest skills, followed by PHP Developers, then Business Analysts, with Data Administrators in fifth place, said the firm's director Phil Handley.

"Given the enduring popularity of C# and Java among UK businesses, the top of the list is not a massive surprise," he reflected.

"What has been clear during the first half of this year is that a significant number of firms are turning to their IT departments to uncover new ways of reducing operational costs and writing more business."

IntaPeople signalled that its jobs adverts showed a larger than expected volume of senior IT appointments, indicating clients "are willing to make grand scale changes to put themselves on a firm footing as the economy picks up."

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