Best tech contractor job skills 2021: what’s hot

Four technology skills are doing brisk business in the temporary IT jobs market as we cross this half-way point of 2021, despite -- or sometimes because of -- the impact of covid-19 still being felt, alongside more age-old pressures like scarcity of permanent candidates, writes Adam Robinson, regional director at digital and technology staffing agency Lorien, a member of APSCo.

1. Data Engineers – commanding approx. £450 per day

Data is becoming a dominant force in how businesses manage, structure and strategise their delivery.

Today, practically every department, in every sector, is data-driven, and this is causing huge demand as companies seek to get more from their data.

In particular, businesses are looking to data to drive efficiencies and cost savings, but there’s also a lot of interest in cross-functional data, as well as infinite possibilities in data to improve profitability and to define new customer opportunities.

The difficulty is that it’s a very candidate-short market, with high demand for permanent staff, which inevitably means high demand for contractors too. 

2. NET developers – commanding approx. £450 per day

 We’ve noticed a rising demand for .NET developer contractors, once again driven by a lack of available permanent resource.

Many clients who held off on major programmes during the uncertainty of Covid-19 have restarted them this year (2021), adding to the back log of delayed development work from the last 12 months. This has resulted in a supply-demand bottleneck that is fuelling the market for .NET developer talent.

IR35 will also be causing some challenges – there are a number of opportunities outside IR35 and competing for scarce skill talent when roles fall inside IR35 can be tough. This combination of heightened demand, lack of permanent talent, and new opportunities means that for those hiring contract .NET developer talent – especially where IR35 applies - the market will seem very heated at the moment.

3. Security Architect – commanding approx. £750 per day +

There are three key areas that we feel are driving demand for freelance security architects who are commanding a premium right now.

The three are; the growth in digital transformations; the rise in identity and access management need (caused by remote working over the pandemic); and the industrial Internet of Things, which is causing businesses to invest significantly in their cybersecurity practices and overall architecture.

4. DevOps Engineer –commanding approx. £500-£600 per day

As more businesses move towards a microservices architecture to improve agility, efficiency and scalability, the need for containerisation software skills such as Kubernetes and Docker, as well as DevOps, is growing at a pace.

These skills are highly specialised with a very small talent pool, and a lot of permanent talent is being picked up by consultancies. The result? Huge demand for contractors.

Click here to search for IT Contract Jobs on ContractorUK 

Friday 4th Jun 2021
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Written by Adam Robinson

Adam has over 15 years’ experience in digital, technology and business change recruitment. As a Regional Director at Lorien, Adam oversees all recruitment activity across Lorien’s Northern customer base in the private and public sector, managing a large team of specialist digital recruiters in Manchester and Leeds. His broad industry experience has seen Adam driving delivery and strategy for some of Lorien’s largest key accounts in retail, financial services, professional services, technology and communications, and consultancy (amongst others).

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