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Forrester's 2023 European outlook predicts that it takes 69 days to fill tech roles, compared to 41 days for the overall market. As more businesses understand the importance of having in-house data and analytics experts, the challenge of onboarding these skills will become increasingly important to overcome.

The job market is currently experiencing the lowest unemployment rate in over 50 years, but there are still factors to take into account as we transition into the new year. While some changes are being seen across all industries, others are unique to the data and analytics field which we explore below.

Increase in contract work

One of the biggest changes that are becoming more prevalent in the job market is the rise of contract work. Given the current economic climate and shifts brought about by the global pandemic, organisations are seeking more flexibility in their workforce. This has led to an increase in project-based business models and temporary or contract roles.

Hiring contract workers give both organisations and employees flexibility. The ability to hire someone for a specific IT project, without the commitment of a permanent hire allows them to be more fluid with projects and also mitigate the cost risks of increasing headcount.

On the other hand, contract work provides talented tech professionals with the ability to accumulate additional knowledge and experience working in different types of organisations and meeting and working with other specialists.

Learn multiple programming languages

As technology and technical requirements continue to advance, data and analytics professionals will come under increasing pressure to become literate in more than just one programming language; competency in several languages, such as SQL, Python, R, and Java, will become a requirement for these positions. The technologies in this field are constantly evolving, allowing data and analytics professionals to reach new capabilities and gain deeper insights from data.

The most sought-after programming languages on the market right now are SQL and Python. However, having a working knowledge of multiple languages is becoming a requirement, rather than a nice to have. Additionally, experience in specific cloud technologies, such as Amazon Web Services (AWS), is becoming increasingly important. AWS currently holds a 33% share of the cloud infrastructure market and is the top platform employers are seeking experience in.

While experience is crucial, having the credentials to showcase your knowledge is equally important. Getting certified in technologies such as AWS, Snowflake, and Azure is a valuable marker of competency for employers and can give job seekers a competitive edge.

Soft Skills becoming increasingly important

While technical skills are important, soft skills are becoming just as critical in the data and analytics field. Data professionals need to be able to turn data into interpretable information that others in their organisation can understand. In order to do this well-developed skills in project management, problem-solving, and cross-departmental collaboration are required.

The industries that are currently the largest hirers of data professionals, such as consultancy, financial services, and technology, will continue to stand strong in 2023.

However, with predictions of a recession in the UK economy until mid-2024, many projects may be put on hold. With that being said, it’s increasingly important for data professionals to have the agility to apply their skills to different industries. The demand for data won't be shrinking any time soon, but the types of organisations that are looking for those skills may well change. If you are looking for your next data and analytics hire or thinking about a new role please get in touch with one of our recruitment experts.

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