New data from LinkedIn shows this year will once again be dominated by heavy demand for tech skills with data wranglers and cyber security experts still in high demand.

The Jobs on the Rise 2022 report dropped last week, showing the top 15 highest growing jobs in Australia – and around half of them are in IT.

LinkedIn used data gathered from users to calculate the jobs which have seen the most growth between January 2017 to July 2021.

The fastest growing IT jobs for 2022 are:

  1. Machine Learning Engineer
  2. Site Reliability Engineer
  3. Data Engineer
  4. Cyber Security Specialist
  5. Back End Developer
  6. Head of Engineering
  7. User Experience Researcher

LinkedIn said now is a time when employees are looking for a change, and it’s not just because of the new year.

“Industries have been upended, while at the same time, many workers have left their jobs in search of something new,” Microsoft’s social media company said.

“These shifts have ignited what we’ve deemed the Great Reshuffle, leaving professionals wondering where the workplace is headed and what role they want to play in it.”

According to recruitment firm Robert Half, the talent shortage that has been a feature of the IT landscape for years is only set to continue in 2022 – especially as less than 20 percent of the business leaders it recently surveyed said they would freeze hiring or downsize staff numbers this year.

So as long as you have the skills employers want, you should be in an advantageous bargaining position.

Head hunters galore

Director of a recruitment firm, Robert Half, Nicole Gorton, said the strong competition talent meant there was a lot of poaching happening – especially for roles that “adapt business operations or drive revenue-generating initiatives”.

“This primarily includes technology roles in data management, software development, and cyber-security as well as financial accountants and financial analysis roles within finance,” she said.

Employers have to be especially careful with keeping staff on the books given Australian IT workers are not particularly keen to stay with their current employer.

Gartner’s Future of Work Reinvented report found only 18 percent of IT professionals in Australia and New Zealand had “high intent” of sticking around – markedly lower than their European counterparts, 40 percent of whom intend to keep working at their current job.

Gender gap

LinkedIn included some extra information data alongside each of the roles in its report, although they’re not all particularly helpful.

Accompanying salary data for some jobs tends to be missing, for example, and the range for Machine Learning Engineer – A$50,000-A$229,000 – is so wide to be almost meaningless.

Troublingly, LinkedIn’s inclusion of gender distribution for its Jobs on the Rise list shows a heavy skew toward males in the IT profession.

Women made up just 20 percent of the Machine Learning Engineer, Cyber Security Specialist, and Back End Developer roles, but less than 10 percent of the Head of Engineering class. User Experience Researcher was the only IT-related field to have more women than men.

Some other non-tech high-growth jobs highlighted by LinkedIn were dominated by women, including Talent Acquisition Specialist, Workforce Specialist, and Operations Support Officer.

This article by Casey Tonkin was first published in the ACS newsletter, Information Age