Despite the numerous rounds of layoffs in the tech scene, most companies and their data teams are intending to grow in 2023, with 67 per cent of data teams in Canada hiring, a new study by Hello World Recruitment, a data engineer, data scientist and data analyst recruitment company headquartered in Toronto, reveals.
The company interviewed 100 data and talent leaders across 18 industries in Canada during the first 3 months of 2023.
Though hiring is happening, the pace it moves at will not be as rapid as during the post-pandemic period, and will be approached with more care, the study found.
Even though big tech has been through intense layoff phases, companies reported they are still hiring for some strategic teams or products that are in growth mode. In fact, 65 per cent of financial services companies and 67 per cent of software companies interviewed are planning to hire in 2023, as are 73 per cent of consulting companies.
In addition, while companies are navigating through uncertainty, data leaders said they are using their budget to hire now, and over two thirds are planning in doing so during the year.
Hello World Recruitment’s study looked into specifically what data leaders are looking to focus on for the rest of this year.
Six topics were highlighted in the survey:
Cloud migration – Many organizations are still working their way towards cloud technologies. Data and cloud engineers are still in demand this year, as they appear to be the cornerstone of any data infrastructure, the study says. In fact, 43 per cent of leaders declared data and cloud engineering to be a key focus for 2023.
Scalability – Whatever impactful models are being built, they need to be used, scaled and monetized, so machine learning operations (MLops) engineers are sought-after, though it’s still a niche skill-set. Just over 30 per cent of leaders said data scientists are also a key focus this year.
AI – As ChatGPT and AI platforms continue to be a prime focus, there is more demand from C-levels to leverage AI, the study says. The research also emphasized the importance of AI, saying that AI as a service is going to grow in 2023, making it easier for data teams to incorporate and spread innovation through the entire organization without necessarily investing in an entire AI research team. This can also contribute to attracting and retaining employees who are interested in working with a popular technology.
Data governance (DG) – Whether they are at the beginning of their journey, or are scaling their data infrastructure, DG remains foundational for many leaders.
Digital transformation – Digital analytics continue to remain a priority for organizations in order to keep them competitive and gain market share online.
Operational performance – Budgets are under scrutiny in 2023, Hello World Recruitment reports, so data analysis is going to play a vital role in maximizing outcomes and helping companies navigate uncertain times.
The company also asked data talent and leaders if they are currently in a recruitment freeze. Despite high inflation and high interest rates, along with a low gross domestic product growth, only just over ten per cent have frozen hiring.
Despite being highly affected by layoffs, more than 80 per cent of companies in the software industry that were interviewed reported that they have not stopped recruitment efforts. In addition, consulting companies were a good indicator for the recruitment activity in the economy, the research found. Hello World Recruitment’s interviews with consulting companies revealed that just five per cent of them have suspended recruitment.