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Skilled IT talent remains hard to find in Canada

New study finds that only eight per cent 8 per cent of CIOs expect to expand their IT departments

There is some good news for the channel coming out of the latest Robert Half Technology IT Hiring Index and Skills report; 84 per cent of technology executives polled said they are somewhat or very optimistic about their companies’ growth prospects in the next three months.

That good news comes with some bad news as respondents said the challenge to find IT professionals in the functional areas of networking (19 per cent), software development (14 per cent) and security (12 per cent) continues.

And, network administration is the skill set in greatest demand, cited by 67 per cent of CIOs question in the Robert Half report.

Windows administration and desktop support followed, both with 63 per cent of the response.

“While our research shows that most organisations are keeping staff levels constant, recruiting challenges continue to surface for IT executives,” said Lara Dodo, a regional vice-president of Robert Half Technology in Canada. “Skilled IT talent remains hard to find, particularly in high demand specialties, such as networking and software development.”

The IT Hiring Index and Skills report is based on interviews with more than 270 CIOs from companies across Canada with 100 or more employees. Executives are asked whether their companies plan to increase or decrease the number of full-time IT personnel on their staff during the coming quarter. The survey is conducted by an independent research firm and developed by Robert Half Technology, a leading provider of IT professionals on a project and full-time basis.

The report uncovered six key findings. They include:

1. The net six per cent increase in anticipated IT hiring activity is down nine points from last quarter’s projection.


Eighty-nine per cent of CIOs plan to maintain their current staffing levels, up four points from the second-quarter forecast.

3.Networking, software development and security professionals are in greatest demand, according to survey respondents.

4. Fifty per cent of survey respondents said it’s challenging to find skilled professionals today, up three points from last quarter.

5.Eighty-four per cent of CIOs are somewhat or very confident in their companies’ growth prospects in the next three months, slightly down from 86 per cent in the prior quarter.

6.Seventy-eight per cent of technology executives expressed confidence that their firms would be making investments in IT projects in the third-quarter.