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Outsourcing kills the IT job market – what now for IT recruitment?

An article in Computer Weekly highlighted the problem that the salaries for mid-level IT staff have increased due to greater demand due to Outsourcing. Companies need experienced staff capable of overseeing project work, managing virtual teams, negotiating service line agreements and so on (the hidden costs of outsourcing) – but they don’t need the lower level skills because most of those jobs have been outsourced to lower cost economies such as India.

It seems project managers and project leaders have seen quite dramatic pay increases (good news for some), but because all the lower level jobs have been outsourced or ‘offshored’ then there are fewer people to rise through the ranks. SSL (Salary Services Limited) carried out a study which clearly demonstrates the shift. Their research director George Molyneaux is quoted by Computer Weekly as saying that ‘Outsourcing jobs reduces the incentives to get into IT’. Not surprisingly, there are far fewer people taking IT as a subject at University – and there are fewer graduate level jobs in the UK. How on earth are we going to develop the future project managers who will understand the UK IT industry? I think this is a real time-bomb.

Yet the reply from one of the recruitment companies is that we need to increase marketing and highlight that there is a demand for IT people. Does this person think that today’s young people are completely stupid? It is clear from the above analysis that there are fewer jobs and no clear career path. The IT industry cannot continue to dump people like hot potatoes whenever they think they can get them cheaper elsewhere and then expect a good flow of graduates coming into their sector.

Better marketing is not going to resolve the issue. People will only start moving back into IT when they can see there really is a career for them.

There is a podcast about the drop in student numbers and the implications on the following link:Computer Weekly

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