London’s Tech Talent – Is there A Shortage In The Capital?

Many graduates of the year 2008 will remember just how hard it was to get a job, let alone secure one with a good salary. Indeed a graduate in software development might expect to start their career on anything from £25,000 to £28,000. However, these days with the increase in the number of tech firms, the hunt is on for the best talent and companies are willing to pay for it.

Outside of the finance industry, tech graduates might now expect to start on anything from £40,000! Within the finance sector, you might even find the starting salary is £50,000 and that’s without your bonus included! The tech industry has literally exploded and is most definitely the place to be if you want to earn a tidy sum!

A surge in demand

The search is on for experienced tech talent and the worry for many companies these days is that they won’t be able to find the people they need. Competition amongst firms is high and this was made extremely clear when a month or so ago, a London-based experienced software engineer was starting to look at leaving his company. He accidently made his CV public on a jobsite and swiftly received an abundance of calls (72 by mid-morning!) He was able to secure 6 interviews in just one day, which is pretty much unheard of before the tech explosion.

Most recruiters would agree that there seems to be shortage of top-drawer tech talent in London. Firms are fighting hard to retain the talent they have, as well as trying to steal top tech talent from their competitors.  The tech talent pool is becoming rather limited and this is causing many companies, who are doing their best to stay on top of all the developments in technology, to struggle.

IT Jobs Watch recently reported that salaries for certain tech jobs, such as javascript developers, have seen a huge increase over the past year, rising by anything as much as 6.25%! The sharp increase in the amount companies are willing to pay for tech talent is another clear sign of how hot the market currently is.

However, unfortunately for many companies, it seems that demand is currently outweighing the supply, with Wanted Technologies, a recruitment analytics business, reporting that the difficulty of hiring a London-based java developer stands at 90 (on a scale of 0-100), with 100 being the most difficult).

Hanging on to the talent

So, it’s very clear that finding the best tech talent in the first place is hard enough but what about when a company has found the perfect tech employee? How do they persuade the person to join their company? If they manage to get the person on board, how do they encourage the person to stay, especially when recruiter after recruiter keeps calling to offer them seemingly better deals!

Everyone is different so it is hard to have a one size fits all approach in terms of attracting and retaining this top talent but you can’t go wrong if you try to stick to the following approach:

– State why your company is so great to work for;

– Explain in detail about all the exciting, challenging technology and transformational projects that you have going on and how they can be involved;

– Offer them a competitive salary. Don’t risk losing them to another company for the sake of a few extra thousand a year. Top talent is worth the extra cost and being paid a bit more can stop people leaving.