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10 hottest tech skills for 2016

Mary K. Pratt | Dec. 8, 2015
Gunning for a banner year in IT? Make sure you have these skills in your toolbox.

Jeff Remis, a manager at IT staffing and recruiting firm Addison Group, says demand for IT professionals with these skills is strong, particularly in healthcare, insurance, financial services and retail -- industries where the use of BI and analytics is more mature than it is in other sectors.

Remis says hiring managers are looking for recruits with technical expertise, but they also want BI specialists who understand the business and the industry. Such requirements put a premium on good candidates.

6. Help desk/technical support

* 30% of respondents with hiring plans said they will be seeking people with this skill in the next 12 months.

* Last year's ranking: No. 3

Brosius says hiring Tier 1 and Tier 2 support people is a priority at HRHCare, where organizational growth has resulted in burgeoning technology needs. But he acknowledges that competition for talent is tough, so he says he looks for potential as much as experience when evaluating job applicants.

"My recruiting model is to find prospects, people recently graduated from college. I feel they have a well-rounded education, and it gives me confidence that they can communicate and have good customer service skills," he says. "We can educate them on the tech skills, but you can't teach personality."

7. Database administration

* 25% of respondents with hiring plans said they will be seeking people with this skill in the next 12 months.

* Last year's ranking: No. 6

Demand for database administrators remains high thanks to the ever-increasing interest in big data, BI and analytics.

In its 2016 Salary Guide, Robert Half Technology lists database administrator as one of the most in-demand specialties, noting that "more companies are using big data analytics to help inform business decisions and are relying on specialized personnel for managing and interpreting raw data."

The guide also states that salaries for database administration positions will rise by 4% to 9% next year, with pay ranging from about $100,000 to $200,000.

Recruiters say employers want people with extensive backgrounds in database administration and a deep understanding of data reporting tools and technologies such as Oracle, SQL, DB2 and Hadoop.

8. Security/compliance/governance

* 25% of respondents with hiring plans said they will be seeking people with this skill in the next 12 months.

* Last year's ranking: No. 4

Computerworld IT Forecast 2016: Security Salaries [factoid]

Although security expertise slipped from No. 4 on last year's list of the 10 hottest tech skills, make no mistake about its importance: Security professionals are in demand and can command high salaries. Exactly 50% of the IT professionals who participated in our Forecast 2016 survey said they plan to increase spending on security technologies in the next 12 months, and security was No. 2 among the most important IT projects that respondents have underway.

 

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