4 Key Candidate Market Trends in 2022: Software Engineering

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Software Engineering trends have evolved significantly over recent years – but how will the market develop further in the months ahead?

Whilst it’s vital for businesses to monitor trends, it’s also imperative for candidates to understand where the market is headed. Ben Litvinoff, Business Director at Robert Walters, discusses the trends he expects to see in 2022:

Digitalisation will continue

Throughout Covid-19, businesses began revolutionising how they go to market, whether that be becoming ‘online only’ or an ‘online first’ business. For many, last year was about diversifying into more Software as a Service (SaaS) Solutions or using the time to transfer data to the cloud.

These big drivers a will sustain hiring in 2022, with organisations focusing on digitalising all processes and acquiring the right tech to support this. The high level of interest to hire within engineering to allow for this will continue, with a demand for DevOps engineers that have the skills to deliver agile frameworks particularly in demand. 

Engineering remains the most candidate short area within technology 

Aside from DevOps, we’re seeing an increase in vacancies across all areas within Software Engineering. Nothing is really expected to be more prominent as such, and even before Covid we’ve always been on the lookout for new Engineering candidates. We are however seeing an increase in the amount of Back-end engineering roles; Backend languages such as Golang, Node.js, Typescript and Python remain popular languages in the tech start-up world (with London being the main location for Golang talents).  We’ve seen a 31% growth in Golang talent in the past 12 months in the UK, with a 20% talent growth for Node.js and 22% for Python.

There’s also been a 40% talent growth for Typescript, which can be used in backend and frontend roles. Businesses are on the search for more architects to work with these in-demand languages, with the ability to generate fresh and complex ideas.

Engineering is the most talent-short area of any sector when it comes to top-talent. It’s a business vertical where there is an extremely limited amount of flexibility - you can’t hire someone at an experience level to learn like you can in other areas, you need candidates who can just get on and do the job. These roles are very niche, meaning there are far less candidate options, now more than ever. 

Cloud adoption will grow

The pace of digital transformation has accelerated for many businesses during the pandemic, in a rush to ensure processes are future proofed. Cloud-based services provide businesses with an additional element of security and the turbulence of the last few years has made people revaluate their data hosting processes. Business owners are increasingly opting to migrate to the cloud – it not only streamlines overall processes but is also more cost effective.

Businesses will look to strengthen their cloud-based strategies in 2022 to stay resilient to any further unexpected challenges. They will be looking for candidates with skills in this area – particularly those who are ready to deliver their research and experience-backed recommendations. 

Salary increases will stabilise

We’ve seen a drastic increase in salaries over the last 12-18 months, but we’re seeing these numbers begin to level out. Although a slight increase is expected in 2022, I expect this won’t be as aggressive as we’ve seen over the past year. For those on the lookout for a new role, now would be a suitable time to assess your salary against those being advertised, as there may still be a few businesses searching for top-talent and paying more for it too.

Once the market has stabilised, you won’t be finding significant salary increases like we’ve seen. In the long-term, employers are likely going to be focusing more on what they offer aside from the salary – for example, flexible working, stronger messages around their value points and a collaborative and positive working culture.

Looking for your next move in software engineering and want to know what you should be expecting? Discover your earning potential across the UK with the Robert Walters Salary Calculator.

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