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Australia – ICT contractor demand outpacing permanent recruitment

25 March 2014

The trend for employers to hire ICT contractors rather than permanent employees continues, with the latest report on Australia’s jobs market revealing that the ICT sector has the strongest contract employment outlook of all professions, reports itwire.com.

In its latest quarterly socio-economic report on employer hiring intentions, recruitment company Hudson says that those intentions in the ICT sector to take on more staff are up by +2 percentage points to 29.4%. 

Tim Davis, Director of ICT at Hudson, explained that the Q2 2014 figures for the ICT sector mark the third consecutive quarter that the sector has had the strongest intention to hire contractor staff: “What is really driving demand in IT right now is business transformation projects. Organisations are using innovations in technology to identify ways to reduce costs or increase revenue, which goes a long way towards explaining these results.”

“ICT is now integral to almost all major project considerations that an organisation undertakes. Regardless of whether an initiative originates from marketing, finance or elsewhere within the business, IT will invariably be used to develop capabilities or reduce costs as part of it.”

Mr Davis said this is also the first time in recent years that intention to hire ICT contract staff (29.4%) is higher than intentions to hire permanent ICT employees, which are down by -3.6 percentage points to 25.2%.

According to Mr Davis there are three main factors influencing this result. He said:“Project work is always a primary driver for contractor demand and the continued investment in business transformation projects across the country is one key demand generator for contract IT professionals.” 

“The forthcoming May Federal Budget is also likely to be having an influence on permanent hiring strategies, with organisations utilising contract workers until the Budget delivers greater clarity on where to invest in permanent talent.”

“Organisations are also being more cautious in their hiring procedures, making sure they make the right hire. The decision process for making a hire has lengthened, with relevant commercial and technical experience, and also a good cultural fit, being key criteria,” Mr Davis added.

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