Addressing North America’s Growing Software Talent Shortage

North America’s Software Talent Shortage

Software Talent Shortage

With the exponential rise in computing capabilities over the past decade, businesses in every industry have been compelled to invest in digital technologies for fear of being left behind by more advanced competitors. But despite these multi-million-dollar outlays, many organizations still lack the necessary skills to leverage their IT investments to the fullest. It isn’t for lack of trying. Recent research from The App Association shows that the current software talent shortage stands at 220,000 jobs. At current levels of employment and labor supply, it would take around eight years to resolve this pressing deficit.

These problems have only been exasperated by the rapid influx of tech startups across the country. When you seek out top-tier tech talent you’re not just competing with established companies in San Francisco and New York, you’re dealing with a range of new ventures coming out of new hotspots like Colorado, Nebraska, and Huntsville Alabama.

Why Businesses are Struggling to Solve the Software Talent Shortage

When asked to identify their top challenges in resolving this shortage of tech talent, US recruiters indicate the following difficulties.

  • Applicants lack the necessary experience to take over key positions.
  • There has been a persistent US software skills shortage over the past decade.
  • Top-tier applicants are demanding salaries that are far above the market average. A recent Forrester survey reveals that many organizations that fail to address their digital talent shortages now may end up paying 20% over market rate once suitable candidates are identified.
  • Even candidates who do have the necessary technical competencies lack the communication skills to integrate into existing teams.
  • Many candidates have no formal background in software development or engineering.

The Most In-Demand Tech Talent

software developer shortage US

UX Specialists

In the post-Apple world, customer satisfaction has become the primary concern for any digitally focused business. Experienced designers leverage a broad range of competencies in software development, marketing, and data analysis to create high-performance user experiences that provide intuitive functionality and excellent design across mobile and web applications.

Product Owners

With the diversity of digital products on offer, the role of project managers has become increasingly specialized. Modern organizations require focused project management competencies that can deliver on KPIs for specific product rollouts.
A product owner must be able to define the functionalities and features of a new product based on market research. These critical elements must then be communicated to the product development team, and each individual should be made aware of their particular responsibilities. All tasks must be optimized to deliver maximum ROI, and once the product has been launched the product owner is responsible for ensuring that the finished version is compatible with user expectations.

Full-Stack Architects

In an increasingly complex IT landscape, there is a clear shortage of tech talent that understands development and programming for different software systems. A full stack architect brings software engineering experience in multiple programming languages as well as working knowledge of different technological components from mobile and web interfaces to databases and third-party software applications. These employees must also be able to use their expertise to help develop tailored solutions that suit the business’s specific technological vision.

Machine Learning Specialists

Today, almost every organizational function generates a wealth of real-time data that can be used to understand customers, correct inefficient processes, and respond to changing market trends. But in order to extract these insights, you need to have systems in place that can process and analyze these vast volumes of information in an efficient manner. Machine learning specialists employ a wide variety of programming languages to develop algorithms that allow computers to perform data analysis in a logically consistent manner.


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