The competition continues for today's most popular technology jobs. One thing you don’t have to sweat though, is guessing what employers are looking for in top candidates. Kimberly Bohinick, Kforce Market Director, identifies some of the hottest tech jobs of 2011 and what skills are needed for each.
Desktop Support/Help Desk Analyst
Why it’s hot: As companies begin to recover from the recession, computer upgrades and hardware refreshes are becoming critical. For almost any business investing in technology, desktop support staff, or help desk analysts, may be required to provide technical and customer service skills to assist in these projects. As employers search for these specialists, professionals in demand will likely include those who have supported a large number of end users during a project roll-out. These companies may also look for details on the types of operating systems the professional has experience with and additional hardware skills.
Experience: Hardware certifications such as A+ preferred, experience with current technology and project roll outs
Salary Range: $32,000 - $64,000
Why it's hot: As technology driven organizations launch new projects in 2011, there is increased potential for new coding and development activities. For global organizations, Java developers will likely be in high demand. Additionally, organizations using Microsoft based applications will likely need .NET developers to step into consulting opportunities.
Experience: 5+ years experience coding methodologies and applications
Salary Range: $65,000 - $114,000
Mobile Application Developer
Why it's hot: It's no secret that smartphones and tablet computers have gained popularity within the past few years. Many organizations on the cutting edge of technology want their products or service available online through a mobile application. Professionals with 1-2 years of experience in this field will likely be very marketable candidates. However, since this position has just emerged in the past few years, more employers are considering professionals with coding and other application development experience for these positions. Bohinick says employers will likely want to know what piece of the development stage the professional had experience in, and how that may be able to translate to mobile application development.
Experience: Coding or application development experience
Salary Range: $110,000 - $200,000
Why it's hot: As budgets decreased during the recession, so did the number of projects. In 2011, as organizations reinstate funding for various projects, project managers are now back in demand. Depending on the size and scope of the project, large organizations and project management offices will be looking for professionals with experience in discipline methodologies and structured projects.
Experience: Bachelor's degree, PMP certification preferred
Salary Range: $80,000 - $100,000
Quality Assurance Testers
Why it's hot: In the past, organizations outsourced quality assurance testers, likely due to cost-cutting measures. However, Bohinick says more organizations are now realizing that it’s important to have QA resources onshore. These professionals may be expected to have strong scripting skills with experience in writing and executing test scripts and potentially automated testing tools, as well as up-to-date knowledge on current technologies being used within that particular organization.
Experience: 1+ year experience testing, Certifications on automated tools such as QTP
Salary Range: $50,000 - $65,000
Reporting/Data Warehouse Developers
Why it's hot: Staffing specialists have recently seen a growing need from public firms and healthcare organizations to hire professionals who have the ability to gather and report data for business intelligence. From extracting data to compiling a report of the findings, organizations may look for candidates with experience in SQL development or database administration. Bohinick suggest that those professional applying for positions in this area list their specific experience with Microsoft data warehousing applications (SSRS/SSAS/SSIS).
Experience: 2+ years experience with reporting/data warehousing, SQL development
Salary Range: $85,000 - $100,000+
SharePoint Application Developer
Why it's hot: Gone are the days of paper files and rolodexes. SharePoint now offers a way for businesses to manage and organize content and documents, and Bohinick says professionals who can deliver this service, are typically placed in a position in less than a week. Hiring managers will likely look for professionals who have worked in a large environment and have experience with custom development or developing projects from scratch.
Experience: 5+ years working as a developer, C#/.NET development experience
Salary Range: $95,000 - $115,000
Kimberly Bohinick is a market director for Kforce Inc. in Tampa, FL. She oversees a team of staffing specialists who attract and recruit top talent for Technology and Finance and Accounting organizations in the Tampa Bay area.