Paulina Niemira – IT Talent Sourcer with 2 years of experience in the IT industry. Currently focuses on sourcing the best candidates and actively recruiting from various areas of expertise. In her daily work she makes it a priority to match projects to candidates’ expectations while ensuring a professional and friendly recruitment process.
In the academic year 2022/2023, more than 44,000 people enrolled in IT programmes. It is practically the most popular field of study, with record numbers of students compared to previous years. It is, however, hardly surprising that so many people are pursuing technology-related degrees, as IT is among the best-paid industries. The sector stands for innovation, continuous development of services, implementation of socially necessary projects and, above all, constant change. So how do you look for a job in IT to be part of this growth yourself?
As estimated by SoDA, i.e. Software Development Association Poland, we are short of up to 250–300 thousand programmers in Poland. In this respect we rank sixth in Europe, with the situation looking better in the Netherlands, Spain, Italy, France, and Germany. When you consider the percentage of IT specialists in the total labour force, Poland does not look good compared to other EU Member States.
Meanwhile, according to the Pracuj.pl website, the top 5 most sought-after job profiles in recent times were sales, IT, manual labour, finance and economics, and engineering. The total number of job offers related to these industries posted on the site reached 454,000 in the first half of 2023.
To quote the summary of a Gartner report on trends and developments predicted for 2024:
“Global IT spending is estimated to reach USD 5.1 trillion in 2024, an increase of 8% over 2023. (…) Although generative artificial intelligence (GenAI) has not yet had a significant impact on IT spending, investments in AI generally support overall IT spending growth.”
Goldman Sachs – a global investment banking company – predicts that investment in AI could reach up to USD 200 billion by 2025, and this includes not only expenditure directly related to technology, but also hardware and human capital.
So what does all this mean? Many changes are in store for the IT industry. Corporate spending on cybersecurity alone will increase, according to Gartner. In fact, 80% of CIOs expect this to happen. In addition, Gartner expects double-digit growth in spending on these activities throughout 2024.
According to some experts, the shortage of cybersecurity professionals in Poland could be as high as 18,000 to 20,000 people. This means that these jobs are worth considering. Cybersecurity training is not as time-consuming as it may seem and there are many courses and certification programmes available that can help you get started.
Big Data, AI, machine learning, digitalisation, as well as cybersecurity, project management and software programming in the most popular languages are skills that will certainly be essential in the future. Why? Businesses and organisations around the world must constantly adapt to changing legislations. This forces them to make frequent changes to their operations and product lifecycles, to audit and to think creatively about the future of the organisation. Many of these areas require the assistance of professionals to implement basic privacy or security solutions, as well as regular support from testers.
There are also constant changes in state administration, military and police structures, health care and culture. This is worth considering when looking for a job in new technologies. In Poland, 5,000 IT professionals in central institutions receive a bonus on their salaries, and for the past two years there has been a special fund for cybersecurity personnel.
According to Goldman Sachs, generative artificial intelligence has enormous economic potential. If widely adopted, it could boost global labour productivity by more than 1 percentage point per year within a decade.
And according to a Public First report on digitalisation and cloud usage in Poland commissioned by AWS, achieving the goals of the Digital Decade could unlock PLN 491 billion in economic value. This represents 21% of the current Polish economy. These are important areas that will require the work and commitment of IT professionals.
A good CV, portfolio and some preparation for the recruitment process are essential. Remember that your interview with the HR department or your potential manager will include a general conversation as well as a practical component. The latter may involve completing tasks and taking competency tests. The interview itself can consist of several stages and will cover different aspects of your experience, education, but also your vision of work or your habits.
It is HR’s responsibility to check the candidate’s credentials, manage the offer, feedback and onboarding, and to look after the candidate and, in the case of companies like ITDS, the client throughout the relationship.
The process of looking for a job in IT may differ depending on whether or not you have a degree in the field. In the first case, the search may be easier as your CV is likely to attract more interest from recruiters. Of course, it is up to you to decide which employers and projects you are willing to consider and why.
It is a good idea to monitor the IT sector closely, meet inspiring people (for instance online) and attend key industry events. Knowing the stories of people who, like you, started out in IT will make it easier for you at the beginning. Once you have identified the career paths that you want to pursue, take action. If you are applying for specific roles, be prepared for a longer process. There are many candidates for junior positions at the moment. It pays to be patient and systematic if you want to eventually land your dream job.
Are you starting to look for an IT job because you have recently changed industry or are in training? Keep in mind that each interview you have will give you more experience and confidence. So apply as early as possible to increase your chances.
It is a good idea to go through a series of recruitment processes, building up your knowledge and skills after each one, and take regular self-assessment tests. Soft skills are becoming increasingly important in the IT sector, including work organisation, communication skills, critical thinking and previous experience.
Remember that you can always seek out a mentor, find support in a community of professionals, attend industry events and continue your professional development to keep up to date.
Don’t just look for IT jobs on recruitment websites. Check out social media, employer websites, job fairs and industry events. You can also take advantage of what we have to offer. We are a leader in the outsourcing of IT engineers. ITDS is looking for the right people to join teams working on exciting and evolving projects for our clients across a range of industries. Find out what we can do for you!