Salary rates traded for skills training

IT professionals are generally happy to trade part of their salary and rate of pay to acquire skills, according to a new survey.

The national survey of 1000 IT professionals found 42 percent would be happy to take a less attractive position in order to acquire new skills, 55 percent preferred to learn in their own time at their own expense and 3 percent did not believe they actually need new skills.

Candle recruitment, which undertook the survey, has recommended incorporating training (where appropriate) into permanent packages while partnering with vendors to fill skills gaps in the short term.

But over the long term Candle suggests companies invest in training for permanent and long-term contractors and make use of casual staff while permanent employees are training.

The recruiter confirmed that emerging skill shortages and proposals for increased immigration to meet such shortages is becoming common. As a result, long-term training strategies need to be developed and implemented.

Candle national manager Trevor Taylor said such training is crucial to local industry and is more beneficial than importing labour to meet demand.

"Rather than recruit from overseas to fill skills gaps in the short term, especially with reports of unemployment for local ICT professionals within certain skilled areas, we need to be looking at more flexible and sustainable approaches," Taylor said.

"Investment in new technologies and relevant training is crucial to maintain the competitiveness and profitability of the Australian ICT industry."

Recommendations for ICT workers include being prepared to consider lower rates or salary or invest in your own training, work in vendor technology environments for a period of one to two years to keep skills marketable, commit to projects for the duration to gain project lifecycle experience and impress future employers, as well as being realistic when it comes to roles and remuneration.

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