Top 5 trends affecting technology professionals in 2016

Technology will be a major driver in the UK’s effort to rebuild productivity and boost growth, which in turn will create significant new opportunities for technology professionals.

  • Highest professional salary increases are being awarded to IT
  • Digital transformation skills and experience in demand
  • Increased prevalence of cyber-attacks seeing growing demand for IT security skillsets
  • Technology will be a key factor in rebuilding UK productivity
  • Attracting and retaining top IT performers remains high on the CIO agenda

London, 25 February 2016: Technology will be a major driver in the UK’s effort to rebuild productivity and boost growth, which in turn will create significant new opportunities for technology professionals, according to Robert Half Technology.

1. Top professional roles receiving pay rises will be in IT

Three of the top five roles in Robert Half Salary Guide are related to technology and are predicted to attract the highest salary rises this year. They include salaries1 for mobile applications developers, predicted to rise by 7.4% to between £32,500 and £61,500; web developers (rising 7.3% to between £36,500 and £55,000) and information security managers (rising 6.6% to between £63,250 and £97,000).  Salaries are on the rise and negotiations are becoming commonplace.

2. Digital transformation opening doors for IT professionals

The growing demand for businesses to be offering anytime anywhere access seeing an increase in digital transformation projects across all sectors. Gartner’s predictions for 10 Strategic Technology Trends for 20162, which highlighted the emergence of the ‘digital mesh’, an expanding set of endpoints including mobile devices, wearable, consumer and home electronic devices, automotive devices and sensors.  IT professionals who can help organisations understand the potential of mobile connectivity and innovation will be in huge demand and skills are already in short supply.

3. Requirements for IT security skills will continue to evolve

Gartner also pointed to the requirement for an ‘adaptive security architecture’ which will mean less reliance on perimeter defence and rule-based security and more on application self-protection, as well as user and entity behaviour analytics.  Keeping up to date with these changes in approach will be vital if companies are to fight off the ever-increasing prevalence of cyber-attacks.

4. Technology is key to delivering UK productivity

Key drivers behind the substantial salary rises predicted for technology roles of 7% plus include the need to introduce innovation to drive growth and productivity, as well as the burgeoning technology sector itself, which is recognised as a key area to deliver future growth for the UK economy.

5. Finding and keeping talent is top of the agenda for CIOs

According to the 2016 Tech Nation report3 the UK’s digital economy grew 32% faster than the rest of the economy between 2011 and 2014 and already accounts for 1.56 million jobs across the UK. As a result attracting and retaining talented technology professionals will be a key priority for CIOs this year and it will be important to benchmark salary levels and benefits packages.  Recognising that motivation for IT professionals is not always related to salary is also vital: exciting projects, opportunity for innovation, flexible working and new technologies to work with are also plus points.

Neil Owen, Director, Robert Half Technology, said: “Technology is rapidly advancing and has become a fundamental part of customer interactions. Taking into account multiple customer touchpoints and data, while balancing the security risks is resulting in increased demand for professionals with these skillsets.

“We are seeing an uptick in requests for technology professionals with the right skills from organisations looking to innovate to improve productivity and increase market share. We are also aware that there is huge competition for the best people from smart start-ups and SMEs whose business is built on technology. Employers need to act decisively when meeting suitable candidates and offer a competitive salary and benefits package as skilled, talented IT professionals are often sought-after by multiple employers. Enhancing the workplace experience and employer brand will go a long way to ensure they keep their most valuable people.”

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Notes to Editor

1 Salary ranges reflect average starting salaries across the UK

About Robert Half

Robert Half is the world’s first and largest specialised recruitment consultancy and member of the S&P 500. We have once again been named to FORTUNE’s “World’s Most Admired Companies®” list and remains the top-ranked staffing firm (February 2020). Founded in 1948, the company has over 300 offices worldwide providing temporary, interim and permanent recruitment solutions for accounting and finance, financial services, technology, legal and administrative professionals. Robert Half offers workplace and jobseeker resources at and