With a new year comes new trends, job opportunities, and chances to grow and improve. In the 2018 Spiceworks IT career outlook survey of over two thousand IT professionals, 32 percent of respondents expect to look for or start a new IT job in 2018. Although many of these professionals are seeking a better salary, 70 percent are also looking to advance their IT skills through a new opportunity.
If you are a technical professional who wants to expand your IT skill set, conducting market research can help you decipher the specific skills companies will be targeting in 2018. Aligning your technical expertise with marketplace demands is one significant way to increase the likelihood you will be hired by a company that genuinely values your experience.
There are two distinct perspectives to consider when assessing the top technology skills of 2018, notably the fastest growing IT skills and the most in-demand IT skills. Each category is equally important but will impact you differently depending upon your career goals. Furthermore, the steps you take to improve your skills will also make a difference in your future IT career path.
The Fastest Growing Technology Skills in 2018
Researchers and economists at Indeed have studied data from the last two years and compiled a list of the fastest growing IT skills. While these IT skills are not necessarily in highest demand, they show the most significant growth both from a jobseeker and employer perspective.
- Amazon Web Services
- Offensive Security Certified Professional
As mentioned, you will not necessarily find an abundant number of jobs for these specific skills, but the fact that they have experienced such a quick growth within the IT marketplace hints that there may be many more jobs for these skill sets in the near future. If you want a challenge and are looking for innovation, these are some of the top IT skills to start learning in 2018.
The Most In-Demand Technology Skills in 2018
Microsoft Partner Gooroo.io is a skills-matching website that performs a monthly analysis of more than 500,000 IT job advertisements to find which skills are in highest demand. These skills will be familiar to most technical professionals because the use of these technologies across every industry and sector has remained strong for many years. They are the building blocks of many companies’ IT infrastructure, websites, applications, and products or services.
- Network Security
- Big Data
As an IT professional, you likely have past experience with some of these languages and technologies. However, since they are in-demand, it is always a good idea to brush up on your skills before searching for a new job. The more competent and knowledgeable you are, the more attractive you will be as a candidate.
How to Prepare for the Top Technology Skills of 2018
These days many developers choose to take online courses. This is an increasingly popular channel for skills development, with many organizations offering free or inexpensive educational resources.
Stack Overflow, a global online developer community, publishes an annual Developer Survey of over 64,000 developers. Interestingly, although more than three quarters of 2017’s survey respondents have a Bachelor’s degree or higher, only 32 percent believe that formal education is necessary for career success. Furthermore, over 90 percent of professional developers are self-taught in some way, regardless of whether or not they have a formal degree.
The following list of websites and organizations are just a few resources that can help you prepare for the top technology skills of 2018.
- MIT OpenCourseWare
- Lynda (also known as LinkedIn Learning)
- Khan Academy
Outside of online courses, you should also explore any local classes, certifications in your field, and online forums that will answer any questions you may have along the way.
Upon successfully completing a course or class, ensure that you are confident enough to apply your new skills in the real world. Consider volunteer opportunities, hobbies, or side projects where you can practice these skills without distracting you from your current job. Finally, add these skills to your resume, let your IT recruiter know you’re ready for new opportunities, and prepare yourself for technical screenings and interviews.
If you are one of the many IT professionals looking for a new job opportunity this year, do not hesitate to reach out to Resource 1. We are committed to the careers and work-life balance of our consultants! In the era of IT labor commoditization, the art of employee and consultant care has become a dying practice; but not at Resource 1! In fact, our dedication to our internal staff and to every consultant is our number one priority. To Resource 1, our consultants are the reason we exist and it shows in every way we interact with our team. If you seek stability in your career, excitement in every project, and the challenge to advance your technical skills, Resource 1 will match you with the right opportunity.