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10 hottest IT skills for 2015

Mary K. Pratt | Nov. 19, 2014
Programmers and project managers rejoice: Your skills are bankable assets.

Good project managers need a mix of business and technology acumen along with the ability to bridge those two areas, he says. They also need experience in leading teams using specific methodologies, such as agile and waterfall. And Ghanayem specifically needs people who know how to move a traditional waterfall shop to an agile one. Given such intense requirements, he says it's not surprising that demand for project managers is on the rise.

3. Help desk/technical support

"30% of respondents said they plan to hire for this skill in the next 12 months.

"Last year's ranking: No. 2

IT leaders say they still have a growing need for help desk and technical support staffers because ongoing projects expand the list of devices and applications that their departments must support. "Demand for this position is a function of growth," says Andrew C. Jackson, president and co-founder of BravoTech, a technology staffing firm in Dallas, and a member of the SIM Management Council. Jackson notes that the growing number of companies adopting bring-your-own-device programs has also fueled the need for more support professionals, because both the volume and variety of hardware and software within organizations is proliferating.

4. Security/compliance governance

"28% of respondents said they plan to hire for this skill in the next 12 months.

"Last year's ranking: No. 7

Executives and board members are willing to spend more money on security because security breaches are making headlines these days. SIM's research shows that IT departments are beefing up their security ranks; security ranked seventh on the organization's list of most significant IT investments for 2014.

Cynthia Nustad, enterprise vice president and CIO at HMS, an Irving, Texas-based provider of cost containment services to healthcare payers, says organizations like hers face an ever-increasing number of threats. So she's expanding her security team, which has already nearly tripled in size during the past five years. She says she's seeking more specialized security talent; the positions she's filling include one focused on incident management and another focused on threats and vulnerabilities.

"The demand to secure data is paramount, and the people who understand security -- the architects, engineers or subject-matter experts -- are very hard to find," Nustad says.

5. Web development

"28% of respondents said they plan to hire for this skill in the next 12 months.

"Last year's ranking: Not ranked

Matt Leighton, director of recruitment at Mondo, a tech staffing agency, says that Web development expertise is one of the hardest skill sets to find. "The influx of demand has not been met with the talent readily available -- there is a gap in terms of what the companies want to do and the talent that is out there to execute these initiatives," he says.


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