|By Brendhan Malone,
Vice-President, Central Canada at Eagle
COVID-19 has spared almost no business and the IT job market in Toronto is no exception. While it has certainly been spared some of the devastating consequences of other industries like the airline, hotel, and hospitalities, it has not been without pain and hardship of its own.
We’ve seen a mix of reactions and strategies from organizations to get through this turmoil, and it all depends on the company’s individual circumstances. While some are able and willing to use this time to accelerate their digital transformation and IT systems others are simply not financially able to, depending on where IT fits within their business and the impact of COVID.
Overall, though, there are technology employment trends that are standing out, many of which are the result of COVID-19 adjustment strategies. For example:
- There is an increased demand for security resources as companies deal with the challenges associated with a remote workforce and the security challenges associated with keeping data secure from so many remote locations.
- The demand for resources skilled in data analysis and analytics is expected to continue, if not rise. Companies are competing to better understand how their customers operate in this reality. Data positions are in high demand and this looks to continue.
- Web-based projects continue to be on the rise, with UI and UX developers being sought after throughout all industries.
As stated, the outlook for IT jobs in Toronto is rosier than many other industries and locations. Jobs grew in Ontario in June and July and IT far outpaced the median here. Specifically in Toronto, employers are continuing to recognize the strength of talent that’s out there. Once again, CBRE ranked Toronto the 4th best city in North America for tech talent in 2020, citing an overall 5-year employment growth of 36.5% and 5-year wage growth of 11.2%.
Part of the city’s success is due to the thousands of immigrant tech workers choosing to come here rather than the US, and Toronto is benefitting from that trend. Policy south of the border is encouraging more immigrants from Silicon Valley to make the Great White North their home, and leading companies are following the talent, choosing Toronto for their headquarters.
As we all band together to get through these tough times, the future remains bright in the Toronto IT market. The expectation that organizations will continue to invest in IT in Toronto means the demand for top talent will remain high. That said, competition for contracts is also strong, so if you’re an IT contractor navigating your way through tough times, my advice is to continue expanding your networks and talking to recruiters. Companies who are hiring are doing so quickly, meaning the contractors who are top of mind and keeping their skills fresh are the ones most likely to get the gig.