Tech talent will continue to be highly valued in 2018 as modern businesses look to build a workforce capable of dealing with AI, big data and other forms of advances in technology. With employment opportunities in the sector expected to increase significantly during the next five years, IT professionals currently have a chance to learn the skills needed to improve their chances of securing a new, more lucrative position. Being involved in the tech industry can be exciting for logical people and those who looks for high-paying jobs as web developer and software engineer salaries can reach up to a hundred thousand dollars per year.

Artificial intelligence

Artificial intelligence (AI) is already transforming work productivity and business performance, and its true potential will be realized during the next decade as the tech evolves and matures. However, while AI will soon take a more prominent role in business, the field is seriously understaffed. There is also a dearth of CIOs, CTOs and other tech leaders who can manage teams covering various aspects of AI, data science, and automation. That situationpresents an opportunity for contractorswho specialize in this field to become more experienced with AI in 2018 to prepare for a growing demand for computer science specialists and consequentlyto earn more contractor pay.

Data science

Enterprises in a range of sectors and industries are now recognizing the value of using big data to improve every aspect of their businesses. Data scientists are central to this process as they can gather, process and analyze information to glean key insights and inform decision making. Programming skills such as Python and Java are crucial for this role, as are strong analytical and mathematical skills. Companies will be investing heavily in talent acquisition in this field during the next 18-months, which covers other roles such as database developers and data security administrators.

JavaScript

Regarding IT skills, JavaScript and Java will be the most sought after this year according to the latest annual ‘Developer Ecosystem’ report from Stack Overflow. “I think JavaScript frameworks show the most exciting trends and changes over the last couple of years,” the company’s data scientist, Dave Robinson says. “In some technologies and areas of software development, people are building with the same tools they were ten years ago. But with JavaScript frameworks, this is not the case at all. Things change very quickly, and people need to work hard to keep up with them.”

Cloud SaaS

Demand for Amazon Web Services skills has also grown significantly in recent months, which feeds into the desire among modern enterprises to bring in more talent for software-as-a-service and other similar models in the cloud. Virtualization skills in AWS and similar platforms including VMware and Microsoft Hyper-V are important as more businesses adopt public, private and hybrid cloud solutions to drive cost efficiency and scalability. These skills and experience with DevOps will help professionals stand out from the crowd in 2018.

Mobile dev and AR

Mobile application developers have been popular for some time now, and that won’t change this year as brands continue to create apps and experiences to support business goals and objectives. Developers should be fluent in at least several programming languages, with Java, Swift, C++, C# and Python being chief among them. Those with UI and UX design skills will also be able to provide added value to projects. More companies will begin producing applications with augmented reality in mind, so that is an area of expertise to consider.

Programming knowledge, analytics, cybersecurity and anything related to digital transformation will also be in-demand skills this year. Those that are proactive and add new capabilities to their repertoire will be the best placed to secure high paying roles during the next twelve months and beyond.