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Competition for tech talent is fierce. Is the trend temporary?

Jennifer Van Grove, The San Diego Union-Tribune on

Published in Science & Technology News

NO: As new technologies permeate all aspects of our lives, the need for advanced workers accelerates. While technical college graduates and training programs increase, they continue to be outpaced by global demand. As such, in-demand workers will command additional salary and benefits. Regions that efficiently produce or attract highly trained workers will fare best in the coming decades.

James Hamilton, UC San Diego

NO: The trend favoring tech-savvy workers has been very clear for some time. What often happens during a recession is that there is a sharp step that we later recognize as part of a longer-term trend. This could be a good time for some people to consider a career move. For young people, the advice is always to find something you like to do that fills an important need, and get the skills to do it well.

Chris Van Gorder, Scripps Health

YES: Fortunately, the trend toward more virtual work because of COVID showed just how manageable this arrangement is. It makes sense that more people in tech want to work remotely; it's a field that's highly conducive to that. So, if tech employers are willing to let potential employees work from home, that could make recruitment easier. Here at Scripps, we now have employees working from several states.

Norm Miller, University of San Diego

 

YES: All "fierce" trends are temporary. We have had an engineering shortage for years but the current tech surge is due, in part, to strong investor appetites for startups and all things tech including a wave of machine-learning apps, using new sources of data for real-time decision making. Some will be wildly successful. Most will not. We are in 1998 again with a dot.com bomb looming and yet until that bust occurs, tech demand will be fierce.

Jamie Moraga, IntelliSolutions

YES: It's difficult to recruit and retain high-skilled tech talent right now due to increased demand. Workers can be more selective, or job hop to better offers as more companies around the country (or around the globe) are offering remote work opportunities, higher salaries and benefits, and more "incentives," which can put local or small businesses at a disadvantage. Like anything, this will not always be the case. The pendulum will eventually swing back as the market adjusts, more qualified workers decide to re-enter the job market, or companies decide to shift back to the office and away from remote work.

David Ely, San Diego State University

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