New IT Salary Snapshot and IT Jobs Market Update

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Market Update

I was driving to work recently and was flicking across radio stations, when an ad came on from a construction company advertising for a range of blue-collar workers – multiple roles, multiple locations, immediate start!!! I’ve never heard a job ad on the radio before. Then the next ad came on, for a home appliances company, not advertising for the appliances but advertising for Installers. Again, immediate start, multiple roles, multiple locations. Then the DJs came on and read out the first recruitment advertisement again.

This started me thinking about the recruitment challenges these companies must be facing if they’ve decided their best remaining option to attract staff is radio ads. I assume they’ve tried to directly source through job boards, used agencies and head hunted. The scale of their challenge must be enormous.

I think the issues attracting staff in aged care, health, technology, and hospitality have been well documented, but it appears the talent shortage is now affecting all sectors. This was backed up by the latest unemployment figures. I thought I’d stopped being shocked by employment data, but the latest ABS unemployment figures are quite startling. From November to December, the number of unemployed people in Australia dropped from 636,000 to 574,000 – that’s a drop of 9.8% in a MONTH!! In the same period, underemployment dropped from 7.5% to 6.6%. By my rough maths, that’s a 12% decrease – in a MONTH!!!.

When the Prime Minister addressed the National Press Club and predicted that the unemployment rate would fall into the 3s (between 3% and 4%), I thought this was just pre-election bluster, however, the Reserve Bank is forecasting unemployment of 3.75% until the end of next year which is a significant deterioration of already poor hiring conditions (though they did forecast unemployment of 6% in 2021, so…).

On the upside, we have finally seen a few newly arrived skilled immigrants in the last month. However, my team estimates we’re seeing less than 5% of pre-Covid numbers. We believe this will increase relatively quickly but it will be a long time before this starts to have a meaningful impact on the talent imbalance and even longer before we get back to 2019 levels. We believe that the Fortress Australia mentality of 2020 and 2021 has created hesitation in the minds of many potential immigrants and this will affect the inflow of talent in the short to medium term.

Many employers seem to be making some effort to meet the market however parity issues limit their flexibility. The most successful employers are attempting to acknowledge and manage risk in the hiring process as opposed to minimising it, allowing jobs to get filled and candidates to gain opportunities more quickly than they have previously.

Salary Snapshot

Since our last update 6 months ago, we’ve seen strong salary rises in high skilled technical roles but smaller rises in low to mid-level roles. The data is based on our team members’ daily discussions with candidates and employers and details real world IT rates and salaries across a broad section of sectors.

Click here to see Balance’s latest Salary Snapshot.

Refer a Friend!


We’re launching a best-of-breed referral scheme.

At Balance, we recently reviewed the data on where we source our candidates. Head hunting and our database are now clearly No.1 and No. 2. SEEK’s effectiveness for us has dropped by almost 70% over the course of the pandemic. (And its price increased by 150%!!!)

Today, in response to market conditions, we’re launching a referral scheme. Every Ad on our website now has 2 buttons, one for Apply and one for Refer a Friend. Every role has a referral reward, in most cases $1000* (Terms and conditions apply).

This will be promoted via a comprehensive email marketing campaign, reaching thousands of candidates a week with carefully targeted “Hot Jobs”…. With the option to apply or Refer and Earn.

With almost 250,000 candidates on our database and our Consultants having an average of over 20 years of recruitment experience, we believe that 2022 will be the year that networking become the key sourcing avenue.

We would love you to visit our jobs page, we would be delighted to pay you $1000 for a successful referral.