The demand for IT contractors, freelancers, agency workers and other self-employed experts in the UK is going strong and is likely to stay that way.
At least, that’s what the experts say. IT resource specialists Experis just announced that Britain, when held up to other regions internationally, was one of the best places to find work as an IT contractor last year and that specialised IT workers looking for temporary work are going to be in high demand for 2016 as well.
How well are we talking about here? Well, Experis discovered in their research study that 76 per cent of firms in the UK make use of freelancers or umbrella company contractors for their information technology needs. Yes, you read that correctly – more than three out of every four British firms. This is far and above the international average, Experis reports. Not only that, but last year saw a 10 per cent jump in the number of IT contractor positions on offer in the UK from January to December.
So what’s driving this fantastic demand? Experis is rather convinced that the skills gap is largely working in favour of IT contractors, as the number of firms that need IT specialists keeps growing while the number of available individuals looking for work in the sector remains stagnant. In lieu of letting their own firms falter, these businesses hire on temporary contract workers instead – not only does this result in these companies being able to continue to grow themselves, the amount of money these firms can save by employing an umbrella contractor or freelancer is highly attractive.
So how far ahead of the curve is the UK? The figures are just astonishing if you ask me. The closes to the UK was the United States with 66 per cent. Meanwhile other major regions like Japan and Jermany could barely muster 65 per cent and 40 per cent respectively, though Experis says the firms they surveyed in these countries indicated they’ll be ramping up their hiring this coming year – or at least they want to quite badly.
In other words, well done you if you’re an IT contractor. You’re likely to have an absolutely brilliant year unless something absolutely catastrophic occurs. Maybe a solar flare will hit the Earth and knock out our power grid or something, plunging us into a second Stone Age. Of course that’s a big maybe, so we’re probably not going to suffer such a fantastic and tragic fate.