The Australian tech sector is experiencing a meteoric boom right now, and with good reason. The pandemic drove up demand for IT technology, and Australia was well poised to handle that demand.
Australians are avid technology users. In fact, the country is ranked first in tech readiness. It's also a springboard to the APAC region. So, it's no surprise that when IT demand rose, venture capitalists and entrepreneurs turned to Australia.
The problem? There aren't enough qualified tech workers in the country to support demand. As a result, Australian tech businesses are experiencing a tech talent shortage that experts expect will only worsen – and when it does, the risks to Australian companies and the economy are high.
Here's everything you need to know about the tech talent shortage in Australia and what you can do about it to protect your company.
The Australian tech talent shortage: how we got here
Before we get into the business risks associated with the tech talent shortage, let's define what a "tech talent shortage" actually is. A tech talent shortage occurs when there aren't enough people with the necessary skills to fill available positions in the tech industry.
This can be due to several factors, including:
- A lack of qualified candidates
- The unwillingness of candidates to relocate
- A shortage of visas for skilled workers
- Economic factors such as low unemployment rates
The tech talent shortage is a global problem, but it's particularly acute in Australia. That's because the Australian tech sector is growing at twice the rate of the overall economy. In fact, Australia has one of the highest concentrations of tech jobs per capita in the world, but only a small percentage of the population has the necessary skills to fill these positions
The reality is that there's a lack of qualified candidates in Australia with the necessary skills to fill the available positions in the tech industry. The Tech Council of Australia has forecast Australia will need 1 million people in tech jobs by 2025, leaving a shortfall of around 260,000 skilled workers.
The result of this tech talent shortage is that the currently buoyant Australian tech sector will gradually fall behind, ultimately preventing Australia from becoming a top 10 digital economy by 2030
The Australian tech talent shortage presents significant risks
Aside from the immediate impact of not having enough employees, there are several other business risks associated with the tech talent shortage, including:
- Difficulty attracting and retaining top talent - As the shortage of skilled workers intensifies, businesses will find it increasingly difficult to attract and retain top talent. This could lead to a brain drain as talented workers leave Australia in search of better opportunities elsewhere.
- Increased competition for talent - As the number of job openings outpaces the number of available workers, businesses will find themselves competing against each other for a limited talent pool. This could lead to higher wages and additional costs associated with recruiting and retaining employees.
- Difficulty keeping up with technology - As businesses struggle to find employees with the necessary skills, they may fall behind in adopting new technologies, putting them at a competitive disadvantage and making it difficult to keep pace with the changes in the marketplace.
- Increased costs associated with recruiting and training employees - The talent shortage could lead to increased expenses related to recruiting and training employees. As a result, businesses may have to invest more in employee development and training programs and offer higher salaries to attract and retain workers. This could strain business budgets and result in higher prices for goods and services.
- The ripple effect - The tech talent shortage could also have a ripple effect on other industries that rely on technology, such as manufacturing and healthcare. If businesses can't find the workers they need to develop and maintain their technology, it could slow down innovation and growth in these industries.
- A decline in innovation - The talent shortage could lead to a decline in innovation if businesses cannot attract and retain the best and brightest minds in the tech industry. This could stifle the development of new products and services and limit the growth of businesses.
- Reduced competitiveness in the global marketplace - The talent shortage could make it difficult for businesses to compete in the global marketplace.
The talent shortage is a real and pressing issue for businesses in Australia. Given the importance of the tech sector to the Australian economy, the talent shortage could have far-reaching implications, so companies need to start taking action to mitigate these risks.
How to address the risks associated with the talent shortage
Addressing the tech talent shortage will require a concerted effort from businesses, governments and educational institutions to ensure that Australia remains an attractive destination for tech talent. However, these solutions will inevitably take time that Australian business owners don't have.
In the meantime, there's a way to mitigate these risks, fill open positions and take advantage of the tech boom. The answer? Leverage the global talent pool.
Utilising global talent is a terrific way to bridge the gap. Via the power of remote working, Australian business owners can get the skills they need without paying a fortune or sacrificing quality work. Here's how.
- The Philippines
These countries have thriving tech industries and can provide high-quality talent at a lower employment cost than Australia.
Be proactive: close the tech talent gap with the help of Outstaffer.com
The tech talent shortage in Australia will only become more pronounced in the coming years, and businesses that don't adapt now will likely find themselves at a disadvantage.
Hiring remote tech workers is one way to mitigate the risk posed by the talent shortage. By using the vast pool of global talent, businesses can ensure they have the staff they need to stay competitive.
As an Employer of Record, Outstaffer.com handles everything from compliance, payroll, taxes, HR admin, IT, logistics and more, making it easy for you to focus on your business goals. We also enable your remote employees to work with our #WorkFromAnywhere technology and 24/7 support.
If you're looking to hire global tech talent, contact Outstaffer.com today, and let us connect you with top-quality talent from around the world.