IT architects, business analysts are in short supply: survey

About 43 per cent of Australian CIOs said they are suffering from a skills shortage in enterprise architecture and business analysis

With transformation high on the list of priorities for CIOs this year, skills in deploying enterprise-wide architecture and driving business efficiency are in high demand but in short supply, according to Harvey Nash’s 2013 global CIO survey.

Harvey Nash surveyed 2029 CIOs from 10 countries – 210 in Australia – and found about 43 per cent in Australia said they are suffering from a skills shortage in enterprise architecture and business analysis. Project management came second on the list of skills in short supply at 25 per cent, followed by technical architecture at 25.7 per cent and change management.

“Australian organisations are working on their architecture and mainframes as part of a wider transformation, which includes readying their systems for mobile solutions,” said Bridget Gray, managing director of Harvey Nash Australia.

“More demands are being placed on a business to be as efficient and profitable as possible and business analysis enables this to happen.

“As Australia is just cresting the wave of enterprise-wide technology normalisations - organisations with a 50-year plus history tend to have recently established these teams - there is typically a larger talent pool in the USA and Europe, where these projects and programs have been going on for some time.”

The survey found the skills that are in most short supply across the globe are in mobile, big data and social media. Gray said that even though these skills were not cited as the largest skills shortage in Australia, she has seen a rapid rise in demand for these skills since last year.

“In 2012, only 15 per cent of CIOs cited social media as a skills shortage, in 2013 it is 22.9 per cent. In 2012, no CIO cited big data as a skills shortage, in 2013, 18.6 per cent of CIOs cited big data as a skills shortage. The demand for these skills is rising at an exponential rate.”

The survey also found 84 per cent of Australian CIOs are concerned about retaining their best talent. Gray said with pay increases and bonuses not always feasible, CIOs need to entrench their staff into their organisations by allowing them to be involved in projects and initiatives that go beyond their typical role.

“Salary is rarely the only reason why a candidate leaves a role, and most professionals who enjoy their roles and feel valued by their company and manager, will not move roles to secure an increase in remuneration,” she said.