According to a recent Computer Weekly IT salary survey, about 54 percent of respondents reported getting an increment while 35 percent were given a bonus in 2019. About one in ten tech workers enjoyed a bigger renumeration package that included stock option, while just 3 percent took a pay cut.

It comes as little surprise that Singapore, as a mature market with relatively high employment costs, was the leading paymaster in the SEA region. Businesses operating out of the city-state tends to offer IT executives with 6 to 10 years of experience around S$66,406 in 2019, about three times more than what their peers in the region were making.

IT and tech has become one of the most in-demand skills in the global job market in recent years. Development of new tech such as AI, IoT, and other such innovations has resulted in an incredibly tight IT employment market. Currently, about 4 in 10 IT professionals are open to new opportunities even though they are not actively looking for a new job. Their main reason for doing this is to achieve a greater work-life balance and improve their skills.

Although much of their work can be done remotely, most IT professionals appear to only work from home on a few occasions, even though work-life balance was cited as one of the more important perks influencing job choice among respondents. It analysts in particular appear to work home more regularly, with 4 in 10 reporting that they do so once a week.

Just like their counterparts in Australia and New Zealand, there is some fear lingering among SEA IT professionals that they may lose their jobs to automation and AI. More than half replied that they were preparing for automation’s potential usurpation by expanding their talents and upskilling themselves.

In terms of skills gaps, the respondents cited data analytics, security and cloud computing as areas where talent is lacking. More organisations are also looking to fill positions in project management and software architecture over the next 12 months.

According to a report by Google, Singapore state investment company Temasek Holdings and management consultancy Bain & Company, ASEAN’s rapidly expanding digital economy grew 39 percent to hit the US$100 billion mark for the first time in 2019, increasing further the demand for IT talent across the region.

Recent trends suggests that the region’s digital economy is expected to grow twice as fast outside metropolitan and heavily urbanised areas, supporting new jobs and opportunities while increasing the need for investments to expand internet access to underserved regions.

Unfortunately, the main issue of a shortage in desired IT and tech talent is one that is unlikely to be solved anytime soon. Businesses and organisations throughout the globe are resorting to training and upskilling of current talent in order to fill the gaps in highly desired roles that are created in the digital economy.


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