“There’s been a lot of talk about a talent gap in Australia, but very little on exactly what that talent looks like,” says Alex McCauley, CEO of StartupAUS.
“What skills or roles are really in demand? We wanted to talk to business founders and ask who are you hiring for? Who is hard to find? And then we can cross-reference that with a really big data set in LinkedIn’s job data, and see if those trends continue across Australia and the world.”
What do the 5 most in-demand jobs in tech mean for students?
So, what does this mean for students choosing their tertiary study futures?
“There’s some really big clues here for how you can develop a skill set that is in great demand by the tech industry,” says Alex.
Up-skilling to your advantage
Bernadette Makhlouf, is a product manager at Nabo, one of the 5 most in-demand jobs in tech on the list. She knows first-hand the benefits this skill shortage has had on workers in these areas.
“The demand for a product manager role is definitely on the rise. This means you have greater choice and a better opportunity to find jobs that align with your values or the benefits you seek,” says Bernadette.
If you’re a student seeking out study options, following your passions is always a good idea. However, playing to market conditions could see you in good shape for career longevity.
TAKE THE QUIZ
Coding is the instructions you give to a computer; to design a website, make an app, develop a computer game – whatever it might be. Coders have such a diverse skill-set that they’re in high demand in almost any kind of industry.
If you like programming software, you could be developing a secure fortress for banks or government agencies with cybersecurity. If you’re more into creativity? Try becoming a front end developer and start building websites or apps for clients.
Ally Watson, Code Like A Girl.
Starting her career as a developer, Ally faced first-hand the challenges of being a woman in a male-dominated tech career. But, that didn’t stop her from pursuing her passion.
Ally is co-founder of an educational startup that teaches girls to code through workshops, coding camps, and events at schools. You can find events cropping up in Melbourne, Sydney and Adelaide at the moment.
“[Code is ] like a paintbrush for technology, to create solutions to problems that you really care about.”
“I love that maths is all about solving puzzles. It’s logical by definition and there’s no ambiguity. It just makes sense and my mind finds comfort in how black and white it is.”
2. Data scientist
Data scientists are like translators; they take huge sets of data, whether it’s health records or customer information, and translate that into identified trends or key business decisions.
Big data has seen data scientists become capable of predicting trends in health, like a patient’s likelihood of developing breast cancer in the next ten years, for example. In business, data analysis is responsible for identifying key trends that could expand growth opportunities. Take Instagram shopping for example; a solution created in response to the trend of users exiting the app to make purchases.
Lily Serna, Data analyst at Atlassian.
Lily Serna is a data analyst at Atlassian turned TV presenter for SBS’ ‘Letters and Numbers’.
She’s forged a unique career, helping Atlassian to translate numbers into meaningful business decisions as well as spreading her love of maths through the educational SBS show ‘Letters and Numbers’.
3. Product manager
Product managers are people of many talents. Consider them the overseers of the engineering, sales, marketing and support teams involved in creating a new product.
Whether they’re working for a tech company producing new smart phones, or with Nike to produce slick new sneakers, the product manager ensures the effective implementation of products that meet consumer needs. They’ll be forecasting profits, designing strategies for creation and marketing, and managing the different departments involved in creating the product.
Ganesh Shankar, Product manager at Google.
Google product manager Ganesh Shankar is part of a growing number of coders finding new and better ways to respond to emergencies.
With a team from Google and Medecins Sans Frontiers in London, Ganesh built an open-source medical information system for relief missions.
“We developed custom servers, tablets, and client and server-side software in under five months from concept to launch,” he says.
“This is a wonderful time to work in tech and make an impact on the lives of those who need help the most.”
“My job involves building products that matter to people.”
4. UX designer
UX design stands for ‘user experience design’ and involves designing how a product functions, including the look and feel. Take the iPhone, for example. UX designers have meticulously shaped everything from the swipe controls, to the settings panel, or how the apps jiggle when you want to delete them.
They’re curators of the ways in which we interact with technology, and the emotional responses we might have. Think of your favourite app, website or device. Is it fun? Is it aesthetically pleasing? Is it efficient? Then, chances are there’s a UX designer behind the scenes shaping your experience.
Felix Lee, UQ user experience design grad
“My job involves building products that matter to people,” says software designer Felix Lee (pictured), a University of Queensland graduate who works for Brisbane-based software company NetEngine.
“My typical day consists of usually pretty fun tasks such as designing user interfaces, conducting user design workshops and coding up designs; sometimes even pair-programming with co-workers to learn from each other.”
5. Business development manager
Business development managers are experts in providing direction for future business growth. Managing data analysis and assessing customer needs are key to what the business development manager does.
These are pretty high-end professionals, and will need to be able to manage teams across departments to get the job done. If you’re considering business development, start with a degree in business, economics, finance or marketing.
Michelle Dobson, business manager at ANZ
Michelle completed a Bachelor of Business (Management)/Information Systems at La Trobe University, then joined the ANZ Technology Graduate Program, where she learnt how core banking systems were designed and developed.
Her first management role saw Michelle contributing to ANZ’s largest ever technology upgrade, improving bank transaction software used in 17 countries.
“Maths has given me so many great opportunities, like experiencing new cultures and meeting amazing, inspiring people.”
Author: Eliza Brockwell
Eliza is passionate about creating content that encourages diversity of representation in STEM.