While the supply for jobs was low at the beginning of the year, certain jobs with rare skills have shown an increase in demand as the year progresses.
Want a new job? Or a new career filled with purpose, more career prospects and perhaps a beefy salary to go with it? Well, look no further. According to an article published by Adzuna, 2017 could still be the year that you land your dream job.
Although the supply of jobs was unsurprisingly lower at the start of the year and competition fierce, research by Adzuna showed a reduction in demand for certain skills that abated by the end of January. However, while demand was lower and sample sizes also smaller, the message was clear: The rare skills of 2016 are here to stay for 2017.
Engineering, programming and financial skills are highly sought after, and while many job types see lower salaries posted on average over the December holidays, these saw higher figures in compensation while other sectors saw drops. One interesting increase was the salary average noted for chefs, who scored 12% more on salaries over the festive season, possibly due to restaurants realising higher demand in their own industry. Receptionists, also, saw the only increase in demand and salary, proving those skills a good set to have going forward.
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A notable drop occurred in sales related positions, however this could be due to many vacancies not showing commissions in the salary data. Estate agents, for example, earn an average of around R15,000 according to the sample, however in reality, a larger part of their income is from commission earnings.
As the demand increased later in January 2017, many businesses were forced to increase the price on their engineering and developer talent. Java, .Net and PHP developers have again lead the demand, with engineering skills very close behind. Of the main skills required in general industry, civil engineers have topped the salary pile with an average of over R600,000. For more refined skills, C-suite executives, programme directors, certain lawyers and energy engineers have seen salaries way above R1,000,000 per annum.
The top skill across all industries is clearly project management. Candidates with experience and qualifications, as well as certifications, in managing a single or multiple projects, are currently in good stead to be employed not matter what the economic situation in South Africa.
There are currently over 300 project management jobs on Careers24.
It remains to be seen how the job landscape will change by the end of 2017, but for now it’s still a scarce skills market. The message to job seekers is still to upskill themselves by taking on courses and obtaining new qualifications, as well as demanding training from current and prospective employers.
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Jesse Green is Country Manager for Adzuna, a South African online job aggregator, who regularly writes on the journeys of job seekers and employers, focusing on how to better recruit talent. He is very passionate about online recruitment and has spent many years in both recruitment consulting and working for some of South Africa's top classifieds websites.