5 Most Difficult to Fill IT Jobs

Grid Showing 5 Most Difficult to Fill IT Jobs


Recruiting the right candidate is always a challenge but more so when it comes to filling those specialised positions. Companies have experienced a rapid rise in digital transformation since the start of the pandemic and these skills have never been more in demand than at present.

According to reports released by the Skills Development Corporation, a professional skills development company, and the  2021 ICT Skills Survey, there is a chronic skills shortage within the technology sector.

South African companies now face the daunting prospect of finding candidates that are not only highly skilled but also the right fit for their organisation. The recruitment process is very competitive with companies trying to fill similar positions. Making use of a trusted recruitment agency is the best way forward for both companies and candidates alike. 

We often think of recruitment agencies from an employer perspective. However, research shows that employees, especially with specialised skill sets, like software developers, are more likely to find the right position when going through an agency. 

Let’s look at which positions are most in-demand and therefore the most challenging to fill.

Java Developers

Java continues to be one of the most popular programming languages globally. With an estimated 9 million developers using Java on a regular basis.  Any software developer with this highly sought-after skill will always be in demand.

Java Developers are responsible for the design, development, implementation, and management of all Java-based applications within an organisation. Roles can vary with developers being responsible for one or several applications. 

These software developers will generally be involved in all phases from conducting software analysis through to programming and testing.

Software Engineers

Software engineers are able to use different programming languages, platforms and architecture to design, develop and maintain various software systems. These software developers are skilled in more than one programming language and are key to ensuring ongoing innovation within an organisation.

Their responsibilities can vary depending on the position. But most often they are also involved in writing and testing code, evaluating and testing new software programs, as well as improving and refining existing software.

Data Scientists & Data Engineers

Data has become one of the most important assets a company can have. Effective management and analysis of data provides companies with a significant competitive advantage.

This area of a business is managed by data engineers who are responsible for the management of the company’s data systems. Including setup and maintenance. They have a high level of understanding of which systems and processes to use. They also know how to best work with the various technology systems available.

Data scientists combine their skills in computer science, statistics and mathematics to gain key insights for the company. They make use of a range of data analysis tools enabling them to analyse, manage, model and interpret the data to create implementable action plans.

Enterprise Architect

Enterprise architecture is fundamental to any business wanting to achieve a competitive edge through information technology. Now more than ever, companies are looking at ways of reducing costs, increasing their flexibility, and regulating their technology-related environment.

An enterprise architect ensures that the company’s business strategy uses the best technology systems to reach its goals. They are responsible for the oversight, continuous improvement and upgrading of enterprise services, hardware and software.

This key role within any company is always in demand.

Full-Stack Web Developer

Full-stack web developers have cross-discipline web development skills working with both the back-end and front-end of the company’s website. They are responsible for the coding, design and layout of a company’s website, taking both the function and user-experience into account.

These multi-role specialists are always in demand due to their specialisation in both graphic design and computer programming. Full-stack web developers are responsible for everything from software development and design through to ensuring platform compatibility and optimization.

The ongoing transformation within the technology sector and focus on digital transformation will continue to keep these key roles in huge demand. Companies will always be on the lookout for these much-needed skills. And professionals within the IT industry will continue to be under pressure to upgrade and acquire new skills and experience in order to remain competitive.


This ongoing demand creates opportunities for all participants within this competitive market. Companies are now starting to look at upskilling their existing employees and employing graduates who may have the qualifications but lack experience. Candidates who have the necessary skills and experience are in a prime position when it comes to the recruitment process.

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