Welcome to Spring! It’s hard to believe we’re entering the last three months of 2018 and are well and truly on the slippery slide to Christmas. We hope you’re all enjoying the longer nights and warmer weather we’re experiencing on the other side of daylight savings. It has been a productive three months for us at Sourced, with plenty to report on in this end-of-quarter wrap up.

General Comments

The third quarter of the year started off on a slightly quieter note, which we were expecting given the sheer growth that our clients experienced over Q2. With so much permanent recruitment successfully packed into Q2, we always knew that Q3 would be slower to pick up pace and have really only seen the market starting to hit its straps again from early September. On the whole, permanent recruitment has continued to far outweigh contract, although contract has lifted as well.

We noted previously that right through 2017 and into early 2018, levels of staff retention had been very high, and we were largely reliant on candidates relocating to Christchurch from within the country and internationally to keep up with client demands. This trend has certainly shifted across both Q2 and Q3 of this year, with the number of candidates moving jobs within Christchurch now overshadowing those new to the market. In terms of what has been driving this internal movement, the most common motivators are still the same – more responsibility, more interesting projects, promotion and career advancement. With many employees having been in the same permanent role for 5+ years, this is a natural cycle, and decisions are being made on solid selection and motivation criteria. Salary is still not coming into the equation to a major extent for most candidates, other than the usual readjustment to market rates. We do expect levels of movement within the Christchurch tech sector to slow as we approach Christmas, and don’t anticipate them to rise again until early in the new year.

As we noted above, permanent recruitment has far outweighed contract recruitment across Q3, however, we have seen a slight uplift in the latter. This has been predominantly focused around high priority projects that need to quickly apply skilled resources, as well as short term pieces of work where there are insufficient internal resources for the requirements. We’ve seen a real increase in demand for a variety of contract skills, including Development, Testing, Database, Technical Writing and Business Analysis. However, the Project/Programme Management space remains very quiet as we’ve seen for most of this year.

Within Sourced Walls

It’s been a steady and productive period for the Sourced team over the past three months. We thoroughly enjoyed this years’ Tech Summit, where we were once again a key sponsor and held a stand in the main display area. This event is always a fantastic opportunity to catch up with old friends, clients and candidates, and find out what’s been happening over the past 12 months. This year, we were really impressed with the quality of the speakers and the number of smaller, emerging tech companies on display.

Who’s in Demand

In terms of candidates in demand, from a permanent perspective we’re seeing a broad range of skills being sought-after across Development (Leadership and Hands-on), with Test Automation/Developer in Test, and Front-End/JavaScript skills particularly desired as the demand for talent surpasses supply. Business Systems Analysis and Electronics Engineering have followed closely behind with only a few clients recruiting in volume, and we remain busy in the .NET Development space as well.

Interestingly, Electronics kept us busy right through the second quarter within the Embedded Firmware, Hardware and Test areas. The R&D/Electronics space has always been a key market for us, but this year it has really taken centre stage as activity increases across both our large international clients and smaller startups/emerging tech companies.

For the first time this year there has been a lift in the Management/Team Leader space, with quite a bit of turnover both at the CIO and IT Management level. We haven’t seen this in any volume through 2017/2018, so we’re anticipating upcoming changes in what has been a relatively stable market. We know of at least three CIO roles currently being recruited here in Christchurch and an equal number that have been recently filled. Watch this space!

On the contracting side, this quarter has been a real mixed bag, with recent demand across Business Analysis, Technical Writing, Software Development and Database Engineering. Resources have tended to be directed towards existing projects that need to pick up the pace, meet key deadlines or just get additional work across the line. New projects, on the other hand, are still proving to be slower to come onstream.

Overall, we are experiencing a busy period with no signs of a slowdown. Growth is still happening across the sector, while lower than usual retention levels are also driving activity. Both contractors and permanent staff members are in demand for a diverse mix of BAU and existing projects. Contrary to reports coming out of Wellington and Auckland, we are happy to reveal that business confidence remains very high, while salary levels stay static.

We hope you enjoyed this update and look forward to keeping you abreast with how the rest of the year evolves!

In Case You Missed It

Over the last quarter, we’ve written several blogs. You can find them below:

Hiring Candidates with Potential

When looking for your next hire, it’s not always the obvious choice that’s the best fit. By hiring for the future, you’re not only recognising people that have the potential to thrive in a new role, but also adding genuine value to the business in the long-term. Check out our advice to hiring for potential, here.

Key Things You Should Do Before Applying For Your Next IT Job

Whilst it could be tempting to jump straight into the job market, there are a few key things you should do before making a move. We’ve prepared some top tips to set you up for success. Read more here.



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