Hong Kong's Tech Challenge

Comprehensive approach required to help employers in difficult market.

Hong Kong's Tech Challenge

Asia Pacific

Following the Hong Kong government’s rolling out of the Technology Talent Admission Scheme Robert Half’s 2018 Salary Guide has delivered some insights into this particular workplace. The government’s initiative had the aim of helping companies hire foreign IT experts and the independent survey commissioned by Robert Half gave a clear indication of how difficult talent was to find.

  • 92 per cent of Hong Kong CIOs find it challenging to source qualified IT professionals.
  • Top three in-demand IT roles in Hong Kong are: Fullstack Software Developer, Application/Product Support Manager and IT Security Specialist.
  • More than seven in 10 (71 per cent) CIOs are willing to pay a higher starting salary to IT jobseekers with previous project experience, followed by more than half (51 per cent) who would do the same for skilled candidates with previous experience in product/service launches.
  • Previous company/industry experience and team lead experience closely follow with respectively 49 per cent and 47 per cent. However, just one-fifth (20 per cent) of CIOs consider education a critical factor when deciding to award their IT staff a higher starting salary.

“The IT skills shortage has been a concern in the IT industry in Hong Kong for several years, which is having a significant impact on business operations,” notes Adam Johnston, managing director of Robert Half Hong Kong. “The government scheme aimed at expanding the IT talent pool accessible by Hong Kong employers is expected to provide great support to businesses in the city in the short term.”

However, Hong Kong is also competing on a regional and even international scale to attract suitably skilled and qualified IT professionals. To address the skills shortage in the long term with a more sustainable approach, Johnston believes education systems and institutions must play a key role in providing a continuous influx of skilled local IT talent into the employment market and upskilling existing staff.

“A comprehensive approach where education institutions work in conjunction with the wider business community and potentially supported by government initiatives is key in order to successfully overcome the talent shortage,” Johnston concludes.



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