Heading towards hecatomb? With this title, which is not very sensational, I wanted to draw attention to something that is happening, of great relevance for our sector and of what (I get the impression) we are not aware of its importance. Although we are immersed in a “strong slowdown” in the sector, not long ago we complained about how complicated it was to find qualified professionals (in some cases, even find professionals, simply).
We Are Heading Towards Hecatomb
And this problem will not disappear automagically at the end of this time. On the contrary, we are going to find a complicated labor market to recruit. The latest studies carried out by Addeco and ATI speak of a lack of 25,000 professionals in the sector, it is something to think about.
But this is not a problem, since at least graduates in Computer Science, Telecommunications,etc. continue to feed the boilers of the new generations, right? Well, apparently, no. The University of Malaga speaks of the fall of 43% in the last five years, with a net loss of 1,224 enrollments. The UVA happens something similar. Not in all neighborhoods is the same draft but in this magnificent article appears a graphic that gives you to think:
Evolution of registrations
And these data are even more worrisome because, without taking into account the current situation, it is about degrees in which “there is no unemployment” will it be that ” Are these Romans crazy “? It seems that our youth has decided that they do not want to study a career that has a good start (they will have it once the crisis ends)…
I get the impression, given the growing need for IT staff and the low production of graduates by universities , that a perfect storm is approaching in which we will have many project managers and managers “giving the drum” and very few “rowers” ” with the effect that this can cause in the sector. This is the system of Heading Towards Hecatomb.
I think that before the first variable we can only rejoice, and therefore act on the second. Why this change of trend? I think there are two factors to consider:
The incorrect use of university degrees discourages new generations and I say incorrect use on their part on the one hand, since in many cases they are people who just want and like is to program. Why do they invest 5 years of their life to study engineering to program? In this again we may have some guilt , since we have devoted ourselves to include diplomas or degrees as requirements in many jobs of pure developer Would not it be better to encourage professional training for these profiles, which OJO, should be paid according to your qualification?
Derived from the previous problem, we are measuring and valuing economically the same as the one who wants to act as an engineer (yes, spending some time in development who cannot start “from general”) that the person who wants to develop only ( or layout webs, or being a systems technician … etc.) without aspirations to change … given that they are all engineers and a priori it is not possible to differentiate them. This another system of Heading Towards Hecatomb.
There is another series of much more qualitative variables that are also evolving to the detriment of the image of our sector, and which undoubtedly have much to do with this decline in interest in studying degrees related to ICT (not necessarily corresponding to reality, but it is the perception that youth have and therefore we must value it with care):
The image of the profession: Working in the ICT sector involves very long working days (this generation appreciates above all their free time, let’s not forget), very low salaries, little training and job insecurity.
The tremendous (de) regulation that currently exists in the sector and that is not expected to improve substantially with the new framework
The lack of attributions that the profession has in comparison with other licensed engineers (I have been asked more than once what is the use of doing a five-year career?
What turns out to be an aberration, in my opinion, is that currently the person who takes care of my son receives more money per month than a graduate in computer science.
In short, we talked a lot about the urgent need to change the production model of our country, to aggressively encourage innovation, to take the technological leadership in Europe but I miss structural initiatives draft, especially with regard to new generations.
Heading Towards Hecatomb
In any case, we are not going to “kick the ball forward” (magnificent expression) and leave it all in the hands of superior entities, and we are going to think about some simple initiatives of what we can do from our jobs:
Hire people based on their worth, studies and function. If it is about people who will never evolve to more complex positions, we should opt for people with professional training, with a commensurate remuneration. And if we are going to hire people who will evolve over time to more complex functions, remunerate it accordingly. This should create a difference that would allow people to decide what they want to do in their professional life, and not just go the “middle way”, that is, all graduates. This is also a type of Heading Towards Hecatomb.
Promote that people contribute ideas , value them and, when possible, let them develop them.
Promote people according to their worth . Although it sounds like a truism, it is not done as often as it would be desirable (beware, I’m not talking about barbarities like automatically uploading the category of a person who has been like a zombie in front of the screen for x years )
UPDATE (31/08/2009) : An interesting piece of news in the newspaper “Las Provincias” quantifies the future needs of the sector in Comunitat Valenciana: “7,200 computer scientists are needed. And in the next five years, the sector calculates that it will have a deficit of 10,000 highly qualified professionals and 30,000 telecommunications engineers. “
UPDATE (09/03/2010) : “The mysterious disappearance of computer scientists and ‘telecos'” is an article published in the newspaper “El Mundo” that delves into the question.
UPDATE (04/10/2010) : Today article has been cover in Meneame, and has led to an interesting discussion that has only partially reflected here (with glowing comments and rightly so many times). I get the impression that in some cases I have not managed to convey the idea of the article, so I will try to summarize in a few ideas what I intended to convey:
People do not study careers, degrees, FPs related to computers because they work a thousand hours, they are fatally charged and the future prospects are not better and we wonder why they do not study this type of races ?. I spent more than a year working “for the face” to learn,so I understand it perfectly.
The lack of which spoke at that time (remember it is more than a year ago) is A FUTURE, and assuming that the forecasts reported by this and other studies are correct (which obviously can not endorse), Of course, do not forget that ICT are gradually taking weight in the balance of production, not only in absolute volume but in dependence.
One of the big problems we have now is that it seems that the only way to prosper economically as a computer is to stop working “touching” IT, and become “boss”, which usually produces more harm than all right. It is necessary that we begin to encourage that technical profiles continue to evolve within technology, not channeling them towards management as the only alternative. A good software architect is worth his weight in gold, although most are not willing to pay for it (regardless of his studies). This is another type of Heading Towards Hecatomb.
I think that the theoretical saturation that is coming, as many of you have commented, is going to come very well to the sector (I am a computer scientist), and will put the computer work in value. I find it aberrant (and I have expressed it in other articles) that a profile as a standard falls well below its agreement,I do not believe in “coffee for all” (good developers must charge much better than normalitos), but if in working from a minimum that is situated in what the agreement marks (for that it is, although it is not usually ignored). This is also another thing of Heading Towards Hecatomb.
It has never been my intention to say that a developer does not contribute anything much less (I started like that, and I still like it). I’m talking about the difference between a “peeling” developer (someone who only follows the specifications of an analyst and has no interest in doing more, that there are and many) the architect / analyst, regardless of whether he is FP, Engineer or whatever he is able to design the architecture, the model ,etc. This is the final things of Heading Towards Hecatomb.