During the past decade, the tech sector experienced explosive growth and huge demand for specialists. And things got even hotter when the Covid-19 pandemic ravaged the world and moved more businesses online. Tech hiring blazed across Silicon Valley more rapidly, and tech giants like Amazon and Facebook even doubled the number of workers to stay apace with the increasing demand… No longer. The last year has become game-changing for most industries, including the IT field. According to tech job tracker layoffs.fyi, there have been more than 200,000 tech jobs lost since the start of 2022. Actually, the tech industry is confronting one of its worst contractions in history, with Google, Microsoft, Amazon, and Meta announcing additional mass layoffs over the span of a few upcoming months. What’s happening, and is there a future for tech land?
Massive Layoffs in NumbersSo far, Google, Microsoft, Amazon, and other big companies have already laid off more than 70,000 employees and striving for more. Google has recently announced that the company plans to lay off 12,000 people, while Microsoft said it’s letting go of 10,000 employees. Amazon also began a new round of job cuts within the company that will eliminate about 18,000 employees and become the largest workforce reduction in its history. Meta, in its turn, announced its most significant round of layoffs in November 2022. The company said it planned to eliminate 13% of its staff (more than 11,000 employees). Shortly after closing the $44 billion purchase of Twitter in October 2022, Elon Musk cut around 3,700 workers, which equals nearly half the staff. Besides the aforementioned companies, there were also critical rounds of lay-offs in the following well-known companies: Tesla (6,000 jobs cut), Robinhood (1,100 jobs cut), Snap (1,000 jobs cut), Shopify (1,000 jobs cut), Stripe (1,100 jobs cut).
What Are the Reasons?Why are so many IT companies laying people off? Does it all come down to the need to reduce costs as global economic growth is increasingly slowing down right now? Let’s be real, the aforementioned companies aren’t teetering on the edge of bankruptcy. Instead, they experienced record-breaking profits not so long ago. And, of course, this money couldn’t evaporate so quickly. The thing is, investors have changed their minds about how they’re evaluating companies. In fact, when companies are growing fast, and their revenue is reaching 20-30% a year, nobody cares about profits. But when the revenue is slowing down, investors become more cautious. In other words, as the revenue of the companies accelerated greatly through the pandemic in 2020-2021, they hired too many people. Then happened the economic downturn in 2022. Hence, the reductions. Without a doubt, the majority of big companies have tens of billions of dollars in reserves, and they think it’s relevant to invest in something new rather than support all operations. For example, Microsoft, which announced the reduction of around 10,000 employees, simultaneously stated that it’s going to invest $10 billion in OpenAI. Similarly, Google’s parent company called Alphabet has also said it’s reducing its workforce by 12,000 people whilst planning to invest in its own “AI-powered answer to ChatGPT.” Of course, it’s not the only reason for the massive cutbacks… It shouldn’t come as a surprise that global economics lives its worst times, and many companies really experience a financial crisis. What is shocking, however, is that the average level of experience of those tech specialists who were fired makes approximately 11.5 years. The possible reason for this is that more experienced workers earn higher wages, and by reducing them, businesses can meet their financial goals and survive. So, it’s not all those junior developers with little experience that are at risk. What is positive, laid-off techies have pretty good job prospects. Recent research by ZipRecruiter shows that laid-off specialists have landed back on their feet pretty quickly. Actually, 8 out of 10 techies who lost their job found a new one after three months of being axed (almost 40% of them found a new tech job within one month of starting their search). As icing on the cake, in the US alone, the wage growth reached historic highs, especially for workers switching jobs (50% higher in November 2022 than it was for people staying in their jobs). From this, it’s easy to conclude that tech skills are always in “high demand” across the economy.” And what is notable, the demand for tech workers goes beyond big tech firms and traditional startups. Coders, engineers, cybersecurity professionals, data experts, mobile app developers, and AI engineers can find a place in many other industries.
The Best Industries for Software Developers
RetailA few decades ago, software engineers had nothing in common with a career in retail. But today, the retail industry employs nearly the same number of software engineers (if not more) than Silicon Valley. Modern retailers are doing their best to create something unique and outperform their competitors. To stand out in this digital age, some companies are even blowing up their entire infrastructures and building new microservices platforms. So, the retail industry is always in need of UI/UX professionals, mobile developers, and DevOps specialists. Do note that in most cases, retailers are looking for specific skills – they want to hire developers who understand not only the relevant technologies but customers' needs as well. Therefore, be ready to go beyond writing code. You should also understand consumer products and what clients want if you’d like to tie your career to retail.
Research and DevelopmentThis sphere is vast. It involves a host of game-changing product labs, research and development groups, as well as specific business units requiring specific types of software engineers. Speaking about the brightest examples, we can consider the $12.6-billion media company called “Thompson Reuters,” which is going to re-invent video news for the next generation. The company plans to offer personalized TV news delivered via mobile phones and needs many developers to turn this project to life.
Government and DefenseNowadays, almost all serious spheres and businesses have become digital, and the government-industrial complex stands at the forefront of that “digitalization.” That’s why it desperately needs software programmers, big data analysts, and professionals with strong cyber-security skills. The most significant tech trends in government include public service automation, cloud computing, AI & data analytics, cybersecurity, digital citizen identity, and government data management.
HealthcareMedical care is something people will always need and will always spend money on, no matter what’s going on in the economy. People still willingly spend money on their health and health-related services. Currently, there are about 350,000 mobile health apps spread throughout different app marketplaces, and the worth of the mHealth market was estimated at $63.88 billion in 2022. And it’s expected to grow at an incredible CAGR of 18.2% up to $243.57 billion by 2030. Simply put, mobile health becomes the go-to solution for healthcare providers, patients, and stakeholders. Numerous applications continue to revolutionize the ways of accessing healthcare services – scheduling appointments, contacting doctors via chats or calls, providing reminders for taking medication, searching for health information, etc. Besides that, we can also see the rise of cloud-based technologies in the healthcare industry, utilization of big data, and integration of AI. The healthcare application development world is really exciting, and its future looks bright.
EducationThe same goes for the educational sector, which can do nothing without technology today. Online learning gives students an opportunity to acquire knowledge faster, easier, and cheaper than ever before. Not to mention, eLearning can be a real salvation during the pandemic. Education extensively relies on mobile learning, AI chatbots, and gamification methods in e-learning apps. No doubt, the impact of EdTech on the education industry is huge. Consequently, the demand for skilled specialists is huge too.
Top Reason to Choose JavaAs you have seen, software development plays a central role in many industries. So, we bet there will be an increase in demand for software developers in the long run. Following on from all the said above, it’s also easy to conclude that Java will stay one of the core programming languages in both start-ups and big multinational companies. Why? Because Java boasts a base everywhere, making it an optimal choice for AI, ML, big data, IoT, blockchain, and other emerging trends across all industries. Without a doubt, a Java-related career is also going to be very rewarding.