Sixty-three per cent of tech businesses asked by Barclays in its annual job creation survey said they would be seeking to fill new jobs this year – down from 78 per cent in 2012 – but a much higher proportion of role creation will be for senior executives.
The survey of 700 UK businesses, including 34 technology companies, also found that 58 per cent would be creating full-time jobs, again a reduction from 2012's 73 per cent. However, 57 per cent of tech companies' new jobs will be senior roles – up from a mere 15 per cent in 2012.
According to Barclays, the tech sector seems more upbeat than the national cross-sector average – 56 per cent of all companies surveyed plan to create new jobs this year, which is little changed from last year's 58 per cent.
Sean Duffy, managing director of Barclays' technology, media and telecoms team, said: "Many businesses in this fast-growing sector are rapidly reinventing and broadening their reach as they add new capabilities to their offerings."
He added that the "significant increase" in top-level jobs was higher than in any other sector – just 23 per cent of firms overall say they will be creating senior executive positions this year. This may demonstrate how serious tech businesses are about achieving their ambitious growth plans, Duffy suggested.
The proportion of tech firms aiming to hire for middle management and skilled positions also shrank from 2012's 97 per cent to 93 per cent. Entry-level positions remained flat, with 37 per cent of tech companies aiming to create them in 2013, down slightly from 2012's 38 per cent.
Sixty-nine per cent of the 34 firms asked said they did not expect to shed any jobs this year, according to the Barclays poll.
The tech companies polled were less than positive about government efforts, however.
• 63 per cent expected a shortfall when it comes to the private sector compensating for public sector job losses, and of those, 23 per cent think there will be a major shortfall (2012: 81 per cent and 25 per cent).
• 88 per cent said efforts to remove barriers to job creation were not affecting their business (2012: 84 per cent).
• 59 per cent were not interested in taking on ex-public sector workers, although this decreased since last year (2012: 67 per cent).
• 39 per cent believed ex-public sector workers were not well equipped for a role in their business (2012: 55 per cent).
• 72 per cent said that sales increases lead to job creation, rather than creating jobs in order to drive sales, a view which is down on the previous year (2012: 84 per cent).
• 78 per cent said that a reduction in employers' National Insurance would change the job market. This suggests the Budget announcement about waiving the first £2,000 of employers' contributions could be what businesses want.
• 35 per cent of firms think the government's "shares for rights" scheme will be popular.
Market research firm Critical Research carried out the survey for Barclays in January and February.
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