Employers open to hiring inexperienced coders amid talent crunch

Photo by Joyce Toh

Coding skills are growing in prevalence for many job roles across sectors in Singapore. However, almost nine in ten (89%) employers say that there is a shortage of talent with the required coding skills to a “large” and “some” extent.

With the challenge to find the right talent, seven in ten employers are open to hiring candidates who may not have the relevant education degree (67%) or job experience (65%) but have industry-relevant micro-credentials and certifications in coding skills for a role.

These are some of the key findings from NTUC LearningHub’s recently launched Industry Insights report on Coding, to uncover the importance of acquiring coding knowledge, the demand for tech-lite and tech-heavy roles, as well as the priority skills required of employees.

The report is based on a survey with 200 business leaders across various industries in Singapore, and interviews with industry practitioners, and experts from NTUC LearningHub and its training content partners.

It also offers recommendations on how aspiring coders from varying backgrounds and level of competency can upskill in coding.

According to employers, the top three reasons for tech talent shortage are “the difficulty in finding talent with the right requisite skills” (58%), “new technologies are outpacing supply of workers with the right skills” (49%), and “fierce competition among companies in hiring tech talent” (46%).

Commenting on the report findings, NTUC LearningHub’s Director of Infocomm Technology, Anthony Chew says, “These insights affirmed our observation that with today’s tech talent crunch, even inexperienced workers without prior qualifications or experience had managed to pivot to new roles in coding as long as they are willing to upskill.

“Beginners can embark on their learning journey with online courses to understand the basics of programming, before enrolling in instructor-led courses to further cultivate interest in the field.

“As a start, I highly encourage individuals to learn Python due to its ease of use and versatility. With continuous lifelong learning and stacking of the right micro-credentials and certifications, workers can easily transition across sectors and job roles with coding.”