Demand for tech skills is falling faster than employer demand during the recession: Requests for many technology skills decreased faster than job postings overall, which have dropped roughly 9% from March 2020 to May 2020.
What does this mean for colleges and universities this fall? To best prepare students for a shifting labor market and recruit students in the future, ensure your curricula are conferring still-in-demand skills. Our researchers analyzed nationwide employer demand to offer the three keys below.
1. Shift instruction to programming and scripting languages such as PHP and Scala
Programming/Scripting Languages to Deprioritize
- Go (-11.81% decline in demand)
- C# (-10.59%)
- R (-9.44%)
- SQL (-8.92%)
- Java (-8.90%)
Programming/Scripting Languages to Target
- PHP (-4.29%)
- Scala (-6.01%)
- Perl (-6.21%)
- Bash (-6.82%)
- C++ (-6.97%)
- C (-7.41%)
Source: Emsi Analyst
2. Dial in on cybersecurity, data engineering, and machine learning
Many tech skills will likely remain in-demand long-term, however, programs can better prepare students in the short-term with focused coursework on skills declining slower than average.
Skills to Deprioritize
- Data Warehousing (-18.69% decline in demand)
- Analytics (-15.07%)
- Tableau (-11.65%)
- Data Mining (-11.36%)
- Artificial Intelligence (-10.07%)
- Software Engineering (-9.83%)
- Big Data (-9.52%)
Skills to Target
- Cyber Security (-3.24%)
- Data Engineering (-5.31%)
- Machine Learning (-5.47%)
- Data Integrity (-7.87%)
- Data Security (-7.98%)
- Data Modeling (-8.38%)
- Cloud Computing (-8.39%)
Source: Emsi Analyst
3. Advertise your in-demand offerings to secure enrollments this fall
Students are facing a shifting job market during the COVID-19 pandemic, especially recent grads new to the labor market. Schools advertising knowledge of the shifting trends and how their programs are adapting could help secure enrollments. Interviews with major non-credit technology programs found increased inquiries following the COVID-19 outbreak, with some programs already seeing increasing enrollments (e.g., data science certificates). Program leaders did report more niche topics (e.g., blockchain certificates) did not see a similar boost.
Beyond tech skills, see our regional demand profiles on the coronavirus outbreak’s impacts on employer demand to learn more about what’s most demanded in your region since the outbreak began.