The online retail sector is driving increased demand for IT and web design professionals, according to global IT recruitment specialist Greythorn.
Greythorn, which has 150,000 registered IT professionals on its database, said it had seen an 89 percent increase in IT roles placed in online retail over the past year, compared to the previous twelve months.
The figure follows the November results of the Annual Survey Hours and Earnings taken by the Office of National Statistics (ONS), which analyses the National Insurance records of 180,000 people.
According to the ONS, the number of roles in IT and web design has risen by 32,000 over the past year. The biggest increase has been in web designers which has risen over 19 percent from 31,000 to 37,000 roles.
Greythorn UK director Mark Baxter said as growth in traditional high-street retail slows, online retail is picking up pace and creating a strong demand for IT professionals.
"The list of high street insolvencies is becoming a roll-call and there appears to be no end of famous names struggling or going under. It is undoubtedly sad news, but there is a silver lining in the growth of IT roles," said Baxter.
"As online shopping grows, companies are increasingly investing in improving the customer experience and the back office operations supporting online sales.
"It is a key stage in transferring to a high tech economy. The number of specialised new roles is growing and that is only good news for IT professionals."
Online spending grew nearly 11 percent in the year ending February 2013. This is two and half times the growth rate of total retail sales, according to the British Retail Consortium.
For this reason a number of large online retailers are focussed on growing their IT teams. For example, John Lewis announced the hire of 100 new IT staff in January 2013, after already hiring 50 new IT professionals last year.
As demand for IT staff increases, figures from a European Commission report expect the UK to have a shortage of 100,000 people to fill the IT jobs in the next few years.
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