Digitalisation is gradually reaching all departments in organisations in nearly all sectors. Companies are increasingly aware that without a defined and planned strategy it will be extremely difficult to remain competitive. This also applies to the talent needed to implement the digital transformation and carry organisations forward. Meanwhile, in today’s labour market, hiring tech talent remains a challenge.

The increasing openness of companies to invest in technological advancement is a result of the changing world. To stay competitive in a situation where more and more aspects of people’s lives take place in the virtual world, it is necessary to adapt an organisation’s offer and business processes to the new reality. As a result, digitalisation, which until recently was spoken of mainly in the context of tech, sales and financial companies, is now boldly permeating other industries. An increasing number of organisations also recognise that numerous benefits justify investment in technological development.

Clear advantages power digital processes

The biggest benefits of well-implemented digitisation processes are reduced costs and increased profits, as well as identifying new business opportunities and taking care of security and processes within the company more efficiently. Technological development also frees up time and resources to look more closely at people’s needs and, as a consequence, increase employee effectiveness and workforce and customer satisfaction. Digitalisation increases organisation competitiveness and attractiveness. Conversely, technological stagnation is not just a series of speed bumps on an organisation’s development road, but very often results in poor business decisions.

Therefore, it is not surprising that companies are increasingly willing to invest in digitalisation by purchasing equipment, software and databases, as well as external IT services. Organisations most often invest in e-commerce, digital marketing, hardware and operational processes – implementing various CRM, BI or ERP solutions.

Key technologies – key experts

Where the labour market is concerned, employers increasingly invest in talent. The steadily growing demand for knowledge and skills in data analysis, big data, artificial intelligence or machine learning indicate that these areas will significantly increase their market share in the coming years. This is because professionals in these areas of expertise possess the knowledge in technologies extremely valuable from the business point of view. Armed with extensive data on products, prices, users and user behaviour, businesses enhance services with appropriate pricing strategies, lists of preferred customers or the most convenient delivery options for consumers.

Cybersecurity is still underestimated by many organisations, but a growing number of businesses invest heavily developing it. This applies in particular to companies with a high share of online business activity, such as banking or e-commerce. Stronger data, systems and IT infrastructure security is crucial to reduce risks for both businesses and end users, minimising incidents experienced by the latter, especially in the area of payments. Cybersecurity is still niche – experts in this field are offered very attractive salaries. Level of experience and expertise go hand in hand with increased earnings and professional opportunities in companies with a global brand. Cybersecurity experts in Poland more and more often hold positions with an international scope of responsibility.

Unfortunately, not every organisation approaches digitalisation in a conscious and strategic manner. For some companies, leadership resistance is an obstacle to technological change. Hence, digitalisation is often seen only as an extra cost or a tool to achieve short-term goals, not as a long-term investment that leads to a new business model.

Crucial tech talent

The process of digitalisation involves storing, structuring, processing, analysing exchanging and applying data. This means that the number of recruitment processes for positions such as IT business analyst is at an all-time high. We are also seeing growing demand for data engineering specialists from different types of organisations. In recent years, employer interest in this type of profiles has increased significantly. It is especially true for manufacturing companies that invested in their IT structures by creating regional and global centres. Their new teams consist of specialists in data and business analysis, data warehouse and data engineering.

The pandemic put the spotlight on medical and pharmaceutical organisations, which for several years have been investing in state-of-the-art technologies and increasing their tech teams. In recent months, Polish specialists in data science, AI and machine learning have received enormous interest from foreign organisations from the medical and pharmaceutical sector. Working in such companies is increasingly attractive for top tech talent as it enables daily contact with the latest technologies, interesting topics and exposure to large amounts of data. Apart from businesses in technology, finance and banking sector, medical and pharmaceutical organisations now offer the highest salaries in the market and have recently become the most sought-after places to work for tech experts.

In the vast majority of cases, Polish and foreign organisations focus on recruiting specialists and experts. Companies are looking for a minimum of three to five years of experience, the ability to work in remote teams, great communication skills and – in the case of international companies – confidence in the use of foreign language in a business environment. To sum up, the ideal candidate is a person who has vast knowledge and experience, can quickly onboard in the new workplace and support the organisation on its way to effective digitalisation.

Without automation and advanced data analysis, companies are becoming less competitive as they are slow to react, and make flawed business decisions. This is why it is so important not only to devise a good implementation process of new technologies, but also to secure necessary skillsets within the company. In order to build strong teams, employers should simultaneously hire tech experts and constantly upskill less experienced staff, who together with senior specialists will enable a smooth digitalisation process.