Skill Trends Top 10s

Lets analyze skill trends in the 2014 recruitment wrap up so we can better understand what is happening for 2015.


In Demand:


The job postings are clear. IT job skills are the most frequently mentioned requirements for considering candidates. Indeed’s December 31 job trends report specifically cited that “‘HTML5’ is the #1 job trend – the fastest growing keyword found in online job postings – ahead of “MongoDB” in second place and “iOS” in third place.”


Here is Indeed’s top 10:






Mobile app





Social Media


IT skills are king right now and it will be important for recruiters to be familiar with these terms in order to source candidates better.


Since IT skills seem to be the most in demand, it is helpful to look at reports that focus on those skills specifically. WantedAnalytics offered some numbers on their site for the Top IT skills between September and December last year. According to them “Programming languages take up 5 of the top 20 spots, with structured query language (SQL) being the most commonly advertised IT skill set. Java, JavaScript, C-sharp (C#), and Python were the other in-demand programming languages.”


Here is WantedAnalytics’ top 10:




“Software Development”



Quality Assurance


Systems Development Lifecycle

Microsoft SQL Server

Application Development


Again, this report sheds light on the huge demand for IT skills. WantedAnalytics’ report is more heavily weighted towards SQL database demand and downplays the demand for alternative database language skills like MongoDB which was the #2 spot in the Indeed report. Also, it downplays the demand for smart-phone programming that took 3 of the top 5 slots for Indeed.  It doesn’t mention Indeed’s #1 skill HTML, but it’s obviously still hugely important since JavaScript is #5 and is by nature paired with HTML skills.  Indeed’s skill demand hints at growth for startups with accessible languages taking top slots and open-source software Hadoop at #7. WantedAnalytics advertises a more mixed job environment with a strong placing for traditional enterprise technology Microsoft SQL Server at #9 and QA at #6 as well as demand for open technologies Linux and Unix, #4 and #7 respectively.


Growth Areas:


Skill trends that made the biggest jump in job postings differ depending on who you ask. Elance’s reports show Ruby on Rails, Ruby, Ecommerce, and Game Programming making the most significant gains-in-mention on job postings. On the other hand, WantedAnalytics’s data claims it is Adobe LifeCycle ES that made the most dramatic improvement over the prior year. “Adobe LifeCycle ES experienced the greatest year-over-year increase, up 44.2%.” WantedAnalytics’ data again reinforces the notion that enterprise technology is still a big player in job postings, which is at odds with the more startup-friendly picture that Indeed and Elance are painting.


In Supply:


Now let’s look at some data from Elance about our candidate pool.


Elance’s Top 10 Freelancer’s Skills (Highest population first):


Admin Assistant

Web Programmer

Internet Marketer


Microsoft Excel

Customer Service

Microsoft Word

Adobe Photoshop

HTML Developer



It’s clear from this top 10 that there is somewhat of a skills gap between supply and demand, but there are also a lot of very promising signals. Writer is #1 on the list which should provide relief to organizations who are learning that a successful marketing campaign requires novel content and social engagement. This skillset will pair well with Indeed’s #10 demand for Social Media skills. High rankings for marketing skills in general will make for some low-hanging fruit in filling the social media demand.


With supply for web programmers at #3 and HTML Developers at #10 there is clearly a huge opportunity for filling high-paying web positions in our sources’ top 10.


The biggest challenge this year will be finding database programmers to fill the positions that are highest in demand according to our sources. Unfortunately, database skills did not make the top 10 freelancer skills and it will be interesting to see how recruiters adapt to handle the limited market supply.

All the surveyed services are in agreement about web technology’s dominance in recruitment demands, with some differences involving the prominence of traditional programming technology. Technology is king this year, but there will also be a lot of opportunity for some traditional skills like writing.

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