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Perl the most sought-after software skill in 2021 says Tunga

By , ITWeb
Africa , 17 Mar 2021

Perl, followed by Ruby, C++, Python and SQL are the top five most sought-after software skills in 2021.

That is according to research by Dutch IT staffing and software outsourcing company Tunga.

The company has leveraged its work with over 400 software developers in Egypt, Nigeria and Uganda, as well as extensive market research, to release a list of most in demand software skills for this year.

Research covered what businesses are currently looking for and what they are willing to pay, with the objective to help companies fast-track building their software team with experienced African developers.

Tunga looked at the times languages appeared in job vacancies, which ranged from around 2.500 postings with Golang to 84.000 for Python.

“SQL came in just behind Python, but in many cases was demanded in combination with a host of other skills. The number three was Java. The next step was to look at what companies were willing to pay a developer. Hiring a Scala, Go or Perl developer is most expensive. Whereas Go might not be literally among the most in demand software skills, it is definitely among the relatively most scarce skills. Where absolute demand is high, generally speaking the supply of developers proficient in those languages is also substantial, so salary levels say something about relative demand. Demand for Perl, VBA and C++ developers has most momentum – they are becoming more difficult to source and therefore more expensive,” the company stated.

Ernesto Spruyt, CEO of Tunga, about the TOP 20: “As Tunga, we like to unleash talent and a good starting point for aspiring developers, is to know what to focus on. For our TOP 20, we made an equally-weighted ranking based on the number of outstanding job postings, salary level and salary momentum. These three aspects together should give a good impression of what software skills are the most in demand in the coming year.”

“The outcome is very interesting to say the least. Both Perl and Ruby are languages that are generally considered doomed, but the pressure is still high. It is possible that the negative press they got, made it unattractive for developers to take them up as new skills, creating a relative scarcity in the process. So even though in the long run they might not be the most popular languages, they are now!”

Sleeping giants

In February 2021 Tunga released a report: Best countries for sourcing provides solid statistics on software development in Africa, which provided insight into the top 17 African countries.

The research singled out frontrunner countries such as Mauritius and South Africa, which are attractive and safe choices, but “a bit more expensive.”

It also highlighted so-called sleeping giants like Nigeria and Egypt with their enormous population and large tech talent pools, and high English proficiency. Salary levels are moderate.

A statement from Tunga read: “There are also promising outsiders like Ghana, Senegal, Uganda, Rwanda and Cameroon, with all different backgrounds, from languages spoken (French in Senegal) to business climate (Excellent in Rwanda). Late-bloomers such as Ethiopia and Tanzania have a lot of unlocked potential but are fairly new to this market.”

According to Tunga’s Top 20 list: 6. C#; 7. Java; 8. Javascript; 9. C; 10. Bash/Shell/Powershell; 11. Scala; 12. PHP; 13. TypeScript; 14. HTML/CSS; 15. VBA; 16. Swift; 17. R; 18. Objective-C; 19. Go; and 20. Kotlin.

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