Tech talent market remains competitive as finance sector sees surge in applicants

A diverse group of businesspeople shake hands in a boardroom
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The tech talent pool remains competitive and the finance industry is keen to poach tech workers that have been left without a job amid a doubling of industry-wide layoffs in the US.

John Talarico, global head of talent acquisition at Millennium Management - a major US investment management firm - said it has seen a surge in applications from tech workers during the second half of the year.

Like most other modern industries, the finance sector is underpinned by technology and Talarico said a huge number of engineering roles remain open for intelligent problem-solvers, in an interview with Bloomberg TV.

Tech firms have seen an increase in layoffs in the second half of 2022. There were around 59,000 tech layoffs in November 2022, a figure up from 23,000 in October and 10,000 in September, according to Bloomberg's data.

In 25 years of running technology acquisition programmes, Talarico said he has only seen a few market disruptions like the one that it’s going through currently.

Millenium has managed to hire 294 technologists this year and still has plenty of openings on the company’s career site. “It’s December 15 and my team is working on over 100 open positions, my team is not getting a break,” he said.

The firm is currently recruiting across all levels, from those beginning their career to senior global positions. It’s also across a range of competencies, from software or full-stack engineering, to security or cloud engineering.

In contrast to the private sector, Bloomberg data also highlighted that the government is struggling to attract tech employees, with part of the reason down to the salary it offers. The average private sector tech pays $109,400, big tech offers $138,800, while the federal government can only afford an average of $80,900.

Financial firms aren’t the only companies looking to poach tech talent, as small businesses were described as being in an unprecedented position by recruiting company Randstad in September 2022.

It said that employers in small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) could use the current period to its advantage, with the ongoing cost of living crisis and tech companies facing a downturn. With bigger companies cutting back, smaller ones could hire strategically while the market is down, leading to important gains.

Zach Marzouk

Zach Marzouk is a former ITPro, CloudPro, and ChannelPro staff writer, covering topics like security, privacy, worker rights, and startups, primarily in the Asia Pacific and the US regions. Zach joined ITPro in 2017 where he was introduced to the world of B2B technology as a junior staff writer, before he returned to Argentina in 2018, working in communications and as a copywriter. In 2021, he made his way back to ITPro as a staff writer during the pandemic, before joining the world of freelance in 2022.