Montreal has been lucky in many ways in regards to the pandemic. Curfews, social distancing, and non-essential business issues aside, the IT industry was not hit as hard as other cities across Canada. Our clients’ overall quick shift to working from home, the growth of new technology and services as a result, and the constant need for talent to keep on top of a competitive (if somewhat smaller) market has all helped keep this melting pot of a city afloat during hard times. Naturally, some IT sectors have still struggled, but there seems to be a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel now as companies and government bodies are finally getting confident enough to fund new projects and expand.
IT still encompasses about 10% of all jobs in the Greater Montreal Area (which includes areas both on and off Island) – so it is no surprise that the industry has been quick to catch up after the initial COVID shock. Clients in the Telecommunications, Banking and Software Development industries continue to see growth spurts, whereas Aerospace, Transportation and Digital Marketing clients are finally coming back after a few months of slowing down. On the same note, the federal government, in a plan to boost the economy, has been providing funding to SMEs and start-ups since the beginning of 2021. Obviously, the number of new jobs is not the same as pre-pandemic days, but the fact that it did not plummet and has been relatively steady for the last 6 months is a great sign.
So, what roles are we mainly seeing in Montreal these days? The list is not too surprising, considering how COVID has been reshaping the market, but I can gladly say that more can be added to this list almost monthly: Security Analysts/Cyber Security, Java and Front-End Developers, Technical Support Specialists, Cloud Engineers/Architects, DevOps Engineers, Manual and Automation Quality Assurance Analysts and Project Managers.
Quick Market Tips: Most positions are still 100% remote, but many clients are building return-to-work plans that – depending on the vaccine rollouts – might come into effect as soon as late summer/early fall. Many positions in the private sector are hiring quite quickly due to focused growth, so do not be surprised with tight turnarounds. However, due to the uncertainties of the pandemic, clients are still not as flexible when it comes to rates/salaries as before.