According to market experts and analysts, 2015 is going to be a very exciting year for telecoms and technology. With an increasingly competitive marketplace and increasing demand for the top talent across the sector, there has never been a better time for telecoms professionals to consider a change of roles.
Through market research and discussions with our clients, we have put together a list of what we expect from the telecoms market in 2015 and how we think this will affect recruitment within the sector.
2015 – An overview
- Having seen huge investment in network infrastructure over the past couple of years, monetising these networks and seeing a return on investment will be a top priority for operators in 2015.
- The advent of 4G and increasing volumes of content available on mobile devises will drive up data traffic, which will require networks capable of coping.
- 4K video will start to appear across all geographies, which will drive data consumption up even further and bolster operators’ bottom lines.
- Voice over Wi-Fi and VoLTE will gain momentum which will push operators to evolve new communications apps as native device capabilities and OTT service extensions.
- Market consolidation will continue. This will result in bundled services and quad-play services becoming ubiquitous in the marketplace.
- HD voice quality, which is already available in the Nordics, will become more prevalent across all markets.
- Operators will increasingly look to provide services to support the SME market including the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) trend. With AT&T and Verizon already aggressively pursuing this opportunity, it is expected that North America will be a market leader in this area in 2015.
- This year will see the release of the Apple Watch which is expected to bring the wearables market into the mainstream with over 44 million wearable devices expected to be sold in 2015.
- The Internet of Things (IoT) will continue to grow with more and more businesses investing in this lucrative area. Areas of interest currently include the smart home and smart security, though there is still work to do in making it a commercially viable offering.
- Development of 5G networks and setting of 5G standards will continue to be a big area of investment as operators look to beat competitors to faster network speeds.
- Operators will look to find a way of bringing NFV to market.
- There will be increased investment in R&D as companies look to move into new areas and new technologies.
- Operators will accelerate the integration of acquisitions into existing businesses to offer a single operating platform and customer experience.
- Customer experience management will become mainstream and an accepted part of everyday network operator investment.
These factors (and numerous others) will effect recruitment within the telecoms sector in 2015 and beyond. Below is a broad view of how we expect these factors to manifest in terms of telecoms recruitment and what employers and employees should keep in mind over the next twelve months.
Continued consolidation will mean increased project work
BT’s acquisition of EE has got a lot of the major European operators worried. The acquisition means that BT can now offer mobile, fixed line, broadband and TV services to their customers. Not only that, but the four business areas are all very well established, each with a customer base of their own. Whether the deal goes through or not, fears about losing market share to BT’s quad-play offering will drive continued consolidation in the marketplace.
As well as consolidation amongst major operators, tower networks are also being consolidated to allow those operators to offer customers coverage at a lower cost than building and maintaining their own network. In addition, organisations that would not normally be considered as operating within the telecoms market are forming strategic partnerships or being acquired so as to provide customers with more content and services through their connected devices.
As more mergers and acquisitions happen there will be an increase in demand for project workers with backgrounds in systems integration. A wide variety of roles will be available across all areas as organisations work to quickly and seamlessly integrate the new company into their existing business. A lot of work surrounding consolidation will be project or contract based work. Employees need to be open to the idea of working contract roles and the benefits this type of work offers. Employers on the other hand need to ensure that they treat contractors well, as if they were full time members of staff, so that they can attract and retain the best talent, even if it is on a contract basis.
Increased focus on content
Having set up their networks, operators are now shifting focus to offering customers greater quantity and higher quality of content. A large area of investment at the moment is video on demand (VoD). In addition, all manner of OTT services are being made available and ‘communication apps’ are becoming increasingly popular.
While there is increased focus on creating content, companies are also trying to react quickly to changes in the way we consume that content. The majority of content is now consumed via a mobile device and, with the release of the Apple Watch, 2015 will bring about yet another huge change to the way we consume content.
As more organisations focus on adding value to their customers by increasing their content production, we expect to see a significant increase in demand in this area. Roles involved in content creation and those involved in creating and managing the systems and processes that deliver this content, will be increasingly in demand. Individuals will be able to command higher salaries and will be able to hold out for roles that perfectly suit them as organisations clamour to attract the top talent.
Research and development hiring to increase
Operators are investing increasing amounts of money into improving their current offerings. This includes research into 5G, HD voice calls, higher quality video and higher specification hardware. In addition, research is being put into reimagining existing offerings in a way that will be attractive to end users including areas such as intelligent networks and next generation BSS.
Thanks to the Internet of Things (IoT), telecommunications and technology is moving into brand new areas. Finding an area of a customer’s everyday life where telecommunications companies can add value through new connected devices or networks will be a real boon for any company that can bring it to market first.
As the Internet of Things becomes more lucrative, the number of roles involved in research and development will increase. While this will offer more opportunities for those in research and development type roles, it will also force employers to consider how they can upskill the talent they have in place, with a view to moving them into these new areas.
Change in geographies
Up until very recently, the hubs for telecommunication roles were places like South Korea and Japan, with major headquarters in large American and European cities. Now however, things are different. More and more work is moving to Central and Eastern Europe where telecoms companies are looking to earn market shares in these growing markets. The telecoms market is also booming in India and the Middle East. One notable example is Huawei’s investment in Bahrain where the company is carrying out an ever-increasing level of operations.
While these new geographies do not detract from demand for professionals in other areas, it does offer telecoms professionals opportunities that they may not have had access to before. Now more than ever there is demand for professionals from established markets such as the UK, Germany, China and the US to move to and take roles in areas such as the Middle East and India where their skills and experience could make a real difference to an organisation.
Increase in recruitment activity
On the whole we expect to see hiring within the telecoms industry to increase dramatically over the next twelve months. The telecoms market is growing, and fast. Mobile technology now pervades almost every aspect of our daily lives and is set to continue growing with the future holding the promise of an ‘always connected’ seamless digital ecosystem. As more and more technological advancements are made, a constant supply of talent will be needed to devise how best to utilise these advancements and to implement them into current business models.
For individuals working in the telecoms sector this will mean a greater number of roles and organisations to choose from. They will be able to negotiate higher wages and better bonuses as the war for talent heats up. For organisations, the rewards on offer for gaining market share in this growing industry are clear. To achieve this however, organisations may need to reconsider their remuneration packages to ensure they are attracting the right employees. In addition, with competition for top talent increasing, organisations will need to ensure that their processes are aligned so as to make hiring decisions quickly enough so as not to miss out on opportunities.
We believe that 2015 will be a great year for recruitment in the telecoms sector. An increasing volume of available roles will mean that employees will be able to find roles that suit them, that meet their needs and that offer them the opportunity to take the next step in their careers. This has a knock on effect of giving organisations a better chance of finding people that have the exact skills and experience that they need. For those that get it right, a good employee attraction and retention strategy could result in hiring top talent which will give any company a real advantage in the marketplace.
Source: Vine 13