Those on the contractor payroll in the IT skills market could be in for a bumper year in 2011, if a new study from the Centre for Economics and Business Research (cebr) proves accurate.

According to the research, well over 90,000 new employment openings will be created between 2011 and 2015 in the IT services sector, news which should bring some seasonal cheer to professionals in the IT contracting community. Not to put too fine a point on it, cebr predicts that the IT sector will be the “stellar performer” as far as forthcoming job creation is concerned.

More precisely, cebr’s research has uncovered trends which will result in an annual growth rate of 5.1 per cent up to 2015, a development which will bring in its wake 93,000 new jobs if it comes to fruition. Commenting on the study, cebr’s chief executive, Douglas McWilliams, said that for many other areas of the business services community, the outlook is still bleak. But if the government and the private sector both choose to make more use of external procurement, prospects for growth may improve. By adopting this approach, projects can be completed with none of the additional long term costs associated with hiring permanent staff. Clearly, IT professionals working for umbrella companies and limited companies could be the principal beneficiaries of such a strategy.

The findings are in line with the recent “UK IT Service Provider Performance Study” for 2010 conducted by EquaTerra, which indicated that outsourcing may be increased by as many as 61 per cent of British firms in the near future.

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