PAYE umbrella techies earning their daily bread through IT contracting may be interested in the latest trends in the IT skills market as recorded by Freelancer.com’s Fast 50 (a quarterly list of the 50 fastest growing IT jobs) for the last three months of 2011.

HTML5 jobs soared by 41% on the previous quarter, hitting 1,585 postings on the popular crowdsourcing and outsourcing site. In comparison, Adobe’s Flash yielded more jobs (2,995) but grew by a relatively feeble 6%. Freelancer.com believes that, by mid-2012, HTML5 will have overtaken Flash if this trend continues.

Software development roles in general were up substantially on Q3, with applications developed for C++ surging by 38% to 2,214, Java leaping by 36% to 2,513, and C language jobs rising by 27% to 2,124. PHP, however, still dominates the Web, with 28,872 projects (a growth of 13%).

Although its performance during Q3 was a little lacklustre, mobile platform Android saw a healthy rise of 33% in Q4; Freelancer.com thinks it’s set to overtake the Apple iPhone by the end of this year vis-à-vis the rate of development of applications. By comparison, Symbian and Windows applications barely registered in the data.

Overall, the last quarter of 2011 saw a rise of 33% in the number of IT roles on offer, bounding up from 114,000 jobs in Q3 to 134,820.

Commenting on the data, Freleancer.com CEO Matt Barrie said “The sophistication and nature of jobs continues to amaze us as we see jobs outsourced in areas as diverse as astrophysics, genetic engineering and industrial design.”

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