Canadian CIOs have people with Internet/intranet development skills are at the top of their shopping list.

That was the conclusion of a RHI Consulting‘s Hot Jobs Report released Thursday. Web development skills was identified

by 20 per cent of respondents, networking finished second with 15 per cent and help desk/end-user support came third with 14 per cent. RHI interviewed 270 CIOs for the report.

Howard Hess of Toronto-based Hess Associates Executive Search, a high-tech recruiting firm, says the results are in line with his view of the landscape.

“”Web applications are still a big area where more and more jobs will be developing,”” Hess says. “”So as the mainframe becomes less and less important, except for some of the big companies, it’s becoming more of a Web-based world.””

Hess says he was not surprised by the top three finishers because they are linked.

“”The Web-based applications are driving all the openings these CIOs are seeing because if the Web applications aren’t expanding, the network wouldn’t be expanding and the help desk wouldn’t be expanding,”” he says. “”You can put it under one big umbrella rather than saying these are three separate areas.””

The need for employees with particular skills is one thing, whether companies are hiring is another. Hess says the job market is flat, but given the current climate it’s a near-enviable position. There will be hiring, however, at all levels of government. Hess says the public sector is trying to become more efficient. “”How do you become more efficient? More (Web) applications.

“”I’m not saying government hiring is on a growth curve, but it certainly hasn’t leveled off the way the private industry has.””

In terms of percentage of answers, networking wasn’t the true silver medallist. That distinction belongs to “”I don’t know,”” which rang up 16 per cent of the vote. Hess says he isn’t concerned about 42 CIO didn’t know what job skills were needed most. At large companies like Bell Canada, he reasons, CIOs aren’t on-the-front-line types and will be more concerned with the budget and hiring and dealing with the people who would know such things.

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