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Huge increase in demand for helpdesk staff

IT project managers are also highly sought after, according to a recent report that found a marked increase in demand compared to the same period last year

There has been a massive increase in helpdesk support staff and IT project managers over the past year.

Demand for junior and graduate entry-level helpdesk positions has increased by 45 percent compared to the same period last year, according to the latest skills report from online recruitment company The IT Job Board.

The report also found a 35 percent increase in demand for IT project managers over the past year.

Adam Stokes, operations manager at The IT Job Board, said this increase is more likely to be due to the regular upgrade cycle for ageing IT systems rather than growth in the number of new IT projects businesses are planning.

He said in a statement: "In the last year we've had new versions of Microsoft Windows and Oracle being released, which could have resulted in support for their older versions being discontinued. This naturally leads to a number of upgrade projects being commissioned at the same time, which may have a bearing on the figures."

There is also still strong demand for ERP and CRM skills.

Stokes said: "There still seems to be a high demand for these applications, and the combination of continued demand plus the lengthy implementation schedules mean there's a real shortage of candidates with these skills in the market."

Developer positions, however, increased only slightly at 10 percent compared to the same period last year.