Main image of article 12 Hardest-to-Fill Tech Roles Include Full-Stack Developer

Employers have a difficult time filling certain roles. That’s aggravating for companies but potentially a good thing for job candidates with the right mix of skills and experience, as it gives the latter more leverage when negotiating salary, perks, and more.

According to HackerEarth’s latest State of the Developer Ecosystem report, drawn from “thousands” of responses from developers, hiring managers, and tech recruiters, some of the hardest tech roles to fill include full-stack developer, machine learning and blockchain experts, and data scientists. Take a look at the full chart:

HackerEarth’s data aligns somewhat with that presented by Hired’s recent State of Software Engineers 2023 report, which put back-end engineers at the top of the difficult-to-hire list, followed by engineering managers and full-stack engineers. However, Hired’s list put machine learning and blockchain skills a bit further down. (You can potentially cite differences in sample sizes and methodologies for that gap.)

Why are employers having a hard time hiring engineers and developers with full-stack, front- and back-end skills? The reason is pretty simple: these jobs are enormously complicated, and it often takes years to learn not only the tools and skills involved, but also the underlying best practices.

For example, a full-stack developer or engineer is in charge of both the user-facing and backend portions of a website or service; as a result, they must know a number of programming languages (HTML, CSS, SQL, Python) plus web services, API architectures, and more. It’s a similar story with specializations such as machine learning or blockchain, which demand any practitioner master domain-specific tools and methodologies.

As more companies embrace everything from the cloud to data science, demand for these specialized technologists will only increase. Full-, back- and front-end developers are likely to see sustained hunger for their services, as well. For those with the right skills and experience, that can translate into compensation premiums—so long as you negotiate effectively.