In addition to the standard development skills, backgrounds in security, using mobile as a platform and user interface development are in demand. Berridge noted that designing interfaces for business-to-business applications is particularly important as more companies develop mobile products for their staffs. Most mobile applications have focused on business-to-consumer use, and with a business application "it's really about knowing how to make a business user more productive."
More reliance on cloud and mobile technologies will create a need for staff who can integrate the two with other technologies, said David Boone, CEO of IT services company Paranet. Systems analysts, support specialists and workers who can examine a system and understand how it all works together will fill these roles, he said.
"As people are more removed from the application they're depending on, there's a greater need for support to make those things work," Boone said.
The buzz surrounding data analytics won't subside any time soon and companies will continue to need employees who can find business value in massive data stores. Data analyst ranked fourth in Dice.com's survey, appearing in the top five for the first time, said Hill, adding that the category grew 335 percent compared to last year.
At Bluewolf, Berridge has seen a consistent demand for business intelligence and database workers, but hasn't been asked for employees with big data backgrounds. Still, he won't rule out future needs in that regard.
"That may change as some of those big data products become more prevalent," he said. "There is certainly a lot of talk around big data."
Such products, according to Boone, will come via cloud computing, which allows data to flow freely and cheaply. This translates into a need for workers who can connect, study and move data. The need for data workers will be so acute that he recommends new IT workers consider careers in big data and forgo jobs supporting legacy software packages, like CRM (customer relationship management) systems.
"I'd focus on how do I become very adept at moving data around, how to organize databases, how to analyze and make sense of big data, and how to make data available on mobile devices."
Software support positions will decrease with more companies turning to SaaS models for application maintenance and customization, he said.
Berridge also sees IT departments needing more employees with specific backgrounds, with fewer support and maintenance positions as cloud vendors handle those tasks.