ICT consultancy, Ajilon, is aiming to boost its workforce by 400 people by the end of 2011 on the back of solid growth.
The traditionally low-key company, which has thousands of employees worldwide and maintains 600 in Australia across its Perth, Melbourne and Sydney locations, is also expanding its presence with new offices opened in South Australia and another planned for Brisbane in the coming weeks.
“We have some consultants on the ground in South Australia now and will have a couple up in Brisbane pretty soon,” managing director, Giles Nunis, said.
In spite of a flat market, Nunis claimed an increase in sales for the first half of the year was driving the expansion plans.
“We’ve chosen a very aggressive time to invest and I think it is a good time because next year is going to be a little different,” he said.
The move is the first time in 10 years Ajilon has attempted to broaden its reach beyond its existing markets, and follows on from ASX-listed integrator, CSG’s (ASX: CSV), decision to open up a new office facility in South Australia with plans to bring on 100 new staff.
“We are 600 strong in Australia and we anticipate we will be 1000-strong by the end of 2011,” Nunis said. “It’s quite a significant increase.”
However, with a skills shortage continuing to bite the ICT industry despite a sustained drop in the jobs market and the axing of hundreds of employees by multinational and local companies, Nunis took a cautious line on the firm’s ability to attract staff.
“It varies from state to state. In Western Australia there is still a skills shortage there,” he said. “We are the largest IT company in Perth with 350-odd. We struggle to get those people and bring them in from the east or get them from overseas and the 457 [visas] have been clamped down a bit so it has been a bit more difficult recently.”
Yet, with strong availability on the east coast and the backing of its parent company, global recruitment firm, Adecco, Nunis was confident of finding the right people.
The company’s website lists its in-depth skills areas as SAP, Microsoft, Java, Location Intelligence, Oracle, legacy systems and Siebel.