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Upwork’s 10 most in-demand tech skills in 2020 revealed

26 Nov 2020

The freelance platform has named web design, web development and a range of coding languages among its top tech skills for the past year.

Freelancing platform Upwork has named JavaScript, PHP and Python among its top 10 sought-after tech skills for 2020. Demand for programming and web development expertise is still growing, the company said, particularly as Covid-19 continues to impact digital transformation.

According to Upwork, businesses are finding it hard to source and retain talent with the right skills. In an Upwork survey of more than 1,500 hiring managers earlier this year, half said they had plans to recruit freelance web, mobile and software developers over the next six months.

Upwork’s top 10 tech skills in 2020

So, if you’re looking at career goals and areas to upskill in 2021, it could be worth considering which tech skills employers were keen on this year. Upwork’s ranking is based on the volume of services listed on its site linked to each skill between April and September. During this time, each of the top 10 skills were used for a minimum of 500 projects.

The top tech skills for 2020 were: JavaScript, CSS, HTML, website development, PHP, API development, WordPress, HTML5, web design and Python.

Upwork also announced the highest-paying programming languages on listed its site earlier this year. They included Objective-C, Golang, Windows PowerShell, Excel VBA and Kotlin.

Mike Paylor, vice-president of engineering and product at Upwork, highlighted the need for companies to adapt to keep up with the rapid pace of technology.

“This means building a virtual talent bench that can contribute diverse skills and deep knowledge to solving highly technical problems,” he said.

“From JavaScript and Python to HTML, these highly sought-after skills also show there is opportunity for independent talent to grow their businesses and build valuable relationships with high-quality clients from around the world.”

Infographic showing Upwork’s most in-demand tech skills and hiring trends in 2020.

Click to enlarge. Infographic: Upwork

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Lisa Ardill
By Lisa Ardill

Lisa Ardill joined Silicon Republic as senior careers reporter in July 2019. She has a BA in neuroscience and a master’s degree in science communication. She is also a semi-published poet and a big fan of doggos. Lisa briefly served as Careers Editor at Silicon Republic before leaving the company in June 2021.

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