Portland Tech Community Reveals 2022 Plans: Bigger Budgets, Increased Headcount, and Higher Revenue, Says ProFocus Technology Trends Report

76% of Portland companies expect higher revenue and 61% expect increased tech budget this year, but finding talent is top challenge

PORTLAND, Ore.--()--The Portland tech community is growing and flourishing despite uncertainty and change, reveals ProFocus Technology’s Portland Tech in Focus: 2022 Trends Report. This year, 61% of Portland companies expect an increased technology budget (up from 36% in 2021) and 76% expect higher revenue. With 85% reporting upward wage pressure, 64% say there will be an increase in tech employee compensation this year, up from 41% in 2021.

The biggest struggle in 2022 for the Silicon Forest will be finding and securing the talent to support the planned growth. Sixty percent (60%) of firms say they will increase tech staff headcount, and 30% say they will increase the number of tech contractors. Yet they reported finding qualified talent as their biggest talent challenge (46%). More than half of all respondents (54%) say the IT talent shortage keeps their team from meeting key goals, an increase from 45% last year.

“The Portland tech community is moving forward at an incredible pace, but that pace is not sustainable without the talent to support it,” said John Boone, ProFocus Technology Founder and President. “Companies must change how they recruit and develop talent - it’s important to understand that candidates are looking for flexibility, career development, and better compensation. The companies that prioritize these offerings will secure the talent they need to fuel their aggressive 2022 plans.”

Remote is the preferred way to work
Only 4% of Portland’s tech workers are in the office full-time now, and just 4% say that’s their preferred setup. Sixty-eight percent (68%) say their preferred arrangement is remote with the option to go into the office as needed. Forty-three percent (43%) of employees say if required to be in the office full-time, they would likely leave their job.

Sixty percent (60%) agree that working remotely has made their team more productive. More than three times as many respondents agreed the shift to remote work makes it easier to recruit and retain talent than not. Fifty-nine percent (59%) agree it’s easier to recruit versus 16% who disagree and 53% say it's easier to retain versus 17% who disagree.

Compensation will rise
While 59% of the Portland tech community agree their company currently offers competitive compensation, 64% expect overall compensation for tech employees to rise in 2022. Upward wage pressure grew significantly year-over-year, with 85% of respondents now experiencing it, compared to 63% last year.

Upskilling is a priority
Retention strategies have changed amid post-pandemic shifts in employee priorities and the battle for talent. Sixty-two percent (62%) of companies have plans to upskill employees this year, with smaller firms* leading the way. Seventy-five percent (75%) of small firms plan to embrace this strategy, compared to 59% of enterprise firms. Midsize firms struggle the most in this area: 31% of them rank developing skills as their biggest talent-related challenge.

Portland’s tech community reports additional retention struggles, too. Just over half (54%) say their company onboards effectively and under half (45%) agree it offers a clear career path.

More than half feel overworked
Portland firms get high ranks for supporting employees’ physical and mental health: 89% say their company supports their physical health, and 84% say their company supports their mental health and well-being. That said, 46% report they are burned out.

More than half (53%) feel their teams are overworked, just slightly down from last year at 58%. When broken down by company size, small and midsize firms are doing better in this area: 45% of small and 47% of midsize company employees agree their teams are overworked, compared to 63% of large and 56% of enterprise firms who say the same.

Committed to DEI, but more to be done
Company culture has arguably been under more scrutiny these last 12 months than ever before. Overall, more than three-quarters (78%) of Portland’s tech professionals say their firm builds and maintains a positive culture. However, these ratings vary significantly across gender and racial parameters: 67% of female, non-binary and genderqueer respondents indicate a positive culture, compared to 82% of men. And 70% of people of color say they have a positive culture, compared to 81% of white respondents.

Seventy percent (70%) of Portland tech companies are investing in formal diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) programs, but enterprise firms are almost twice as likely as small firms to invest, 88% vs. 47%, respectively.

Respondents indicate the top three DEI programs in place are (1) affinity groups, diversity committees, or mentorship programs; (2) diverse interview panels; and (3) talent acquisition strategies for non-traditional candidates.

About the survey
ProFocus Technology’s Portland Tech in Focus: 2022 Trends Report is based on 173 responses via an online survey of Portland technology professionals, including executives, managers, directors, team leads, and individual contributors in companies from small enterprises with less than 100 employees to large enterprises with greater than 5,000 employees. The survey was conducted between October 24 and November 23, 2021. Click here for the full report.

*Small firms are defined as 1-100 employees, midsize 101-500, large 501-5,000, and enterprise greater than 5,000.

About ProFocus Technology
Built on decades of experience, ProFocus Technology is an award-winning technology staffing and consulting company specializing in delivering first class talent for key roles in development, deployment, and maintenance of software and infrastructure. With a fill ratio nearly double the industry average, ProFocus carefully places tech talent for companies ranging from small businesses to large enterprise organizations.

ProFocus Technology earned ClearlyRated’s Best of Staffing Diamond Awards for both Client and Talent satisfaction six years running. The company has landed on the Portland Business Journal’s Largest Staffing Firms list, was awarded the 2021 TechServe Excellence Award, and earned a spot on Oregon Business’ 100 Best Companies to Work For in Oregon list and PBJ’s Healthiest Employers of Oregon. ProFocus is a community partner, making connections to fuel Portland’s local economy and support local businesses.


Ann Warren

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Portland Tech Community Plans for Increased Budgets, Headcount, and Revenue, but Finding Talent is Top Challenge, Reveals ProFocus Technology Survey

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Ann Warren