Fastest Growing IT Jobs Q4 2011

The Freelancer Fast 50 charts the top 50 rising job categories in the online labor market quarter by quarter. By comparing jobs posted on in Q1 2010 to those posted in Q2, the site is able to give an accurate assessment of the most in demand skills in online outsourcing.


The past quarter has been a busy one, with the advent of the iPad signaling a new age in mobile devices, the Apple vs. Adobe issue and the crossover of social networking and geolocation dominating the tech headlines. "Be it new products, new technology or new ways of doing business, whenever we have a lot happening in the tech world we always see it reflected in the job numbers," said Matt Barrie.


The continued rapid advancement of mobile phone development and the ever growing popularity of cloud computing have also been on everyone's mind. Cloud computing has become so popular even the US government is getting in on the act claiming they can save 25% to 50% of their IT costs by moving to cloud computing, according to the Brookings Institute.


"What we see time and again is that no matter what the hot tech trend of the day is, ultimately it's the online worker that benefits," stated Barrie. "The new global freelance workforce by necessity is incredibly flexible. The combination of seamless adaptability to employers' needs coupled with incredibly low pricing makes this new breed of liquid labor unstoppable. Any job you can possibly think of can now be outsourced online. For the first time, small businesses can outsource projects as little as $30, and have delivered roughly the equivalent of $300 of western world labour," Barrie continued.



Top 4 Trends from the Report

Location Wars: Geolocation grabbed the number one spot this quarter as the location wars heated up. While Foursquare and Twitter battled it out, freelance workers reaped the benefits seeing a whopping 909% increase in geolocation jobs online.


The Apple Effect: 26% of all web video is available using HTML5 (The Register) and this number is only going to increase as Steve Jobs famously gave Flash the cold shoulder with the release of the iPad and new iPhone. This endorsement gave HTML5 the shot in the arm it needed and lead to a massive 721% boost in HTML5 jobs.


Head in the Clouds: Amazon Web Services came in as the number three fastest mover in Q3, denoting the continued popularity of cloud computing. Up 446% from the previous quarter, anything related to hosting services over the Internet has seen an impressive increase.


Appetite for Apps: The global appetite for apps continued unabated as mobile phone jobs rose steadily, up 282% from Q2. Having an app has become an essential tool for any business and SMEs are increasingly looking to online labor to get their apps build more cost effectively. 


According to the report, software development jobs are up overall.  The fourth quarter saw a strong increase in applications developed in C++, which were up 38 percent, to 2,214. Java was up 36 percent, to 2,513; C language development was up 27 percent, to 1,953; .NET development also rose, up 27 percent, to 346; and C# was up 20 percent, to 2,124. 


PHP still leads the Web as the scripting language of choice and was up 13 percent, to 28,872 online projects. 


The outsourcing marketplace enables businesses to connect with more than 3 million independent professionals globally. Employers can hire freelancers in areas such as software, writing, data entry and design, engineering and the sciences, sales and marketing, accounting and legal services. 


The average job for the freelance employee is less than $200, making cost-effective for small businesses, which often need a wide variety of jobs to be done, but cannot justify the expense of hiring full time.


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James Finnan has been covering financial markets for 10 years. He has served as Editor in Chief of since 2010. Additionally he has been a contributing writer to the My Media network of sites including,, and