Brian Blum
July 21, 2022

It’s called the Great Resignation and the worldwide trend has not spared Israel.

In the few years since Covid-19 disrupted the world economy, workers in fields of all types have been reconsidering whether they’re doing what they really want to do. For most, the Great Resignation represents an opportunity to migrate between industries.

That’s led to both risks and opportunities for Israel’s high-tech industry, according to a new report from the Start-Up Nation Policy Institute and the Israel Innovation Authority.

The joint “Human Capital in Tech 2021-2022” study shows that, between March and May 2022, Israeli companies reported around 33,000 open jobs in high-tech, nearly double the number from before the pandemic.

“The shockwaves going through the Israeli and global economy affect recruitment, but they don’t reduce the need for increased technologically competent manpower in all branches of the economy and the public sector,” says Dror Bin, CEO of the Israel Innovation Authority.

But there’s good news, too. The Great Resignation creates “new employment opportunities for workers in non-technological positions in Israeli growth companies and in general,” Bin says.

Bin’s analysis can be seen most directly in the 250% increase in job openings for non-technological positions in Israeli high-tech.

Where should workers – tech trained or otherwise – be looking for the best jobs? Growth companies (defined as those that are expanding rapidly compared with others in the same field) are leading the way, with a 30% increase in their number of employees.

The demand for workers at these high-tech growth companies should be encouraging for Israel’s underrepresented populations – women, Israel Arabs and the ultra-Orthodox – providing them with more opportunities for entry into the lucrative tech space.

And, indeed, the report found that more than half of the new positions within the industry have been filled by workers from outside the sector.

Here are some of the key findings from the report.

  • Eighty percent of workers in primarily technological positions have academic (higher education) training.
  • The majority of jobs in the tech industry are still technological in nature: 69% of employees are in tech positions, 13% in business development, 12% in operations and 5% in executive roles.
  • Of those in tech positions, a third are programmers. Of those in non-tech positions, around 50% work in sales, operations and marketing.
  • Just 17% of R&D positions are filled by women. The smaller the company, the lower the percentage of women. However, life sciences companies, along with firms that have achieved more than 20% growth in their staffing, have the highest percentage of female employees. And the more women in a company, the lower the turnover.
  • On the other hand, life sciences companies had the toughest time landing staff with a 66% successful recruitment rate compared with more than 90% in other sectors of high tech.
  • In the second half of 2021, more than 10% of tech workers chose to leave the company in which they worked.
  • Israeli-headquartered growth companies hired more non-tech roles – 35% of workers – compared with 20% at the R&D centers of international companies operating in Israel.
  • Of the 33,000 open positions in the Israeli tech industry, 12,000 of those vacancies were for non-tech positions. That’s up from less than 5,000 in previous annual reports from the Israel Innovation Authority and Start-Up Nation Central.
  • The war in Ukraine has had a negative impact on Israeli high-tech: Around half of all Israeli tech companies offshore some of their work, with Ukraine accounting for 20% of that total.

“Even if the peak the tech industry experienced in 2021 is behind us, the long-term trend of increased demand for skilled workers in innovation industries is not likely to change in the foreseeable future,” said Uri Gabai, CEO of the Start-Up Nation Policy Institute.

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