Canberra Technology Sales Market Update

Although challenging client engagement conditions, vendors and systems integrators are generally remaining optimistic throughout the early stages of this pandemic. The need to stay close to customers, be there for them, and play a key role in assisting them navigate the unexpected challenges of COVID-19, is crucial at the moment. In some ways, consultative Account Executives with strong networks across Federal Government will be more important than ever.

The reality is that most ICT sales professionals in Canberra have been operating in a fairly favourable market for many years. It is not uncommon for me to hear from my vendor clients that the Fed Gov territory contributes between 35 – 50% of their overall ANZ revenue. It could be said that a lot of the reps in town are ‘fair weather sailors’ and that they’ll have to step up their game to remain successful in what will be a tougher market.

Thankfully we’re in technology though and not experiencing the horrible carnage that many other sectors are at present. Over the past few weeks many government departments have come to a very sudden realisation that the need to be progressive with their technology strategy is paramount, particularly with cloud, security and end user computing. I’ve had vendors that are operating in those areas tell me that their phones have been ringing off the hook over the past few weeks. Some departments have been caught stuck in the mud, generally the larger and slower moving departments, still using physical tokens for remote access etc. Small to mid-sized departments have reacted quickly and swiftly mobilised their workforce, partly due to the fact they’re smaller and its easier, but largely due them often being more at the cusp of new tech.

Systems Integrators with strong existing managed services businesses seem to be doing well at the moment, with many opportunities to sell out of scope services.

As I said earlier, overall the market sentiment has been positive and pragmatic, however I have seen some software vendor clients slow their recruitment processes and in one case put a global hold on current requirements. In a market like this, candidates are more reluctant to move unless there are strong pull and push factors, making a candidate short market even tighter. Hiring managers are less likely to compromise on their wish lists when making hiring decisions and will only look to hire candidates that land completely on the spot.

Organisations that are brave and long term focused may have opportunities to gain more market share and pick up strong sales talent. Candidates want to see strong executive sponsorship and commitment to Canberra from HQ.

If you’re at all in the market to hire, or considering your own career options, please get in touch for a virtual coffee and chat about what’s happening across town.