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Trends in the Access Job Market

Updated: Sep 13, 2023

The market situation of Access developers is primarily characterized by a lack of data. I don't know of any useful figures or statistic. Therefore, this remains my individual view.

Through my Access conferences and many other activities, I am one of the people with the most contacts and personal acquaintances with Access developers worldwide. I have more than 1000 active colleagues in my conference contact lists and meet hundreds in person and online every year. So I talk with many people and have been getting a lot of inquiries from both, the demand side and the supply side of the market for decades (see below). So my individual view is at least relatively broad.

1. Demand Side

1.1 Clearly decreasing demand, i.e. continuously fewer companies and organizations looking for Access work and developers. The many reasons for this are beyond the scope of this article.

1.2 Due to the mass distribution of Access from the smallest companies to still very many large corporations and organizations, there is still a degree of demand, even if it is significantly reduced compared to earlier decades.

1.3 The demanders often have problems to find qualified Access developers. For reasons see 2.3.

2. Supply Side

2.1 Clearly decreasing supply, i.e. fewer qualified Access developers looking for a permanent job or freelance work.

2.2 Due to the mass distribution of Access and its good suitability for individual developers, there are still relatively many dedicated or professional Access developers on the market, even if significantly fewer than in earlier decades.

2.3 Some reasons for the decreasing supply from the perspective of age (ORDER BY ASC):

There is almost no young blood, because students and young people have had no contact with Access for many years.

Many former Access developers have left Access due to more modern techniques and/or lack of demand and are therefore no longer available on the market.

A large and always increasing number of Access developers have retired or disappeared into ~Nirvana~ and are therefore no longer available here on earth.

2.4. Those who are available often have trouble still finding offers, jobs and contracts.

3. Conclusion and Personal Consequences

An old problem is that there were and are hardly any marketplaces, job boards, not even otherwise omnipresent agents that prominently seek or display Access skills. Of course, that didn't get any better with the reduction of both market sides.

All of this leads to the situation that in a reduced market, it becomes increasingly difficult for both sides to find each other.

On not so few occasions in recent years, I already had the impression of the Cobol effect: Old, still relevant technology, mastered by fewer and fewer developers, which thus become more and more valuable. By the way, I have increased my hourly rates. ;-)

I recently decided to better organize and publicize my 20+ year, small intermediary role in the Access job market in the German-speaking countries (about 1200 job offer/inquiry emails in my archive, two developer associations founded, countless job walls at conferences, a job web forum, etc.), and will present a talk and offer on this at the upcoming German Access developer conference AEK. I won't get rich by this - as I haven't by mediating and passing on inquiries so far - but perhaps I'll make a small contribution to improving the situation in my home market.

How do you see the Access job situation in your home market? Leave a comment.

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