Silver linings... except there aren't enough people with the skills to take these jobs.

A war for talent is raging in Silicon Valley where internet companies, from big groups such as Google down to the smallest start-up, are scrambling to find the best technology specialists, sending ripples to labour markets from London to Bangalore.

Large California-based companies are raising salaries and bonuses to prevent seasoned employees from defecting to a competitor, while compensation for junior engineers just leaving university has gone up 30-50 per cent in the last year, according to several industry insiders.

Microsoft in April announced a pay rise for its 90,000 employees. That followed Google raising salaries by 10 per cent at the end of last year to prevent a loss of talent to other Silicon Valley companies such as Facebook.

“The competitive intensity is extremely high, and the best people, in many cases, are getting multiple offers, multiple counteroffers,” says Jim Breyer, an investor at Accel Partners, who leads recruiting efforts for companies the firm invests in. “Each week, by phone, e-mail, or in person, I interview 10 young technologists, executives, or potential leaders for our portfolio companies.”