Seventy-one percent of technology firms are planning to increase staff pay this year, according to the latest Barclays Employers Survey.

As a further sign of confidence in the sector, 65 percent of respondents in the tech sector said that wage pressure from employees was not an issue. However, 20 percent still said it was a concern to some extent, while 16 percent said it was a major concern.

Sam Kemp, corporate director in the technology, media and telecoms (TMT) team at Barclays, said: "This is a very optimistic sentiment and a shift from the wage freeze environment of the last few years, which can only be a positive for employee morale.

Barclays surveyed 684 UK businesses across all sectors. Tech firms were the third most positive in terms of wage increases, behind the travel sector (72 percent) and telecoms (77 percent). Technology firms were significantly more positive than the cross-industry average of 57 percent who said they plan to increase wages next year, with 39 percent planning to do so for all staff.

The government has been keen to encourage the creation of apprenticeships in the tech industry, as a way to fill the skills gap. The survey indicates that the message may be getting through, as it revealed a rise in the employment of apprentices, with 34 percent (up from 30 percent in 2012) of tech firms taking them on in 2013, and 40 percent planning to hire them this year, more than any other sector.

"Many technology companies are thriving, with ambitious growth plans and we continue to see this sector as central to the recovery and growth of UK PLC," Kemp said.

Kemp continued: "Many technology companies are thriving, with ambitious growth plans and we continue to see this sector as central to the recovery and growth of UK PLC."

A wide range of businesses were surveyed, from small ones with turnover of less than £5 million to larger ones with turnover of more than £500 million.