Let’s do IT in the UK
by Matthew Mower, sourcingfocus.com
Education in IT has become a recurrent news item in the UK. Plans to reform the curriculum, which Education Secretary Michael Gove described as “dull and demotivating”, are already in place, with a new regime set to start in September 2014. With only 0.5% of all A-Level students taking the course in 2011 it is clear that something needs to be done, but why is it so important that we have an IT industry in the UK?
The benefits of having a succesful IT industry are untold. Perhaps most obvious are the general logistical advantages for UK businesses. For instance, outsourcing onshore will mean that there are no time differences, which can lead to breakdown in communications. The geographical proximity of supplier and user also mean that the potential for face to face contact on a regular basis is far greater. This is an advantage that should not be overlooked, as parties involved then have the capability to hold both informal and formal conversations and is a good way to build raport and gauge if the cultural fit of the organisation is still intact.
Apart from these clear benefits, the economic advantages are huge. IT dominates the outsourcing market, holding 28% of the market share in an industry that is valued at around $20 billion. If UK businesses could become genuine competitors for all IT contracts on a global scale, the financial advantages for the UK would be tremendous.
More IT businesses in the UK would also lead to an increase in standards domestically, as competition would drive up service levels and prices down. It would also encourage innovation as more businesses look to distinguish themselves from the crowd.
It soon becomes evident then that all should be done to ensure that the UK has an IT industry that positions itself as competitors on a global scale.