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UK economy being driven by IT despite existing skill gaps remaining

Thursday, September 12, 2013

A new report has revealed that the UK digital sector while boosting the UK economy is being hampered by continuing skill gaps in the industry.

A new report entitled Technology and Skills in the Digital Industries” UK Commission for Employment and Skills reveals that the potential of the digital sector to boost economic growth is being restricted by a lack of skills.

The report predicts that over the next ten years, IT specialists are expected to turn the digital sector into a heavyweight element of the UK economy, as cyber security, mobile technologies, Green IT and cloud computing change the way businesses and individuals use technology.  The demand for new products, applications and mobile devices providing information securely, in ‘real time’ and in an energy efficient way are crucial for business growth.

The digital sector will require nearly 300,000 new recruits by 2020 to maximise its full potential. New roles will be created that will require both deeper and more specialised technical IT skills, complemented by business, sales and communications skills.  But at present, a lack of specialist technical skills are hampering growth in the sector. Nearly one fifth of all vacancies are difficult to fill due to skills shortages, making it harder for digital companies to keep a pace with technological change.

Rachel Pinto, research manager at UKCES, said: “To make sure the digital sector really thrives, there’s a clear need for employers to take ownership of the skills agenda and play an active role in training the next generation of IT specialists.”

  Microsoft backs $5 billion visa plan to combat skill shortages and Prince’s Trust promote IT skills

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