UK businesses face IT skill shortages

New research from CompTIA shows technology is 'key to success'
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New research from channel organisation CompTIA has highlighted how British businesses rely on IT, but are suffering from gaps in skills.

CompTIA’s International Technology Adoption & Workforce Issues study is based on a survey of more than 1,250 business and IT executives in countries around the world, including the UK.

Nearly 80 per cent of UK businesses surveyed say that technology is key to their success, with 62 per cent planning to increase their spend in IT over the next year. But 85 per cent are still suffering from gaps in IT skills in their organisations, despite 86 per cent investing in IT training in the past year.

UK executives say they will rely on technology to help them achieve key strategic business priorities, including reaching new customers; reducing costs and overhead; and improving staff productivity and capabilities. Their top technology priorities in the next 12 months include:

·Cybersecurity

·Data storage and back-up

·Web presence, including e-commerce

·Network infrastructure

·Mobility (devices, apps)

·Collaboration (video conferencing)

“Emerging technologies such as cloud computing continue to see adoption gains as well,” noted Tim Herbert, vice president, research, CompTIA. “Among UK businesses, 56 percent say they are either experimenting with or fully using cloud computing solutions.” 

Greater reliance on technology may prompt many businesses to increase their IT staff over the next 12 months. Yet IT skills gaps remain a challenge. Among UK executives, 85 percent of indicate at least some degree of gaps in IT skills in their organisation.

“In many cases skills gaps are a natural part of the IT industry due to the speed of innovation,” said John McGlinchey, vice president, Europe and Middle East, CompTIA. “The demand for new technologies can get ahead of the supply of workers who are well trained and credentialed in those areas.”

Workers and companies in the UK are responding to the need for more skills, as 86 percent of businesses engaged in some type of IT training during the past 12 months.

Business tablet image from Shutterstock

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