As a result of the introduction and evolution of digital technologies in almost every aspect of our lives, IT technologies have entered a new phase of growth which is continuous and rapid. This growth has intensified the need for a workforce with IT knowledge and skills i.e. a workforce competent in leading edge ICT technologies such as BigData, Internet of Things, Cloud Computing, Artificial Intelligence and Cyber-security. As a consequence of this demand, there is a significant talent gap in these technologies. In a recent survey by MIT’s Sloan school of management, 40% of the participating enterprises declared that they were struggling to attract and retain talented professionals in the areas of BigData and data analytics. Likewise, the International Data Corporation (IDC) has recently predicted that by 2018 there will be a need for over 180.000 people with deep analytical skills, as well as a need for over 1 million workers with data management and data science capabilities.
This talent gap is one of the most significant barrier against using the various IT technologies in our lives to the full potential. It’s therefore important to take steps that will help close this gap. Remedial actions can be primarily taken by enterprises and yet governments could substantially help the process by establishing proper policies. In the quest for proper policies that could alleviate the IT talent shortage both governments and enterprises need start by understanding the trends in the job market.
The IT related segment of the job market is driven by the following trends:
Enterprises should invest in new processes for attracting, retaining and developing talented workers that will help them succeed in the digital era. To this end, the following best practices are suggested:
Government policies about alleviating the IT talent gap should go hand-in-hand with the efforts of enterprises. In particular, these policies should focus on:
The IT skills gap is a thorny issue, which can hardly be solved in a few years. However, if enterprises, governments and citizens cooperate and work towards alleviating this talent shortage, the IT industry will feel a positive impact and will reach new heights of growth and innovation by leveraging the IT talent at its disposal.
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