Shortage of basic tech skills delaying digital transformation
One in three UK firms are blaming a lack of basic skills and legacy IT systems for delaying their digital transformation efforts.
According to research by digital transformation solutions firm UST, which surveyed 200 senior decision makers, digital transformation is not scaling as hoped and almost half (45%) said that the government needs to give more incentives to entice businesses to invest in Research and Development.
The study found that businesses are keen to take on emerging technologies, with 41% rating building resilience to cope with future disruption as top of the list of benefits digital transformation could provide.
Plus, 40% of the respondents said that lowering costs and increasing profitability were a key benefit of digital technologies, as well as improving on sustainability.
Most of those surveyed perceived cloud computing as the most important technology (75%) for successful digital transformation, followed by artificial intelligence and machine learning (67%).
“Our research highlights the need for companies to continue investing in digital transformation efforts,” said Praveen Prabhakaran, chief delivery officer and UK managing director at UST.
“Investing in technology capabilities is also vital for improving sustainability which is particularly important given the pressure many companies are under to meet net zero targets,” added Prabhakaran.
To improve on digital skills, 44% of the companies said that the government needs to give more support to STEM programmes at education level.
“Technology and innovation act as huge growth drivers and for the UK to achieve its goal of technological and economic growth, investment in skills must be made, which also means guiding young people who will be looking to start their careers,” commented Sheila Flavell, chief operation officer of IT solutions firm FDM Group.
Although it looks as though city councils are working on this, as this week, the Major of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, revealed plans for a new qualification for young people wanting to get into tech, without the traditional academic pathway, called “Manchester Baccalaureate”.
As it stands, current pupils in England work through the English Baccalaureate, which is a set of GCSE qualifications that can then be followed by A-Levels, university, and employment.
Andy Burnham hopes that his proposed MBacc will provide more focused technical skills for pupils which will set them up for jobs suitable for the local economy.
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