IT skills shortages impact UK firms

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IT skills are increasingly in demand among UK firms

Companies of all sizes across the UK are being foiled in their plans to expand due to ongoing skills shortages within the IT sector.

A lack of available workers with essential IT skills is holding back many businesses from fulfilling their potential, new research from the online recruitment hub Indeed has revealed.

Java skills are among the most sought after for employees in the IT segment at present, but despite this many companies are now struggling to find the necessary talent.

As a result, those that do have the required skills in Java design are being offered extremely lucrative remuneration packages, with starting salaries now rising to in excess of £60,000 on average.

This compares to the typical UK salary of £26,600 - meaning Java-trained workers can expect to earn at least 130 per cent the norm.

However, the fact that skills shortages still remain means that businesses need to be doing more to highlight the generous packages that are on offer within the ICT segment at present.

Indeed chief economist Tara Sinclair argued: "Rather than focusing on salaries alone as the cure-all for attracting employees, organisations would be wise to look closely at the wider expectations and demands of their candidates, if they are to draw in the best talent.

"That said, while increasing the flexibility of the job offer can provide an effective short-term solution to draw in the best candidates, ultimately even these measures won't resolve systemic talent gaps that have a significant impact on the long term health of the business."

Ms Sinclair added that simply throwing money at the problem will not resolve the issue, as it is a systemic issue based on the fact that fewer people are entering into the ICT profession at present than are needed.

More targeted education for young people and for those already working in the ICT sector is therefore being called for, as only by ensuring individuals are being given the right advice on the best areas to focus their training will the problem be fixed in the years ahead.

"In a tight labour market, addressing barriers to education and self-advancement is a more valuable investment than outbidding competitors," Ms Sinclair concluded.