Brocade announced a new GLOBAL DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION SKILLS STUDY, which aims to uncover how well-placed global IT leaders consider themselves and their teams to be in terms of meeting current and future business demands. Of the six markets surveyed, Germany was found to be the best prepared to meet its digital transformation goals, closely followed by the U.S., while the UK lagged well behind its counterparts.
The research, which surveyed 630 IT leaders in the U.S., UK, France, Germany, Australia, and Singapore, indicates that many organizations are at a tipping point, as new technology demands are set to outstrip the skills supply. Organizations that address this now through additional skills training will be in the strongest position to ensure business growth and competitive advantage.
Overall, an encouraging 91 percent of global IT leaders acknowledge that IT departments are currently recognized as very important or critical to innovation and business growth. However, more than half (54 percent) predict they will struggle with a lack of IT talent in 12 months. Contributing factors identified from the research include skills shortages, prevalence of outdated skills, lack of commitment to training at the corporate board level, and the rapidly changing technology environment.
"Businesses are approaching the peak of IT strategic influence. Now is the moment that IT teams feel they have the strongest opportunity to influence the transformation of their organizations," said Christine Heckart, chief marketing officer and senior vice president of ecosystems, Brocade. However, with a rapidly changing technology landscape and potential impact on international labor markets, it is critical that IT receives the right training to further develop their skills and business relevance."
The research also found that skills planning had to be aligned with other areas of business planning to avoid the risk of a technology skills deficit, where IT teams are expected to deliver the benefits of technologies that they are ill-equipped to implement.
Staff shortages and outdated skills are preventing ITDMs from delivering on current business demands
Organizations are attempting to move their IT departments away from their traditional roles, but the lack of skills and the time required to learn those skills have held them back. IT decision makers (ITDM) believe this could be a major contributor to their inability to meet business demands, putting organizations at risk of falling behind their competitors and losing customers.
Approximately one in four respondents in Australia, France, Germany, Singapore, and the U.S. claim that they cannot deliver on current business demand due to staff shortages. This number rises to 42 percent in the UK.
Respondents claim that the lack of access to talent will prevent them from implementing new technologies efficiently, lead to a decrease in employee satisfaction, and result in the loss of market share.
The IT skills gap is only likely to get worse and organizations need to act now
The political landscape is also a contributing factor in the widening skills gap. As market uncertainty intensifies in the next few years, it is more important than ever for IT departments to remain agile and take advantage of new technologies.