Study: IT skills gap caused by new technology, lack of resources

Approximately eight in 10 businesses are negatively impacted because of a widening IT skills gap, according to a new study.
Written by Rachel King, Contributor

The fast-changing nature of technology and a lack of training resources are two of the biggest factors causing a significant gap in IT skills these days, according to a new study from CompTIA, a non-profit association covering the information technology industry.

The report, which surveyed 502 U.S. IT and business managers between December and January about the state of skills among the nation’s IT workforce, found that at least eight in 10 businesses were found to be negatively impacted because of this skills gap.

Some of the results included problems with staff productivity, customer service, time-to-market, and security.

Overall profitability also proved to be a sticking point for some, with at least 23 percent of the small businesses participating in the study admitting they felt a pinch because of an IT skills gap. Larger businesses and enterprises weren't far behind with 15 percent admitting the same setback.

So which skills are missing from a lot of these companies? Some of the most common shortcomings include handing emerging trends such as virtualization, process automation, and collaboration. But even core areas such as network security and updating equipment are also falling by the wayside.

Terry Erdle, executive vice president of skills certification at CompTIA, explained in the report that few organizations at where they want to be (or at least should be) when it comes to adequate IT skill levels:

Millions of businesses are clearly not where they want to be when it comes to optimizing their utilization of technology and in the skill levels of their IT staffs. Even modest improvements in these two areas would yield tremendous benefits in operational efficiencies, business productivity and economic growth.

Approximately six in ten organizations replied by promising to address IT skills gap challenges with training or retraining existing staff in areas where skills are lacking.


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