The UK is facing a digital skills shortage of significant proportions, according to recent research from the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee. If not addressed, organisations that lack the necessary digital skills could run the risk of increased security threats and failed cloud migrations, warns The Bunker.
The Commons Science and Technology Committee found that by 2017, the UK will require 745,000 more workers with digital skills. Organisations, however, are already feeling the effect of this shortage. Similar recent research by Harvey Nash and KPMG found that 65 per cent of CIOs were suffering from a technology skills shortage. This proportion is at the highest level since the Great Recession, almost a decade ago, indicating the gravity of the skills shortage situation.
Phil Bindley argues that the current technology climate makes this skills deficit even more acute:
“The technological capabilities available to business have exploded over the last few years, with big data, analytics, cloud computing, and many more progressions bringing new and exciting possibilities. However, in order to take advantage and deploy these new capabilities securely and effectively, organisations need to have a number of specialised skillsets at their disposal. For example, many organisations are now moving to hybrid cloud models so that they can leverage all the benefits of the cloud whilst having some data stored on-site. This is an inherently complex model, and it requires unique skillsets both throughout the process of adoption and afterwards in maintenance. Our own research indicates that 70 per cent of those who have migrated some data to a cloud infrastructure have already encountered some form of failure. Clearly, organisations are already lacking some key capabilities for this critical undertaking.”
Bindley also has concerns about the security impact of this skill shortage: “The complex processes that the IT departments are undergoing, such as cloud adoption, all entail close attention to data security. It is therefore a real and immediate concern that needs to be tackled head on with the appropriate skillsets. Businesses need to ensure that they have these skills at their disposal, as failure to protect data adequately will heighten the risk of a security breach.
“The modern IT department needs people who are equipped to deal with its unique challenges, and in this organisations have a number of choices. Investing in skills in-house is rightly seen as important, but there’s a limit to the speed with which one can foster all the necessary capabilities within a single organisation. Similarly, public policy changes are unlikely to supply 745,000 skilled technology workers within a year.
“Fortunately, there are third-party providers who specialise in the required skills. These trusted providers can step in to provide support at critical junctures, either as a short-term fix or as long-term transformation partners. Organisations that are looking to mitigate against this digital skill shortage would be well-advised to see what options are out there,” concludes Bindley.
NOTES TO EDITORS
About The Bunker
The Bunker is a trusted partner for compliant and secure outsourced infrastructure and data storage. With fully owned UK data centres outside the M25 yet within easy reach of London, we provide Managed Hosting, Colocation, and Cloud Infrastructure and Storage to businesses that value the confidentiality, integrity and availability of their applications and data.
At The Bunker, we believe that Information Security should enable businesses to be more competitive, manage risk, protect brand and allow innovation in a controlled manner. We’ve adhered to this philosophy for more than a decade, keeping some of the most demanding businesses compliant, secure and available. Our data centres are former nuclear bunkers upgraded with millions of pounds of investment in networking infrastructure, fire suppression, power and cooling. We are service led, compliant, and secure by design.
For more information on The Bunker please visit: www.thebunker.net