With a large number of digital businesses starting up and scaling globally from the UK market, the UK is undoubtedly a tech hub. But despite having the necessary funding, we still face a great challenge in ensuring our sector workforce represents its diverse and thriving customer base.
The UK Commission for Employment & Skills found 43% of STEM vacancies are hard to fill due to a lack of qualified candidates and it is estimated that the lack of digital skills is costing the UK economy an estimated £63 billion a year.
According to a report by job marketplace Hired, since the BREXIT result, the number of foreign tech candidates attending interviews with UK firms has fallen by more than 50%. This, coupled with a rise in demand for tech roles as data becomes increasingly valuable to businesses, means that the skills gap is getting wider.
Clearly, a lack of focus on technology in education is acting as a catalyst to the nation’s chronic digital skills shortage. In 2016, only 5,600 students studied computer science at A level (only 600 of which were female) versus 31,000 studying sociology.
If we are to keep up with the development pace of digital innovation in the UK, then something radical needs to change.
Join Gen Ashley, Director from Women Who Code at the IoD's Digital Strategy Summit to discuss how to address the skills shortage by encouraging and retaining diverse teams.
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