Accessability Links
Cookies on our website
By continuing to use this website we will assume you are happy to receive cookies as outlined in our cookie policy
Accept Policy

Digital skills gap narrowing, but more needs to be done, says Deloitte

Jan 11
 
Tags: Deloitte
Share this story:
Digital skills gap narrowing, but more needs to be done...

The digital skills gap - an issue that has raised a lot of questions and caused widespread concern with regards to the UK economy - appears to be narrowing, according to research by Deloitte.

A new report from the firm highlights positive trends over recent months, but also points out that further progress is needed in some key areas.

Growing confidence

One of the key findings in the latest Digital Disruption Index showed that nearly one in five business leaders (18 per cent) believe school leavers and graduates are entering the workforce with the right digital skills and experience. Less than one in eight (12 per cent) expressed this view in a survey conducted six months earlier.

Following a similar trend, a quarter (25 per cent) of respondents from FTSE-listed companies, large private businesses and UK public sector organisations surveyed in September and October 2018 said their current workforce has the knowledge and skills required to execute their digital strategy. This marked an increase from 16 per cent in spring 2018.

While these are encouraging developments, corporate leaders who feel positive about the availability of key digital skills are still very much in the minority.

Three-quarters (75 per cent) of survey respondents said technologies such as artificial intelligence, robotics and the Internet of Things are transforming their operations, meaning businesses will become increasingly reliant on people with the capability to use and implement these innovations.

Deloitte stressed that "more needs to be done" to ensure skills growth keeps up with the pace of adoption of new technologies in the workplace.

Oliver Vernon-Harcourt, partner at Deloitte and author of this year's Digital Disruption Index, said it's a "simple truth" that, if employees don't have the abilities, knowledge and experience to get the best out of digital innovations, investment in this space will "prove worthless".

"While it's promising to see improvements in leaders' confidence in their workers' digital abilities, there is a lot more that still needs to be done and, if left unaddressed, the skills gap could grow to a level that's hard to fill," he added.

"Failure to do more to educate both those in the workforce and those in the classroom will leave the UK trailing behind our global peers in the rapidly expanding digital economy."

AI policies

Another key section of the Digital Disruption Index focused on deployment of AI - something that is becoming increasingly important and possibly beneficial for many businesses.

While AI offers a lot of potential, the survey results revealed that only 42 per cent of digital leaders have a policy in place to ensure it is used safely and ethically.

Overall, 44 per cent of executives confirmed they have already invested in AI, while 37 per cent were expecting to take their first steps into this space within the next two years.

Where policies and procedure are concerned, Dr Matthew Howard, director of artificial intelligence at Deloitte, said AI decision-making should be assessed "in the same way as human decision-making".

He added: "In all instances, an organisation's values should inform how and why AI is used, just as those values are used to inform any other business decision."

Search Mindbench.com for the latest management consultancy jobs and consulting recruitment opportunities, or contact us on +44(0)207 089 9017.

Image: ersinkisacik via iStock

Share this story:
Add new comment
Jobs Related to this Post
5 result(s) found 
Page 1 of 1 

£150k plus £50k-£60k bo...
Central London
Our client delivers insurance-based solutions for the management of litigation risk for commercial clients, litigation funders and their lawyers. It operates as an underwriting agent with full
£50k plus £25k bonus
London or Manchester if preffered
Client Director (Account / Relationship Management) PE and VC Portfolio   You will join this growing consultancy team based out of a new London office in Clerkenwell or our Manchester office
£80k-£100k plus bonus, benef...
Central London, no travel required and...
Corporate Strategy Manager Our client is a leading global gaming and entertainment company. Making games is fun. Especially when you do it with people who share the same idea of what makes a good
£0k-£70k plus bonus, benefit...
Central London, no travel required and...
Would you like to be part of a company with the energy of a start-up, but which competes with ‘The Big Four’ for clients? Are you passionate, insightful and creative in terms of how to drive high
£70k-£100k plus package
Manchester or London
Consultant Technical Architect Our client is one of the top 50 fastest growing technology businesses. They make technology make a difference. They design, build and optimise high performance