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What is the cost of the skills mismatch?

What is the cost of the skills mismatch?

For those who are seeking a career in software engineering or web development then now is an excellent time to find a job.

Businesses, however, are troubled by the lack of candidates with the skill set that they need for the vacant roles.

According to a global study by PwC entitled ‘Adapt to Survive’, commissioned by LinkedIn, the UK could be short of £1.2 billion as a result of the talent mismatch. The study looked at 2,600 employers from the Saratoga database at PwC as well as data from some of the 15 million employers on LinkedIn.

Part of the reason for the talent mismatch is due to the evolution of technology and the lack of candidates who have kept up with the changing needs of industry. In the UK, this could be due to their inability to retrain, learn new skills or to change sectors.

PwC believes that the country could be short of £930 million due to the additional levels of productivity that it is missing out on as companies are unable to get their workers to update their skills for their needs. It made this calculation based on how adaptable a workforce is in a country to the needs of a business.

Additionally, the lack of talent is costing employers £270 million per year on attempting to recruit the right workers. PwC said that this is because the longer the time taken to try to find the right members of staff, the more likely it is that mismatched talent will leave.

Global head of human resources services practice at PwC Michael Rendell said of the results of the study: “Businesses’ growth strategies are changing and many UK chief executive officers recognise that they don’t currently have the right people with the right skills in the right places to achieve their aspirations.

“Instead of a skills gap hampering growth plans, organisations need to be better at matching talent to opportunities. This includes using analytics to identify skills that are central to the business strategy now and in the future, improving internal mobility and rewarding people who display new and adaptable skills.”

The challenges that the skills mismatch presents to the IT industry has been well documented as UK employers have stated that it is one of the areas most likely to hold them back.

In the most recent CompTIA annual survey, released during May 2013, it was revealed that 44 per cent of businesses felt that they were a long way from where they needed to be.

They stated that one of the main reasons for this was, indeed, due to the fact that technology moves very quickly from being invented to being applied across industry. As a result, skills need to be reassessed regularly and employers need to ensure all staff are properly trained to use their new technologies.

Even so, the study found that 86 per cent of staff had not engaged with any training over the course of the 12 months prior to the survey. Additionally, of those that did receive training, only 35 per cent did this with an instructor.

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