[Market Paper] Overcoming the UK and Irish software skills gap
A talent crisis has engulfed western Europe, and the UK and Ireland aren’t exempt. This skills shortage means IT decision makers in the region are looking beyond merely hiring locally, and are now looking to leverage global pools of elite engineering talent in the drive to digitalise at pace.
Speedy transformation is keeping CIOs and CTOs busy in 2022, and higher on the agenda of both small and large enterprises than ever before. And, with everything from retail to automotive to healthcare going ‘software centric’, the need for top software engineering talent is paramount. Without it, businesses are at risk of being left behind in the race to digital-first business.
The fight for top development talent hots up
With major companies basing their European HQs in Dublin’s ‘Silicon Docks’ region, the major players are at risk of pricing any smaller businesses out of the picture for top engineering talent. A trend that’s also seen in London and other major metro areas in the most developed countries. With work-life balance becoming a higher priority for many employees than salary, retention is also an area of concern — with major players able to offer a vast array of benefits that help them obtain and retain the engineering cream of the crop.
A flourishing tech landscape
Cities outside London and Dublin are helping to lead the charge. Cambridge leads the way, with places like Manchester not too far behind. With all this focus on software and becoming tech-centric, the thirst for engineering talent is only growing. And there’s a growing concern that educational institutions aren’t producing graduates with a sufficient range nor level of skills in particular areas of need.
There’s a shortage in the skills needed to not just lead but to simply compete in a digital-first charge. Technical expertise is required in areas like coding, AI, ML, and cloud computing. On top of that, a higher level of soft skills are necessary to leverage that technology to craft real-world solutions.
Thinking local vs thinking global
Like two pugilists squaring off, the notion of hiring local developers has come up against a formidable foe: offshore talent pools. On top of the commonly known cost benefits, it’s actually talent and skills that IT leaders are looking to leverage in the present day.
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