Following a survey of 38 major multinationals and SMEs employing more than 25,000 people in the IT sector in Ireland, Fastrack to IT (FIT) has today launched its ICT Skills Audit, offering a granular view of the IT skills gap.
The report, which was revealed today at the College of Computer Training, Dublin, claims there are more than 4,500 immediate vacancies in Ireland’s ICT sector and that these jobs are not being filled because candidates do not have the skills required.
While these positions range from entry level to expert level, many of them require intermediate-level skills that FIT believes can be obtained through six to 24-month long training programmes.
The key areas where employers are noticing a skills shortage are mobile development, web development, games development, networking and infrastructure, platform administration, creative digital media, CRM, programming technologies, contact centre support, cloud computing and virtualisation, and project management.
As well as technical skills, employers are seeking soft skills, such as written and verbal communication, leadership, teamwork and customer focus.
Building a talent pipeline
FIT, an initiative led by the tech industry, provides training programmes for the long-term unemployed to gain marketable technical skills. “We have been increasingly concerned at the growing skill shortages in the sector while recognising an increasing and untapped opportunity to create a talent pipeline comprising those job seekers with transferable skills from declining sectors,” said FIT CEO Peter Davitt.
Filling the skills gap is becoming more urgent in order to prevent multinational companies from reallocating these jobs to other bases.
If Ireland can produce more skilled candidates in these target areas, the country would be even more appealing for foreign direct investment.
“We are seeing a worldwide increase in demand for ICT skills,” said Minister for Training and Skills Ciarán Cannon, TD. “While we cannot create a supply of highly skilled ICT professionals overnight, through the development and ongoing implementation of the joint Government-Industry ICT Action Plan, Ireland has been at the fore in taking measures to build the pipeline of high-level ICT graduates.”