Increased confidence among Scotland’s IT sector, survey finds
Scotland’s technology and computing industry is predicted to expand in the coming year, according to a comprehensive survey.
An annual survey for industry body ScotlandIS reveals an overwhelming number of Scotland’s IT companies expect sales to rise and to be recruiting new staff over the next year.
Of 150 organisations polled, 86 per cent predict growth, up two per cent on last year’s survey, with 83 per cent planning to increase staff numbers.
While demand for graduates is expected to be high - 74 per cent are likely to recruit - only a third said they would recruit modern apprentices.
Businesses reported the biggest skills requirement to aid business growth was people with software and web development skills.
Global markets could play an increased role too, with 57 per cent of businesses already exporting, and 16 per cent planning to do so in the future.
Polly Purvis, CEO of ScotlandIS, said the findings showed software and IT provided “huge opportunities” for young people, but warned the skills gap within the sector in Scotland is making it hard for companies to retain experienced staff.
“The skills gap is beginning to hit home, causing wage inflation and making it harder for companies to retain experience, so we are pleased to see the public sector and our members working together to find a solution," she said.
“We have welcomed initiatives such as the Skills Investment Plan for Scotland’s Digital Technologies and ICT Industries, and we are glad to see that its recommendations are being put into action. By dealing with this problem now we will ensure that our industry is able to continue to grow and contribute to the Scottish economy.”
According to the data, the sector employs 80,000 people, which equates to one in 25 people employed north of the border. ScotlandIS estimates it contributes over three per cent of Scotland’s goods and services.