Big data: analytics' pot of gold

Inside the Enterprise: Can analytics boost the economy, and is IT ready to provide the resources to do so?

But there are concerns over whether UK businesses, and the UK IT sector in particular, has the skills it needs to help businesses exploit big data. In particular, the figure for the jobs boost from better data analytics depends heavily on UK companies increasing their IT and analytics teams' capabilities, or where work is outsourced, by that work going to UK firms.

This is by no means certain. Already, CIOs are reporting shortages of business intelligence and analytics specialists. The problem is, if anything, more acute in the lines of business themselves. There is little point in IT building sophisticated new analytics tools, if the business lacks the skills needed to interpret the results, and turn the data into decision making.

In fact, unless the skills gap is plugged, and plugged soon, it is not just the jobs benefits but the wider economic opportuntity presented by big data that could be lost. When it comes to skills, work could go to India, Eastern Europe or even the US. But companies ignoring the big data opportunity would be an even worse outcome.

This point is not lost on the Cebr: "the jobs figures do assume there is a labour market that is available, trained and skilled," said Shehan Mohamed, the report's main author, and a Cebr economist. "There is a need to close that gap over the next five years."

To an extent this is already happening, and the IT industry is playing a role, for example though SAS' Curriculum Pathways project, which aims to boost the understanding of statistics and analysis in schools.

But it is also an area where CIOs and IT directors can take a lead, and use this report, and others like it, to show that there is more to data management than good housekeeping.

Stephen Pritchard is a contributing editor at IT Pro

Featured Resources

Choosing a collaboration platform

Eight questions every IT leader should ask

Download now

Performance benchmark: PostgreSQL/ MongoDB

Helping developers choose a database

Download now

Customer service vs. customer experience

Three-step guide to modern customer experience

Download now

Taking a proactive approach to cyber security

A complete guide to penetration testing

Download now

Most Popular

Microsoft is submerging servers in boiling liquid to prevent Teams outages
data centres

Microsoft is submerging servers in boiling liquid to prevent Teams outages

7 Apr 2021
How to find RAM speed, size and type
Laptops

How to find RAM speed, size and type

8 Apr 2021
Roadmap 2021: What’s coming from 3CX
Advertisement Feature

Roadmap 2021: What’s coming from 3CX

30 Mar 2021