Sustainable investment is crucial to help retain positive impact of tech industries on non-digital sectors and wider economy
A Newcastle-based IT recruiter has called for further funding for “high cost” university tech courses, after the publication of an industry report that confirmed the importance of the sector to the economy.
One of the most comprehensive analyses of the UK’s digital industries to date, Tech Nation 2016 shows that across the North of England, more than 280,000 people are employed in tech.
Regionally, Newcastle and Durham generated the second highest advertised digital salary growth of any UK cluster at 26.6%, alongside a turnover growth rate of 29% and a GVA growth rate of 35%.
Mark Harbottle, a director at SearchBI, said it was particularly encouraging to see that software and app development, hardware, devices and open source hardware were now among the most sought after areas in which to work.
This, he suggested, reflected the premium organisations were prepared to place on hiring specialists with strong big data and business intelligence skills.
“The digital tech economy is a having a strong impact on the North of England,” he said.
“We are seeing huge demand for self-service business IT this year and beyond.
“These together with the dramatic increase in cloud-based/analytics solutions’ spend and demand for highly skilled people, are combining to drive even more growth in some of the most dynamic IT sectors.”
The report, he said, demonstrated the extraordinary growth of the region’s digital tech industry and its impact on non-digital industries.
However, to capitalise on opportunities, funding for training should be secured as BI analytics reach new heights.
This was particularly important as businesses would go on to process and store more information than ever.
“Businesses are looking for a next-generation BI and analytics platform that helps them tap into the power of their data, whether in the cloud or on-premises, Mr Harbottle said.
“This in turn is driving the demand for people at all entry levels, from graduates to highly experienced operatives.
“It’s therefore critical to ensure that funding for what’s seen as ‘high cost’ university subjects such as technology and scientific courses does not drop below current levels in real terms.
“It’s vital that investment in these subjects remains sustainable as we see the role of digital jobs and activity in non-digital industries.
“This will go along way to securing a steady stream of highly educated and talented young people leaving our higher education facilities with the specialist technology skills and acumen to meet the demand and support the wider economy as it grows and expands.”
SearchBI offers recruitment services for companies using business intelligence software systems.
It also offers support for candidates looking for work.