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December 2012

Dec 10, 2012

Lack of IT Expertise Keeps Many Organizations Grounded

By Mike Westholder

Myriad companies have booked their flights, packed their bags, and prepared for takeoff to the technology destinations of their dreams. The allure of trends like mobile and cloud computing, social business, and analytics is undeniable as organizations increasingly draft plans to adopt one or more.

However, nearly 90 percent of enterprises are stuck on the proverbial tarmac, because they don’t have the knowledgeable pilots, flight crews or mechanical staff to get off the ground.

Only one in 10 organizations worldwide reports it has all the skills needed for adopting the four key technologies of mobile, cloud, social business and analytics. That’s according to the 2012 IBM Tech Trends report, an international survey of more than 1,200 IT and businesspeople, 250 academics and 450 students, which was conducted by developerWorks and the IBM Center for Applied Insights and released Dec. 5. Here’s an interactive graphic illustrating the report’s key findings:

Not coincidentally, IBM launched a new education program designed to fill what Jim Corgel, IBM general manager, Academic and Developer Relations, describes as “a yawning skills gap.” This gap is the result of the simultaneous emergence of the aforementioned four tech trends, Corgel explains in his recent Building a Smarter Planet blog post:

“Each of them is a force to be reckoned with. Together they have the potential to transform businesses, government services and society. I believe that these new technologies could help rekindle economic growth around the world. But only if we close the skills gap—and fast.”

Accordingly, IBM announced programs and resources to help students and IT professionals develop these skills to prepare for these expanding employment opportunities. These include:

  • New training courses and resources for IT professionals
  • Technology and curriculum materials for educators
  • Expanded programs to directly engage students with real-world business challenges

Theses new effort represents the largest expansion of the Academic Initiative since its inception, according to IBM.

So as 2012, winds down, IBM, educators, and IT professionals and their employers are rightfully turning to the future. The next generation of IBMers is out there. Equipped with the right skills, they’ll all reach their destinations.