This is a guest blog by Molly Smith, marketing and recruitment assistant at FDM Group
It is ironic to learn that although employers in the digital and IT sector are crying out for employees with the skills to work in the industry, that the level of unemployment for those who have graduated with a degree in Computer Science is the highest in the UK. You would think with companies in the UK crying out for the IT skills shortage gap to close, that the unemployment rate for graduates with a degree in Computer Science would be getting smaller rather than on the rise.
With the unemployment rate for Computer Science graduates being one of the highest with a rate of 12.9% according to statistics from Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA). The reason behind the high unemployment rates in the UK's IT industry must be down to graduates with Computer Science degrees graduating with a lack of skills that companies are searching for when hiring employees with a background in Computer Science related degrees.
So what can be done to address the IT skills shortage and what steps can be taken to eradicate this problem in the industry? If graduates are not leaving university with the skills that are desired by organisations within the IT and Digital sectors then those pursuing a career in IT need to go elsewhere to gain the required skills. Computer Science graduates should be looking to further expand the skills they have gained from their degree, as the unemployment rate problem develops from the skills that are being taught on computer related courses are not matching those that employers desire when hiring new talent.
It is has been recently spoken about in the news that companies in the UK's digital sector are starting to look overseas to bring in a pool of applicants with the desired skills for the roles needed by employers. Organisations are calling for changes to the UK visa system to be made to help attract candidates with the right skills in from abroad; but surely it is easier for these organisations to look to the UK for applicants and to help to relieve the unemployment problem we have here in the UK.
Instead of employers having to look abroad to help close the IT skills gap they should be looking towards organisations that build their business on helping graduates to overcome the bridge between academia and employment. FDM Group, the UK's leading IT graduate employer, employs 1,000 graduates a year for its Graduate Programme providing them with quality training which delivers them with the skills and qualifications along with commercial experience to become a professional IT Consultant. Once graduates have completed the training programme they are then placed on to client sites to fulfil client demands in various IT projects.
Training programmes such as FDM's help to close the IT skills gap and meet the demand in the IT sector by delivering businesses with the highly skilled professionals that they are crying out for. It makes sense for organisations in the digital sector to build relationships with companies like FDM that can offer them talented graduates with the skills needed to fulfil the opportunities in this fast growing market and help to relieve the IT skills shortage in the UK.
There is no need to look abroad for highly skilled IT consultants, they are right here in the UK: you just need to look a little harder!