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Joint work needed to boost UK IT skills capability

British Airways chief information officer Paul Coby has called for action from public and private sector organisations to boost the UK technology skills pool following the government's Spending Review.

As the chair of the CIO board of sector skills council E-Skills UK, Coby often voices his opinions around building a strong IT skills capability as an essential element to spur economic growth.

"After the Comprehensive Spending Review, I think those of us in the UK IT industry have a big opportunity to work with the government on the critical importance of technology skills," Coby told Computer Weekly.

"Technology is the key to sustainable economic growth. It underpins improvements in public sector productivity and the growth of private sector business," Coby added.

"We need to create the best technology skills pool in the world in the UK. This should be the headline strategy for growth and jobs across all industry sectors."

According to Coby, IT "holds the key to innovation and global competitiveness" across the entire economy and will underpin the majority of future job creation in the western world.

"We are already seeing this [growth] - the technology professional workforce is one area that continued to expand throughout the recession," he said.

"Half of Europe's productivity gains in recent years are estimated to be attributable to IT, which is at the heart of new economy sectors, from low-carbon to biotechnology to space technology."


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