E-skills pours cold water on UK IT skills shortage claims

This blog has featured many articles and views on the debate about wheter there “is or isn’t an IT skills shortage in the UK?”

I cannot avoid writing about this debate because proponants of offshoring often use the apparent shortage of UK IT skills as a reason to send work overseas.

There are good arguments made about the shortage of particular skills, but IT professionals in their thousands find themselves out of work.

This week one of my colleagues wrote a story about the latest stats from e-skills, which suggested that in the first alf of last year, when there were claims of a shortage, there was excess supply of IT professionals in the UK.

“…75,000 jobseekers plus 37,000 unemployed IT professionals led to an excess supply of 18,000 “ready candidates” in the market for the second quarter of 2010,” redfas the article.

Here is Jenny Williams’ full article.

Also see the survey promoted by this blog last month which revealed some interesting facts and views from within the IT sector.

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There seems to be a tremendous amount of confusion about whether skill shortages actually exist. On one hand we have training companies trying to "talk the market up" on the other we see large numbers of professionals and graduates out of work.

We need an "independent" audit of the market.

There is very little skills shortage in the UK. There is simply a large number of companies who are willing to put up with poor quality software produced by ICTs and offshore companies just because they are cheap.

I've now been out of work for 17 months despite having send out three and a half thousand applications. I know several people who've been out of work for more than three years.

Go into any bank, insurance or large company and the IT department will be wall to wall with Indian IT staff.