Trainers see first signs of growth

IT training companies are reporting their first signs of growth for three years as companies invest in new systems and begin...

IT training companies are reporting their first signs of growth for three years as companies invest in new systems and begin major roll-outs.

IT Skills Research said the growth index for training companies has reached 70 on a scale of zero to 100 this year, showing that spending on IT training is on its way up.

"Organisations are upskilling for forthcoming projects, which might include those that were backlogged over the past two or three years," said IT Skills Research director David Pardo.

A rising demand for training in management skills provides further evidence that companies are gearing up to invest more in IT, he said.

Richard Chappell, managing director of training provider Learning Tree, said there was a "genuine and tangible" upturn in demand. "One of our most popular courses is project management, so clearly companies are giving projects the green light. They are gearing up their technical staff," he said.

Barbara Greenway, managing director of training firm Parity, has also seen rising demand for project management and service management training - an indication that companies are preparing for project roll-outs.

Although demand for technical training has fluctuated from month to month, overall there has been an upward trend, she said.

"It looks like IT departments are beginning to invest in new systems. In the first quarter of the year there was a much larger number of requirements for training issued than for the same time last year. And we are also seeing much more training for new systems," said Greenway.

Website development, SQL Server, Windows 2000/2003 and security skills are in high demand, said Learning Tree.

Finance companies are among those spending more on training, as are telecoms suppliers, including BT and Nortel, which are stepping up spending on training after a heavy telecoms slump, said Parity.
This was last published in June 2004

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