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If recruiters help UK companies access the best digital talent, the economy could be boosted by £92 billion per year & 106,000 new jobs

Digital investment will result in some job losses but these are far outweighed by the number of new jobs that will be created

If you are a recruiter in the IT sector, or are looking to expand into other sectors, IT is a huge opportunity.  Everywhere I look I see how ‘Digital’ will revolutionise things in the near future at a rate we have never seen before.

In a recent survey nearly 30% of recruiters ranked IT the most challenging sector to fill roles, coming 3rd only behind Engineering and Oil & Gas.

And recruiters have a further role to play, to help educate employers in creating a gender balance in IT and promoting anti-sexism.  Recently, thousands of female engineers have taken to Twitter to dispel the myth that all engineers are men. Women working in science, technology, engineering and associated subjects have been tweeting under the hashtag #iLookLikeAnEngineer and posting selfies and describing what they do.

A major research report from Oxford Economics and Virgin Media Business finds the economy could receive a £92 billion boost if firms fully develop their digital potential, equivalent to 2.5% of GDP.

In the last year, digital capabilities generated £123 billion in business revenues, equivalent to 3.4% of total GDP.

UK companies expect to add over one million new jobs over the next two years as a direct result of enhancing digital capabilities.

Looking at the next two years, UK companies are optimistic about the potential of digital to drive growth. While digital is expected to result in some job losses (approximately 300,000 jobs or 2% of the workforce), more than four in ten businesses (44%) expect no jobs at all to become obsolete and across all industries new hires outweigh any losses.

Aggregated across the economy, the number of employees companies anticipate hiring as a result of digital investments is 1.1 million, suggesting a net creation of 800,000 jobs. When it comes to growth, if recruiters can help all UK companies access the best digital capabilities available, the economy could be boosted by a further £92 billion per year, equivalent to 2.5% of GDP.

Apple is rumoured to be creating a new car, which will turbo charge how software development will overshadow everything in the automobile industry.

In a recent legal report, top law firm bosses envision Watson-type computers replacing young lawyers.

Dentons, a huge global firm, and others are working with a program called ROSS, the “artificially intelligent robot” focused on US bankruptcy affairs.

“Just like a human, it’s getting its experience in a law firm and being able to learn and get better,” Andrew Arruda, a ROSS co-founder, told the Toronto Globe and Mail.

Another big firm, Latham & Watkins, said it is “test-driving new IBM Watson-based applications” The American Lawyer said.

Peter Kelly, Managing Director, Virgin Media Business, said: “Digital technologies are transforming the face of business and the wider UK economy, and it’s clear that all UK companies see the huge potential that digital has for growth. However, the incredible pace of change means there is no place to hide, or room to stand still. Any business with ambitions to grow through digital needs to invest in the right technology and skills, while the government and industry have to deliver the infrastructure and support to help them. Over the coming years we’re investing £3 billion to bring the fastest broadband to more businesses of all sizes, to help them seize the chance to become digital leaders.”

John Cridland, CBI Director-General, said: “The Virgin Media Business report reveals a huge digital opportunity for UK businesses.  Both the public and private sectors have much to gain from harnessing the benefits of digital technology. The UK is the tech capital of Europe but digital advances never stop, so if we want it to stay ahead we need more young people studying computing to a higher level. Looking into the future, the proposed EU digital single market, if delivered well, would be great news for both business and consumers, reducing barriers to e-commerce across the continent.”

Digital Economy Minister Ed Vaizey MP said: “The significant digital opportunity for businesses of all types and the economy as a whole is one that we can’t ignore. Government will continue working alongside companies like Virgin Media to transform the UK’s digital capabilities and laying the foundations for a thriving, digitally-led future.”

About The Author

Azmat Mohammed is the founder of: Institute of Recruiters, IOR | | | Recruiting Times Magazine | | @Azmat

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