Mind the gap: Addressing the analytics skills gap with improved education

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That famous warning phrase heard regularly on the London Underground, warning passengers of the gap between the train and the platform, also applies to the UK tech industry.

We’re facing a gap between the skills available in today's workforce and the demand for specific skills in today’s job market. And the gap is set to get bigger unless we do something about it.

So why is there a gap?

As organizations develop in the digital era and tackle new concepts such as big data and Internet of Things (IoT), they need workers familiar with those topics. But the concepts are so new that not many workers have learned the skills needed for these areas yet. In the case of big data, it’s not just a volume issue – it’s also complicated, unstructured data being delivered at high velocity. Therefore, employees need the right analytical skills to solve business problems analytically, deliver meaningful insight, and enable their organization to make faster and better decisions.

According to a study by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) and SAS: The value of big data and the Internet of Things to the UK economy, some £322 billion of additional revenue is expected to be generated by to the UK economy from 2015 to 2020. As a result, 182,000 new jobs are likely be created over the same period. That means that anyone with the right data and analytics skills will be in high demand.

However, the gap remains an immediate concern in the job market, so the commitment from the government, universities and businesses to tackle the issue remains high. SAS has already started to help address this problem.

In 2014, SAS Analytics U launched as an academic program to help bridge the gap between academia and business.

More specifically, in the UK & Ireland, we have already achieved the following:

  • 50+ SAS-based Master degrees being taught
  • 3,500+ students graduating with SAS skills annually
  • 80 universities using SAS for teaching and research
  • All 24 Russell Group universities using SAS

Every year, we at SAS Analytics U: UK & Ireland want to make sure that our future generations are aware of the new skills needed in the workplace, and we are committed to addressing the hard and soft skills that businesses require.

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About Author

Mayra Pedraza

Associate Briefing Program Specialist, Marketing Executive

Mayra is a Marketing Specialist for the Academic Programme at SAS UK, she develops the brand awareness across the whole UK & Ireland student community. She joined SAS in January 2016 as an intern. Mayra manages the UK Academic social media platforms to share ideas and support other SAS users, she also creates events and sessions which contribute to engage more students into the analytics world.

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