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Standing still: Inadequate training is leaving many technology workers behind

Tech skills in demand? AI trust, risk and security management/AI TRiSM.

Laptops are useful, but bring with them privacy and security concerns. — Photo: © Tim Sandle.
Laptops are useful, but bring with them privacy and security concerns. — Photo: © Tim Sandle.

Inadequate training is putting tech workers at risk of being left behind in the race for technology talent, according to new data released from the specialist firm Skillable. The review finds that while companies pumped $102 billion into training expenditures in 2022 alone, a relatively high 40 percent of technology workers say they are frustrated with current learning technologies and offerings that do not help them do their jobs better and keep them from advancing.

What are these skills that are seen by many as essential for their jobs and where do the shortfalls lie? Technology workers ranked the top five essential technical skills required to support CIOs and CTOs as:

  • IT infrastructure library (ITIL) – 53 percent
  • IT service management (ITSM) – 45 percent
  • Database management – 40 percent
  • Artificial intelligence for IT Operations (AIOps) – 37 percent
  • Database design – 33 percent

In keeping with the above areas of work focus, the top three crucial technology skills to be mastered in order to remain competitive were identified as: AI trust, risk and security management/AI TRiSM (51 percent), Composite AI (46 percent) and Generative AI (44 percent).

There are also frustrations with the learning technology. In several cases this is seen as not allowing workers to demonstrate their skill proficiency. In turn this limits the opportunity for personalization and makes it difficult to understand their readiness for new opportunities.

The same cohort of technology workers point out current training has not kept pace with the rate of industry change. This means that some current offerings have not adequately prepared them for the future.

When asked ‘what would make their learning experience more engaging?’, 67 percent of respondents said real-world applications.

There are signs that the effects of this are being noticed and responded to by the bigger players. For instance, larger firms like Microsoft, Amazon and IBM are shifting course, pushing on with the upskill battle by revamping training and switching outdated knowledge-based training methods in favour of a hands-on, real-world learning models.

In terms of the advantages of this, hands-on learning experiences through aspects like virtual laboratories are potentially the missing piece to building more effective and valuable training programs.

In addition, these approaches can provide a critical step in providing safe environments to practice applying what they have learned.

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Written By

Dr. Tim Sandle is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for science news. Tim specializes in science, technology, environmental, business, and health journalism. He is additionally a practising microbiologist; and an author. He is also interested in history, politics and current affairs.

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