Page 3 - The Digital Talent Gap

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77% of companies consider
missing digital skills as the
key hurdle to their Digital
Despite the skills shortage,
only 46% of companies are
investing in developing
digital skills.
Only 4% of companies we
interviewed are aligning
their training efforts with
their digital strategy.
Organizations are currently facing an
acute shortage of digital skills. To find
out the current level of skills shortage
and reasons behind this shortage, we
interviewed companies across the globe.
Companies are Not
Investing in Digital Skills
Over 90% of the companies we
interviewed stated that they did not have
necessary skills in the areas of social
media, mobile, internal social networks,
process automation and performance
monitoring and analysis
. That is not to
say they do not realize the importance
of such digital skills. Our research
with the MIT uncovered that 87% of
companies feel digital transformation is a
competitive opportunity
. However, only
46% were investing in the development
of digital skills
Training Programs are Out
of Sync
A key challenge that we uncovered was
how out of sync the training efforts were.
We found that only 4% of companies
ensured that their training efforts were
aligned with their overall digital strategy.
Current Approaches to Developing
Digital Skills are Broken
The result of this lack of synchronization
and alignment became clear when we
analyzed corporate training budgets
allocated to digital. We found that none
of the companies we surveyed spends
more than 20% of its training budget on
digital. Such poor investment is clearly
reflected in the limited reach of training
initiatives. For an overwhelming 95% of
companies, only 20% of their workforce
benefited from trainings on digital
page 4).
Many Companies Continue
to Use Traditional
Approaches for Sourcing
Digital Skills
Companies seem to be overly cautious
and conservative in their acquisition
of digital skills. We found that while
companies are increasingly using
multiple methods to source digital
skills, they still rely heavily on traditional
methods such as training, recruitment
and partnership. In our survey, over 63%
of companies are using such traditional
methods to source digital talent
. On
the other hand, only 13% of companies
are using innovative methods such as
targeted company acquisition or an
incubator approach (see page 4). While
traditional methods definitely need to
be considered, other inventive avenues
present many untapped opportunities.
There have been many success
stories of companies that have used
innovative approaches such as acquiring
companies and engaging startups
through incubation.
The Human Resources
Function is Not Actively
Involved in Digital Skills
An added challenge appears to be
the fact that HR is not in the driver’s
seat when it comes to steering digital
skills development. We found that only
30% of organizations have mentioned
HR as being actively involved in skills
. So, the question remains
who is managing the transformation of
skills if it is not HR? In over 60% of the
companies we surveyed, it was the senior
leadership, IT division, functional teams
and employees who were spearheading
digital skills development
This lack of investment and alignment
with digital strategy is worrisome as
it means that companies still have a
long way to go before they can resolve
their digital skills issue. Apart from the
investment focus, a talent shortage of
the magnitude that organizations face
today requires a more proactive stance
on the part of companies. Organizations
need to tap into newer platforms for
acquiring skills while also accelerating
the pace of skills development. They
need to understand that traditional
skills and approaches are not going to
help them in the digital age. In the next
section, we take a look at the skills that
organizations need in order to thrive in
the digital world.