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Big data and data analytics are vital to the UK’s digital growth, expected to be worth £241 billion to the UK economy by 2020 creating 157,000 additional jobs. However this will only be possible if we have people with the right skills to fill key big data roles. Without the right talent pool, the UK’s ability to capitalise on the big data revolution will be constrained.
The UK’s digital skills gap is already costing the UK £2bn per year due to the inability of employers to fill key digital skills roles. The big data and data analytics sector stands to lose the most given it is expected to count for the largest proportion of UK digital vacancies following a survey of techUK members which found that 62% will require more big data capabilities over the next five year.
To ensure the UK seizes the opportunity to lead the world in data driven economic growth we need to understand the specific skills and capabilities that are needed. Requirements go beyond the simple definition of data scientists.
This paper identifies the skills required across a big data supply chain and highlights areas where there is the biggest skills deficit. It then makes a number of recommendations relating both to the domestic skills pipeline and the UK’s continued ability to attract some of the best talent from around the world.