Skillsofts Global Knowledge Skills and Salary Report Finds Three in Four IT Departments Face Critical Skills Gaps OutBuro lgbtq professional entreprenuer networking online community gay lesbian queer

Skillsoft’s Global Knowledge Skills and Salary Report Finds Three in Four IT Departments Face Critical Skills Gaps

Gaps in IT staff skills causing increased stress levels and decreased productivity within organizations

BOSTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#LandDSkillsoft (NYSE:SKIL), a global leader in corporate digital learning, today released its annual Global Knowledge IT Skills and Salary Report, exploring the current state of skills gaps, training and development, compensation, and job satisfaction in the IT industry. Based on responses from more than 9,300 IT professionals, the report found that 76 percent of IT decision makers worldwide are facing critical skills gaps in their departments – a 145 percent increase since 2016. While still a significant challenge, this represents the second consecutive year of slight improvement (79 percent in 2019, 78 percent in 2020).

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“Today’s digital-first economy has presented significant opportunities for organizations. However, it has also created a dire need for new skills in cloud computing, cybersecurity, AI, DevOps, and many other critical tech areas,” said Michael Yoo, General Manager, Technology & Developer, Skillsoft. “Gaps in skills don’t just disappear, they only grow wider if not properly addressed. While it is encouraging to see early signs of closing the gap, work is far from done. Organizations must place a bigger emphasis on investing in employee training, empowering professionals to earn new certifications, and filling vacant roles with diverse candidates.”

To continue closing the skills gap, understanding the reasons behind it, and its impact, is critical. As digital transformation accelerates, 38 percent of IT decision makers cited the rate of technology change outpacing their existing skills development programs as the primary driver, followed by difficulty in attracting qualified candidates (35 percent) and lack of investment in training resources (32 percent). In addition to the direct effect these gaps have on organizations’ bottom lines – IDC predicts the financial impact growing to $6.5 trillion worldwide by 20251 – respondents also said they increase employee stress (55 percent), make it difficult to meet quality and business objectives (42 percent and 36 percent, respectively), and create project delays (35 percent), among other challenges.

Of note, organizations are increasingly recognizing the role that professional development plays in combatting skills gaps and raising employee morale and retention, with 56 percent of IT decision makers saying they have a plan in place to train existing team members. And, given that 80 percent of IT professionals report a myriad of benefits after achieving new skills and certifications – including improved quality of work (49 percent), higher levels of engagement (32 percent), and faster job performance (27 percent) – providing upskilling opportunities is a win-win for both organizations and employees alike.

Additional takeaways from the Global Knowledge IT Skills and Salary report include:

  • IT staff crave learning and development and will move on if they are not getting it.

    • For the third consecutive year, respondents that switched employers within the past year cited a lack of growth and development opportunities as their top reason for doing so (59 percent), taking precedence over better compensation (39 percent) and work/life balance (31 percent).
    • When training, 66 percent of respondents said they prefer a formal, instructor-led approach, while the remaining third gravitate toward informal, peer-to-peer methods, underscoring the value of providing personalized and blended learning experiences.
  • Salaries are on the rise and opportunities exist for even bigger paychecks.

    • The average annual salary for IT professionals has increased across all regions. Aside from executives and those in sales, the higher-paying positions are in cloud, risk management, security, and IT architecture and design.
    • 52 percent of respondents said they received a raise in the past year, attributing the increase to a variety of factors including job performance, developing new skills, and obtaining industry certifications.
  • More IT professionals are certified than ever and are boosting the bottom line.

    • 92 percent of all respondents said they have at least one certification, a 5 percent and 7 percent increase compared to 2020 and 2019, respectively.

      • 64 percent of IT decision makers say certified employees deliver $10,000 or more in added annual value compared to non-certified team members, demonstrating the positive impact that investment in training has on organizations’ bottom lines.

Resources:

1 – IDC, IDC FutureScape: Worldwide Future of Work 2022 Predictions, Doc. #US47290521, October 2021

Research Methodology

The 2021 IT Skills and Salary Survey was conducted online from November 2020 through February 2021, yielding more than 9,300 responses globally from IT decision makers and staff. Distributed by Global Knowledge, technology companies, and industry associations around the world, the survey was made available in web articles, online newsletters, and social media, and tabulated using the Qualtrics XM Platform.

About Skillsoft

Skillsoft (NYSE:SKIL) is a global leader in corporate digital learning, focused on transforming today’s workforce for tomorrow’s economy. The Company provides enterprise learning solutions designed to prepare organizations for the future of work, overcome critical skill gaps, drive demonstrable behavior-change, and unlock the potential in their people. Skillsoft offers a comprehensive suite of premium, original, and authorized partner content, including one of the broadest and deepest libraries of leadership & business skills, technology & developer, and compliance curricula. With access to a broad spectrum of learning options (including video, audio, books, bootcamps, live events, and practice labs), organizations can meaningfully increase learner engagement and retention. Skillsoft’s offerings are delivered through Percipio, its award-winning, AI-driven, immersive learning platform purpose built to make learning easier, more accessible, and more effective. Learn more at www.skillsoft.com.

Contacts

Investors
James Gruskin

james.gruskin@skillsoft.com

Media
Caitlin Leddy

caitlin.leddy@skillsoft.com

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It Can Take Eight Months Before New Starters Become Productive at Work

Employers must ensure their onboarding programs are more effective

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#Questionmark–Employers are taking too long to get new joiners up to speed. While firms are desperate for new modern skills to deal with the challenges of a shifting business landscape, research shows that it can take between three to eight months for employees to become fully productive.1

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The new Questionmark report “Getting the Best on Board” explores the importance of a structured onboarding process to setting staff up for success. Team members that receive effective onboarding are 18 times more likely to feel committed to their organization.2 Staff who have a negative onboarding experience are twice as likely to leave.3

Despite the importance of onboarding, the report notes five common challenges that make it difficult to achieve:

  1. Diverse starting points – it is hard for a manager to get a clear read on a person’s previous experience and gaps in their knowledge.
  2. Difficult to measure success – it might take several months for a manager to realize that a new joiner did not learn what they should have during the onboarding process.
  3. Information overload – five to ten departments are often involved in a company’s onboarding process.4 Without structured and prioritized content, a new starter will likely be overwhelmed.
  4. Time restraints – for a manager, taking time out for training and inducting a team member may not feel like a priority. But failing to make it one soon proves a false economy.
  5. Remote onboarding – some 37% of respondents said they had experienced a significant problem with the remote onboarding process.5

John Kleeman, Founder of Questionmark, said: “Assessing the skills of workers before, during and after the onboarding process can give leaders the information they need to check it is working and unlock performance. Assessments show an individual’s starting point, enabling information and training to be tailored and prioritized. Tests during the process indicate whether the information and procedures are being understood. Tests later down the line show whether the information has stuck.”

Managers can use online assessments to check that new workers have understood crucial policies and procedures such as security and health and safety. With information from assessments, employers can make better decisions about a team member’s job readiness.

Read the full report: “Getting the Best on Board: using staff assessments to get new workers on board and up to speed as quickly as possible, with the modern skills to thrive”.

www.questionmark.com

Ends

Notes to editors

About Questionmark

Questionmark unlocks performance through reliable and secure online assessments.

Questionmark provides a secure enterprise-grade assessment platform and professional services to leading organizations around the world, delivered with care and unequalled expertise. Its full-service online assessment tool and professional services help customers to improve their performance and meet their compliance requirements. Questionmark enables organizations to unlock their potential by delivering assessments which are valid, reliable, fair and defensible.

Questionmark offers secure powerful integration with other LMS, LRS and proctoring services making it easy to bring everything together in one place. Questionmark’s cloud-based assessment management platform offers rapid deployment, scalability for high-volume test delivery, 24/7 support, and the peace-of-mind of secure, audited U.S., Australian and European-based data centers.


1 A range of sources indicate a long period of time that it takes to get new starters working at their most productive. Here are two examples: https://hronboard.me/blog/5-ways-to-fast-track-productivity-in-new-starters/

https://www.intuition.com/how-to-maintain-momentum-for-onboarding-programs/

2 https://www.bamboohr.com/resources/infographics/the-incredible-impact-of-effective-onboarding/

3 https://digitate.com/blog/automation-and-ai-superheroes-in-disguise/

4 https://typelane.com/6-reasons-employee-onboarding-is-broken/

5 https://www.clickboarding.com/impact-of-covid-on-employee-onboarding/

Contacts

US: Kristin Bernor, external relations: Kristin.bernor@questionmark.com +1 203.349.6438

UK: Peter Sigrist: peter.sigrist@fourteenforty.uk +44 7720 056 981

Australia and New Zealand: Chelsea Dowd: chelsea.dowd@questionmark.com +61 2 8073 0527

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Employers Need a Break With the Past to Trigger the “Great Rehire”

With evidence growing of a mismatch between job openings and candidates, there needs to be a renewed focus on modern skills

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NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#Questionmark–The hiring system appears to be broken, with record job openings failing to trigger a “great rehire” because of an outdated focus on the wrong skills, says online assessment provider Questionmark.1

A recent survey of unemployed workers found over two thirds (70 percent) of job seekers were frustrated they could not find the right job to apply for. The majority (59 percent) also claimed there aren’t enough openings in their preferred profession. 2

Hiring for modern skills like critical thinking, problem-solving and digital literacy could be the answer, according to Questionmark. It appeals both to what employers increasingly need and what employees are looking for to advance their careers.

Neil McGough, General Manager of Questionmark, said: “After the ‘great resignation’ everyone has been waiting for the ’great rehire‘ but what has emerged is a serious mismatch between employer requirements and employee expectations. This problem could be mitigated by a renewed focus on modern skills. Employers need to assess the skills of their current workforce and review how required skills are presented in job specs and recruitment ads.”

Questionmark’s report “Modern Skills for a Post-Pandemic World” sets out the skills that would not traditionally be included in a generic job specification, but which employers now need and employees may find more attractive. These include:

  • Technology skills such as digital collaboration, digital communication, cybersecurity awareness and understanding artificial intelligence (AI)
  • Cognitive skills such as critical thinking and problem solving, data literacy, communication and creativity
  • Cultural skills such as accountability, collaboration and teamwork, and compliance

Questionmark urges employers to use assessments to gather real information about the modern skills that their current workforce has, and those offered by candidates through the recruitment process. A clear grasp of these alongside the technical skills associated with a role could provide a more appealing way to frame a job opening, helping to close the skills gap that is threatening to slow economic growth.3

www.questionmark.com

Ends

Notes to editors

About Questionmark

Questionmark unlocks performance through reliable and secure online assessments.

Questionmark provides a secure enterprise-grade assessment platform and professional services to leading organizations around the world, delivered with care and unequalled expertise. Its full-service online assessment tool and professional services help customers to improve their performance and meet their compliance requirements. Questionmark enables organizations to unlock their potential by delivering assessments which are valid, reliable, fair and defensible.

Questionmark offers secure powerful integration with other LMS, LRS and proctoring services making it easy to bring everything together in one place. Questionmark’s cloud-based assessment management platform offers rapid deployment, scalability for high-volume test delivery, 24/7 support, and the peace-of-mind of secure, audited U.S., Australian and European-based data centres.


1 https://apnews.com/article/health-coronavirus-pandemic-business-38685e73f4d7d7e51952263586896680
2 https://www.flexjobs.com/blog/post/job-seekers-frustrated-by-lack-of-opportunities/
3 https://finance.yahoo.com/news/skills-gap-may-turn-into-skills-canyon-by-end-of-pandemic-executive-warns-143047625.html

Contacts

For more information:

US: Kristin Bernor, external relations: Kristin.bernor@questionmark.com +1 203.349.6438

UK: Peter Sigrist: peter.sigrist@fourteenforty.uk +44 7720 056 981

Australia and New Zealand: Chelsea Dowd: chelsea.dowd@questionmark.com +61 2 8073 0527

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Clark Construction Group Partners with Other Industry Leaders to Launch Construction Inclusion Week

BETHESDA, Md.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Clark Construction Group is proud to announce the company’s participation as a founding member of Construction Inclusion Week, an initiative to build awareness, celebrate diversity and equity, and foster inclusion across the construction industry.

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In 2020, Clark joined fellow general contractors DPR, Turner, Gilbane, Mortenson, and McCarthy, to form the “Time for Change” consortium to identify ways to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion within the construction industry. Through this effort, Construction Inclusion Week was created. The inaugural week-long event, which kicks off on October 18, 2021, is open to the entire industry.

The theme for this year’s Construction Inclusion Week is “Building the Foundation for Inclusion.” Topics will include leadership commitment and accountability, unconscious bias, supplier diversity, jobsite culture, and community service and outreach.

“As business leaders, we have a unique opportunity to leverage our collective voices and resources to identify and solve key industry and societal challenges,” said Robby Moser, president and chief executive officer for Clark Construction. “Clark is honored to be part of this industrywide journey to build and foster a culture of diversity, equity, and inclusion, where our people and communities can thrive.”

Clark is continuously evaluating ways to strengthen its Inclusion & Diversity strategy, which is anchored by four key tenets.

  • Culture – Continually develop a positive, inclusive, and respectful workplace
  • Growth – Attract, retain, grow, and promote a diverse mix of talent at all levels of the organization
  • Resources – Provide the resources and support for its employees and company to thrive
  • Engagement – Positively impact communities by providing access to opportunity

These pillars inform the company’s efforts to foster meaningful change and yield a more diverse and inclusive business, industry, and society.

Like Construction Safety Week, Construction Inclusion Week demonstrates how a united industry can collectively set expectations for behaviors that foster positive and lasting change. Participating firms will have access to materials and resources such as toolkits and conversation guides to bring awareness to diversity, equity, and inclusion concepts for jobsites, teams, and organizations.

Visit www.constructioninclusionweek.com to sign up and learn more.

About Clark Construction Group

Clark Construction Group is one of the nation’s most experienced and respected providers of building and civil construction services companies with annual revenues of approximately $5 billion. Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, the company has offices strategically located to serve clients throughout the country. For more information, visit www.clarkconstruction.com.

Contacts

MEDIA CONTACT:
Carly Thayer

+1 (202) 756-7244

carly.thayer@allisonpr.com

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Employers Are Basing Vital Management Decisions on Wrong Age-Related Assumptions

Leaders need real information about workers’ abilities to equip teams with modern skills

Questionmark PrimaryLogo

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#LnD–Employers are making too many assumptions about the age of an employee and their ability to learn modern digital skills. But to avoid costly mistakes business leaders should base those conclusions on real information about the workforce, says Questionmark, the online assessment provider.

There is a widespread and mistaken assumption that Gen X workers, those aged 45–60, are less likely to adapt to new skills than their younger counterparts. A study for employment specialists Generation revealed that 38% of employers fear older workers are reluctant to try new technologies. Some 27% believe Gen X staff are unable to learn new skills.1

These assumptions are often not borne out by the evidence. Some 87% of hiring managers find that workers above the age of 45 prove to be just as effective as younger team members.2 And while younger workers may be more familiar with technology in their daily lives, experts warn that this will not automatically equip them with the digital skills they need in the workplace.3

John Kleeman, Founder of Questionmark, said: “Employers must decide how to equip their workers with the modern skills they need. And they shouldn’t base such an important decision on assumptions. Leaders need real information on employee skills so that they can make informed decisions on development, training and recruitment.”

Measuring the skills of the workforce with online assessments gives employers real information on skills across the workforce. With this information, leaders can challenge assumptions and prejudices. They can make better decisions on managing their teams, the distribution of tasks and career development.

The results will also pinpoint areas of strength and weakness. Employers can then focus training where it is most needed. Testing participants after training will show whether it worked.

www.questionmark.com

Ends

Notes to editors

About Questionmark

Questionmark unlocks performance through reliable and secure online assessments.

Questionmark provides a secure enterprise-grade assessment platform and professional services to leading organizations around the world, delivered with care and unequalled expertise. Its full-service online assessment tool and professional services help customers to improve their performance and meet their compliance requirements. Questionmark enables organizations to unlock their potential by delivering assessments which are valid, reliable, fair and defensible.

Questionmark offers secure powerful integration with other LMS, LRS and proctoring services making it easy to bring everything together in one place. Questionmark’s cloud-based assessment management platform offers rapid deployment, scalability for high-volume test delivery, 24/7 support, and the peace-of-mind of secure, audited U.S., Australian and European-based data centers.


1 https://www.cnbc.com/2021/07/26/gen-x-workers-may-face-the-biggest-unemployment-crisis-generation.html
2 https://www.cnbc.com/2021/07/26/gen-x-workers-may-face-the-biggest-unemployment-crisis-generation.html
3 https://feweek.co.uk/2021/06/12/young-people-arent-digital-natives-in-the-way-employers-need/

Contacts

For more information:

US: Kristin Bernor, external relations: Kristin.bernor@questionmark.com +1 203.349.6438

UK: Gareth Streeter: gareth.streeter@fourteenforty.uk +44 7734 251 496

Australia and New Zealand: Chelsea Dowd: chelsea.dowd@questionmark.com +61 2 8073 0527

Employers Struggling to Find the Skills to Accelerate Agility

Gulf emerging between the skills firms need and those available on the job market

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#Questionmark–Firms are searching for new team members with the skills to help them accelerate agility and meet the challenges of a changing world. But they are struggling to find recruits with the right skills to fill job vacancies.

Assessing people’s skills during recruitment can help ensure they find the right ones, says online assessment provider Questionmark.

Questionmark PrimaryLogo

The skills firms need are changing. Companies listed 33% more skills on job adverts in 2020 than they did in 2017.1 And job seekers are not always honest about what they can deliver. Some 78% of job applicants admit to misrepresenting, or considering misrepresenting, their skills during the application.2

The United States government recently reported 9.2 million unfilled job vacancies. A similar number of people are searching for work.3 This suggests a mismatch between the skills employers need and those available.

The new Questionmark report, “Skills, Culture, Vocation: Finding the Right Recruits” encourages employers to improve their recruitment decisions by:

  1. Checking the skills of job candidates – assessments give real information about a candidate’s current skills base. Questionmark provides the platform to build and deliver bespoke tests for a wide variety of needs.
  2. Testing for judgment – situational judgment assessments (SJAs) are a way of measuring if a candidate can make considered decisions.
  3. Measuring potential – Questionmark Thinking Skills by Cambridge Assessment enables employers to measure critical-thinking abilities which can indicate how a candidate might develop throughout their career.

John Kleeman, Founder of Questionmark, said: “To accelerate their agility and thrive in a changing business environment, employers are seeking more skills than ever before. By testing the abilities of candidates during the recruitment process, hirers may discover that a potential employee has more skills than their resume suggests.

“Candidates won’t always tick all the boxes, but by measuring potential, an employer can identify who has the aptitude to learn and develop.”

Read the full report: “Skills, Culture, Vocation: Finding the Right Recruits”.

www.questionmark.com

Ends

Notes to editors

About Questionmark

Questionmark unlocks performance through reliable and secure online assessments.

Questionmark provides a secure enterprise-grade assessment platform and professional services to leading organizations around the world, delivered with care and unequalled expertise. Its full-service online assessment tool and professional services help customers to improve their performance and meet their compliance requirements. Questionmark enables organizations to unlock their potential by delivering assessments which are valid, reliable, fair and defensible.

Questionmark offers secure powerful integration with other LMS, LRS and proctoring services making it easy to bring everything together in one place. Questionmark’s cloud-based assessment management platform offers rapid deployment, scalability for high-volume test delivery, 24/7 support, and the peace-of-mind of secure, audited U.S., Australian and European-based data centers.

___________________________________

1 https://hbr.org/2021/01/9-trends-that-will-shape-work-in-2021-and-beyond
2 https://www.cnbc.com/2020/02/19/how-many-job-seekers-lie-on-their-job-application.html
3 https://www.forbes.com/sites/jackkelly/2021/07/12/the-great-jobs-mismatch-why-companies-arent-hiring-and-candidates-cant-find-jobs/?sh=67fbaecc276c

Contacts

For more information:

US: Kristin Bernor, external relations: Kristin.bernor@questionmark.com +1 203.349.6438

UK: James Boyd-Wallis: james.boyd-wallis@fourteenforty.uk +44 7793 021 607

Australia and New Zealand: Chelsea Dowd: chelsea.dowd@questionmark.com +61 2 8073 0527