UK will need 2.3 million IT workers by 2020

If you thought the story about Europe needing 800,000 workers in the IT security industry by 2020 was insane, you'll be blown away with what O2 claims.

According to its research, the UK alone will need 2.3 million workers with IT skills by the same time. The research also predicts 766,000 new jobs will be created over the next five years, with London and the south-east being the main targets.

This poses somewhat of a problem, with the north-west and east of England expected to create just eight per cent of digital jobs.

As a result, O2 has launched a Digital Communities pilot in St. Helens, in Merseyside, to encourage young people to pursue IT careers outside London.

“It’s promising to see so many jobs will be required to fulfil the UK’s digital potential. But we can’t get complacent – these figures highlight that the economy is nowhere near digital maturity and – worryingly – the opportunities that are being created, are predominantly in the south,” O2 business director, Ben Dowd, said.

“We’re committed to playing our part – which is why we’ve launched an ambitious partnership with St Helens Council to show other communities what’s possible when they put connectivity at their heart."

The general idea is to create a “blueprint”, which could serve as a road sign, showing other areas in the country all the benefits of connectivity and the benefits of going digital.

Dowd said he will encourage other countries to do the same, so that “the entire nation can feel the benefits of the UK’s growing digital economy”.