Welcome!

News Feed Item

Tech Collective Releases Rhode Island Information Technology Skills Gap Report

Tech Collective, Rhode Island’s Information Technology and Bioscience industry association, today released its “Why IT Works” Rhode Island Information Technology Skills Gap Study.

The first state-wide industry report since 2007, “Why IT Works” comprehensively focuses on Rhode Island’s high-tech, high-growth IT industry – identifying its workforce skills gaps at the entry and mid-levels; career pathways and professional development; education pipeline from K-12 through higher education; and offering recommendations to move forward.

The study was conducted by Community Economic Futures and Tech Collective. Over the past 14 months, it was researched and compiled using local and national industry data and garnering Rhode Island employer and employee insights via focus groups, one-on-one interviews, and surveys. Findings of the report aim to raise awareness of and guide investments in Rhode Island’s IT workforce.

Industry Overview

Rhode Island employs 13,500 IT professionals and growing. IT employment is almost evenly split across “core” IT industry sectors (IT services, software, networking, etc.) and “utility” companies across other industries (finance, healthcare, education, etc.). Rhode Island’s “core” IT industry supports 19,000 jobs, including professionals with non-IT occupations.

Report Findings

The “Why IT Works” report determines that Rhode Island does indeed face an IT skills gap, but it is not alone; comprising 2.7% of all employment in the state, Rhode Island is actually at the U.S. average. Still, Rhode Island IT employers are continually recruiting, with only 65% saying their current IT talent base is “adequate.”

Skills gap findings in the report highlight employers’ critical need for IT talent with both technical and professional skill sets. Top technical needs include: project management, programming, web design, software development, and business analysts. Top professional skills include: big-picture perspective, leadership, and the ability to understand business needs. In an industry that is becoming continuously service-oriented and customer-facing, being able to communicate with “non-technical” clients and relate technological capabilities to benefit the business is of the highest value to employers.

The report also explores the many available IT career pathways and development opportunities. IT professionals enter the industry from a variety of backgrounds and continue developing their skill sets throughout their careers. Education channels include: degrees in or outside of IT, industry-recognized IT certifications, and innovative short-term training programs.

Recommendations

As IT employers anticipate growth over the next 3-5 years, recommendations following the report reflect the need to expand, enhance, and support STEM and IT opportunities for Rhode Island, including for students, transitioning workers, and employed IT professionals (incumbent workers). Support for on-going technology-related initiatives, including digital literacy, entrepreneurship, and economic growth was also emphasized. Another recommendation suggests creating a state-wide IT “pipeline and resource assessment” to identify and make available programs and resources to Rhode Island IT employers, workers, and the industry at large.

Focus on Connections and Growth

Following its recommendations, the report aims to serve as a strategic tool, engaging and connecting all public and private workforce and industry related programs, initiatives and agencies. One such collaborative agency is Commerce RI (formerly the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation):

"It is the mission of Commerce RI to work with public, private and non-profit partners to create the conditions for businesses in all sectors to thrive and to improve the quality of life for our citizens by promoting the State's long-term economic health and prosperity,” said Commerce RI Executive Director Marcel A. Valois. “We rely on organizations like Tech Collective that bring added value by delivering industry specific data to help make more strategic decisions.”

“Understanding the need of our IT employers is one of the most valuable tools we can have,” said Kathie Shields, Tech Collective’s executive director. “The ‘Why IT Works’ report is a strategic guide we can use together as a state over the next 1-3 years. It will allow us to further existing initiatives and create and sustain new programming needed to close the skills gap across the workforce pipeline. Rhode Island’s IT industry is a strong asset; this report is a framework for us to create a workforce from which both our industry and economy can continue to grow.”

The skills gap study was funded by an Industry Partnership grant through the Governor’s Workforce Board of Rhode Island (GWBRI). Tech Collective released the first Rhode Island IT Skills Gap report in 2007, also funded by GWBRI, which values such workforce reports from each of its eight industry partners as opportunities to identify areas of success, need, and recommendations for future funding and initiatives.

Skills Gap Forum Series

In addition to its IT skills gap study, Tech Collective will be releasing its Rhode Island Bioscience Skills Gap Report in February 2014. The release of the report will be followed by a six-part monthly “Skills Gap Series.” Featuring a panel of Rhode Island leaders and stakeholders, each forum is an opportunity to discuss the findings of the reports as well as current and future initiatives the state can undertake to grow and innovate in these industries.

There will be three forums per industry, each focusing on Industry, Education, and Government. All forums will be morning sessions held at Save the Bay. The first forum will focus on the IT industry and be held on Wednesday, February 26, 2014. The Skills Gap Series forums are open to the public. Industry, academic, and state leaders and stakeholders are encouraged to attend.

For more information or to download Tech Collective’s “Why IT Works” Rhode Island IT Skills Gap Report, visit www.tech-collective.org.

About Tech Collective:

Tech Collective is Rhode Island’s Bioscience and Information Technology Industry Association. Uniting industry, government and academic stakeholders, our mission is to inspire, engage, educate and employ a high-skill, high-wage Knowledge Economy in Rhode Island. Since its transition from the Rhode Island Technology Council (RITEC) in 2004, Tech Collective has received more than $8M in federal, state and private grant funding to foster industry and workforce awareness, collaboration, and development through forums and initiatives including: Tech10, GRRL Tech, Women in Technology, Bio-Ed, and STEM-based education and training programs for K-16 students as well as incumbent and transitioning workers. Get connected to Tech Collective at www.tech-collective.org, on Facebook (TechCollectiveRI), Twitter (@Tech_Collective), and on Linkedin (Tech Collective).

More Stories By Business Wire

Copyright © 2009 Business Wire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Business Wire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Business Wire. Business Wire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
Enterprise IT has been in the era of Hybrid Cloud for some time now. But it seems most conversations about Hybrid are focused on integrating AWS, Microsoft Azure, or Google ECM into existing on-premises systems. Where is all the Private Cloud? What do technology providers need to do to make their offerings more compelling? How should enterprise IT executives and buyers define their focus, needs, and roadmap, and communicate that clearly to the providers?
"We are an all-flash array storage provider but our focus has been on VM-aware storage specifically for virtualized applications," stated Dhiraj Sehgal of Tintri in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 19th Cloud Expo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
"We are a leader in the market space called network visibility solutions - it enables monitoring tools and Big Data analysis to access the data and be able to see the performance," explained Shay Morag, VP of Sales and Marketing at Niagara Networks, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 19th Cloud Expo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
According to Forrester Research, every business will become either a digital predator or digital prey by 2020. To avoid demise, organizations must rapidly create new sources of value in their end-to-end customer experiences. True digital predators also must break down information and process silos and extend digital transformation initiatives to empower employees with the digital resources needed to win, serve, and retain customers.
Amazon has gradually rolled out parts of its IoT offerings in the last year, but these are just the tip of the iceberg. In addition to optimizing their back-end AWS offerings, Amazon is laying the ground work to be a major force in IoT – especially in the connected home and office. Amazon is extending its reach by building on its dominant Cloud IoT platform, its Dash Button strategy, recently announced Replenishment Services, the Echo/Alexa voice recognition control platform, the 6-7 strategic...
Organizations planning enterprise data center consolidation and modernization projects are faced with a challenging, costly reality. Requirements to deploy modern, cloud-native applications simultaneously with traditional client/server applications are almost impossible to achieve with hardware-centric enterprise infrastructure. Compute and network infrastructure are fast moving down a software-defined path, but storage has been a laggard. Until now.
We're entering the post-smartphone era, where wearable gadgets from watches and fitness bands to glasses and health aids will power the next technological revolution. With mass adoption of wearable devices comes a new data ecosystem that must be protected. Wearables open new pathways that facilitate the tracking, sharing and storing of consumers’ personal health, location and daily activity data. Consumers have some idea of the data these devices capture, but most don’t realize how revealing and...
IoT solutions exploit operational data generated by Internet-connected smart “things” for the purpose of gaining operational insight and producing “better outcomes” (for example, create new business models, eliminate unscheduled maintenance, etc.). The explosive proliferation of IoT solutions will result in an exponential growth in the volume of IoT data, precipitating significant Information Governance issues: who owns the IoT data, what are the rights/duties of IoT solutions adopters towards t...
Get deep visibility into the performance of your databases and expert advice for performance optimization and tuning. You can't get application performance without database performance. Give everyone on the team a comprehensive view of how every aspect of the system affects performance across SQL database operations, host server and OS, virtualization resources and storage I/O. Quickly find bottlenecks and troubleshoot complex problems.
Whether your IoT service is connecting cars, homes, appliances, wearable, cameras or other devices, one question hangs in the balance – how do you actually make money from this service? The ability to turn your IoT service into profit requires the ability to create a monetization strategy that is flexible, scalable and working for you in real-time. It must be a transparent, smoothly implemented strategy that all stakeholders – from customers to the board – will be able to understand and comprehe...
Between 2005 and 2020, data volumes will grow by a factor of 300 – enough data to stack CDs from the earth to the moon 162 times. This has come to be known as the ‘big data’ phenomenon. Unfortunately, traditional approaches to handling, storing and analyzing data aren’t adequate at this scale: they’re too costly, slow and physically cumbersome to keep up. Fortunately, in response a new breed of technology has emerged that is cheaper, faster and more scalable. Yet, in meeting these new needs they...
Complete Internet of Things (IoT) embedded device security is not just about the device but involves the entire product’s identity, data and control integrity, and services traversing the cloud. A device can no longer be looked at as an island; it is a part of a system. In fact, given the cross-domain interactions enabled by IoT it could be a part of many systems. Also, depending on where the device is deployed, for example, in the office building versus a factory floor or oil field, security ha...
An IoT product’s log files speak volumes about what’s happening with your products in the field, pinpointing current and potential issues, and enabling you to predict failures and save millions of dollars in inventory. But until recently, no one knew how to listen. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Dan Gettens, Chief Research Officer at OnProcess, discussed recent research by Massachusetts Institute of Technology and OnProcess Technology, where MIT created a new, breakthrough analytics model for s...
When it comes to cloud computing, the ability to turn massive amounts of compute cores on and off on demand sounds attractive to IT staff, who need to manage peaks and valleys in user activity. With cloud bursting, the majority of the data can stay on premises while tapping into compute from public cloud providers, reducing risk and minimizing need to move large files. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Scott Jeschonek, Director of Product Management at Avere Systems, discussed the IT and busin...
"We are the public cloud providers. We are currently providing 50% of the resources they need for doing e-commerce business in China and we are hosting about 60% of mobile gaming in China," explained Yi Zheng, CPO and VP of Engineering at CDS Global Cloud, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 19th Cloud Expo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.