In the electrical and IT sectors, 60% of businesses expect growth to remain the same in the coming year, with 26% even counting on an upswing. The skills shortage is cited by firms as posing the greatest risk of an economic slowdown (60%), ahead of even the implications of Brexit (39%), political uncertainties (35%) and economic weakness in Europe (33%).
Particularly in demand – or desperately sought after – are IT security experts. Ansgar Hinz, CEO of electrical and industrial technology trade association the VDE , explains: “Corporations, mid-tier companies, startups and universities have only one prospect of meeting their need for qualified employees: they need to recruit their staff from abroad. Almost one in four are forced to do this.” This is the conclusion reached by the 2019 VDE Tec-Report “ AI – The Next Step in Industrialization?” , which was based on a survey of the 1,300 VDE member companies and of universities teaching courses in electrical and information technologies.