With Ireland now positioned as a global leader in ICT, the Government is ambitious about growing this vital sector and the amount of women in IT.
Throughout the recession ICT has been one of the brightest lights of our economy. It accounts for €70 billion of our exports each year and its growth has positioned Ireland as the second largest exporter of computer and IT services in the world. Ireland is now home to global leaders, including Intel, EMC, IBM, Microsoft, Google, Amazon, PayPal, Facebook, eBay and Twitter.
In March, the Government published the ICT Skills Action Plan 2014. It sets out the Governments core objectives in enhancing the ICT sector further and driving additional investment and growth in the sector.
Key objectives within the Plan include:
- A target to create and fill 44,500 jobs for ICT professionals up to 2018.
- Providing an extra 1,250 ICT undergraduate places a year from 2014 and issuing up to 2,000 work permits a year to ICT professional with relevant skills.
- Increasing the retention rate of students on ICT related courses and launching a further round of ICT skills conversion courses.
- Promoting careers in ICT to primary and second level students with industry support and the roll out of courses in digital media literacy, programming and coding in the new Junior Cycle.
While women are now equal or surpass men in terms of number in most areas of our economy, they continue to be under-represented in ICT. Yet they are a vital untapped resource in meeting the current and future demands of the tech sector.
We are committed to working with all stakeholders – the ICT employers, schools and academics, parents, students and others – to challenge negative stereotypes which might dissuade more women from getting involved in ICT and to drive the message that ICT is a worthwhile and fulfilling career for men and women alike.
See the full Hays report here