Hi there, I’m James Brooklyn, the new Skills and Talent Manager at Wired Sussex. I just wanted to take a moment to introduce myself and share what I hope to achieve in 2018 with the Wired Sussex team.
Like with any career, mine has had its fair share of challenges and rewards alike. And through each I have always enjoyed advising people in their own careers, to offer new insight and share my experiences to ultimately help individuals grow in their respective pathways.
I have joined to help support member companies with their challenges around recruitment, better understand the issues they face, and spearhead initiatives that will help make a real difference to the local digital community and support the next generation of digital talent to flourish.
Part of my strategy will be to spark debate amongst the digital community, asking our members to deeply consider skills and digital talent attraction. As a city at the hub of innovation in the South East, we should be challenging standard recruitment and training practices and encouraging young start-ups and innovative enterprises to shout from the rooftops about their business proposition, and how they’re attracting and retaining digital talent.
Too much focus is given to the doom-mongers banging the drum about the digital skills gap, while not enough credit is given to the companies trying to forge new methods in their approach to grow and recruit skilled and talented team members.
Our members’ Capgemini and LinkedIn recently published a report titled “The Digital Talent Gap: are companies doing enough?” This insightful piece of research puts the spotlight on both hard and soft digital skills; the latter often overlooked while hard digital skills derive the most attention. A key component of the research showed that many employees and digital talent actively looking for work worry about their future and clearly feel the need to keep their skills current.
This drives home the growing demands of the current and new digital workforce. Careers in the industry are no longer a clear and set out path for life, and with the speed of change across the digital sector the stagnant worker is increasingly the unemployed worker.
With this in mind, I would like to pose a question to our Wired Sussex members and to the digital community of Brighton.
How much time and money do you invest in skills and development for your workforce, and do you offer a structured training programme to your new employees?
I look forward to working with you to boost the skills and talent of our city that drives an exceptional digital industry. Let’s start the conversation!