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Key statistics:

  • there are nearly 3,000 businesses in the Welsh IT & Telecoms industry – 89% of which are IT companies and 11% Telecoms
  • 98% of companies are services businesses rather than manufacturing
  • 95% of firms are micro-businesses, 1% of firms employ 200 people or more
  • 37,000 people work in IT & Telecoms, which is 3% of the Welsh workforce
  • of the 37,000, 21,000 work in the IT & Telecoms industry and a further 16,000 work as IT or Telecoms professionals in other industries in Wales
  • the largest employers of IT and Telecoms professionals, outside of the IT & Telecoms industry, are: Public Administration, Education and Health; Financial services; Distribution, Hotels and Restaurants; and Manufacturing

Workforce profile:

  • 15% of IT & Telecoms professionals are female
  • 4% of the workforce are aged under 18 years old
  • 27% of the workforce is aged 16-29 years, 33% 30-39 years, and 40% aged 40 plus
  • the sector, generally, favours experienced workers from other sectors over young recruits from the education system.
  • 94% of the workforce identified themselves as ‘White’, compared to 97% of all occupations in Wales
  • 10% of the workforce have a disability

The IT & Telecoms workforce in Wales is highly qualified:

  • 62% of IT & Telecoms professionals in Wales hold a Level 4 or higher qualification, compared to 29% of the Welsh workforce
  • 7% of IT & Telecoms professionals are not qualified to Level 2, compared to 14% of the Welsh workforce
  • those working in the Telecoms industry are less likely than those in the IT industry to have the higher levels of qualification
  • 52% of IT & Telecoms companies had funded or arranged off-the-job training in the last year, compared to 58% of all companies in Wales

The number of people employed in IT professional occupations in Wales has grown by 80% since the early 1990s. 27% of IT & Telecoms professionals in Wales are employed as ICT Managers; this occupation has grown most rapidly in the last six years. 43% are employed as either IT strategy and planning or Software professionals. There have been decreases in the numbers employed as IT operations technicians/IT user support, Database and Engineering roles. The numbers employed in ICT manager, IT strategy & planning and Software professional roles are predicted to grow, compared with the numbers in the lower skilled roles will are predicted to continue to decrease.

On average, there is a need for 3,200 new entrants into IT & Telecoms occupations per year in Wales.

The growth of the IT & Telecoms sector in Wales is predicted to continue. Over the next ten years, employment in IT is predicted to grow at a rate of 2.5% per annum, but decline by 0.9% per annum in Telecoms. For all sectors in Wales, there is predicted to be a growth rate of 0.6% per annum. Combined the IT and Telecoms industry has a growth of 0.9% per annum.

22% of IT & Telecoms businesses in Wales, compared to 18% across all industries reported a skills gap in any one occupational group. In the future, there will be greater emphasis on higher skills levels particularly on: architecture and systems planning; information management and security; and management and procurement.

Average gross weekly earnings for those working in the Welsh IT & Telecoms sector is £480, compared to £370 for all sectors.

Source: Technology Counts Wales: IT & Telecoms Insights 2008