Filling the MENA IT Skills Gap

Middle Eastern governments and employers look to train and upskill workers to meet the demands of digital transformation.

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The MENA region is facing a critical challenge as governments and enterprises implement ambitious digital transformation strategies. While the desire and resources to modernise exist, trained professionals are sorely needed.

From Bahrain's implementation of a government-wide "cloud-first policy" to the United Arab Emirates' launch of the "UAE Strategy for Artificial Intelligence," nations across the MENA region are looking to emerging technologies to power the next phase of regional development.

The resulting proliferation of technology-enabled jobs will undoubtedly shift the employment landscape in the region in the near future. Just this year, overall spending on information and communication technology in the Middle East, Turkey, and Africa is set to grow 2.5 percent year on year to reach US$213 billion, according to IDC. 

"The changing job market is a key issue for all businesses," says Necip Ozyucel, cloud and enterprise group lead, Microsoft Gulf. "In our surveys, when we ask about the next few years, businesses recognise that the skills gap is a big concern. The reason for this is simply the rapid pace of technology development right now."

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